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Vegas restaurant suggestions (MGM, Wynn, Palms)

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Greetings all,

I've been a lurker on this board for quite some time and have gotten great insight into many restaurants!! However, I'm a little undecided on the restaurants to eat at during my upcoming trip to Vegas the first week of October. I'm going with the girlfriend for 3 nights (1st night at MGM Signature, the other 2 nights at Encore) and am planning on the following:

Day 1:
Lunch - Sushi Roku
Dinner - L'Atelier de Joel Robuchon

Day 2:
Lunch - Country Club
Dinner - Alex (Taste of Wynn)

Day 3:
Brunch - Tableau
Dinner - Sinatra

Any suggestions/thoughts on these? I'm going back and forth on dinner the 1st and 3rd nights (100% sure I want to do the TOW at Alex). I REALLY want to try L'Atelier, but hear mixed reviews on service. Since I am with the girlfriend, and paying Michelin star prices, service is one thing I do not want to compromise on. In fact, this is one reason I chose not to eat at Daniel Boulud Brasserie, as I hear service there is lacking.

Do you think I would be better off going to Mix, Alize or Michael Mina (not French, I know) over L'Atelier? If I went to L'Atelier, I'd do the $75 tasting menu which seems to be a terrific value for that price point, and I'd be looking for the same in another restaurant.

Finally, would anyone here recommend Nove Italiano over Sinatra? There aren't a lot of posts on Nove, and I'm wondering if you're paying more simply for the view and the fact that you can go to Moon/Playboy right afterwards. It definitely appears to be more chic than Sinatra, which is a plus, but I don't want to sacrifice food quality and service.

ANY suggestions/comments are welcome! Many thanks in advance!!

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  1. Just came back from LV, had an exceptional meal at L'Atelier - we had the $39 l'Unique menu, and added in a cheese course. Service was certainly in line with what you'd expect from a Michelin-starred restaurant, in spite of the fact that we were ordering the cheapest meals on the menu - I wouldn't hesitate to recommend it. IMHO, the service at Daniel Boulud, where we ate the night prior to L'Atelier, was even better (with one of us ordering off of the Taste of Wynn menu, the other off the regular menu). And the food at both was equally good. But again, that's just my .02

    8 Replies
    1. re: cherylmtl

      Thanks Cheryl! To be honest, I know the menu at DB would be more appealing to my girlfriend and I think the ambience at DB is better, especially with Parasol Down right nearby for pre-dinner drinks. My only real concern about DB is that several people I know have went there and said that service was slow (borderline second-rate) and that the restaurant was better suited for large groups as opposed to couples out for a nice dinner. I'm glad you had a better experience service-wise. Perhaps I should re-consider it.

      1. re: rsa80

        The food was spectacular at DB, IMO. It was really busy the night I went with the hubby, so I could understand why service wasn't as spot on as I'm sure it usually is. The cocktails at the bar were fabulous and refreshing, the wine pairing suggestions were excellent, and though, the service wasn't exactly what we were expecting, it was truly the best meal we've ever had. Food was perfectly executed and immaculately plated.

        1. re: attran99

          Attran, thanks for the response.

          It is a little concerning that you are forgiving of less than stellar service because they were busy. If a restaurant is as good as people say (and with the traffic of tourists that Vegas regularly gets, even in this economy), shouldn't it be used to having a packed house and making the necessary adjustments? I've read several reviews of people waiting for 30 minutes between dishes or even before getting their water and bread! That is inexcusable for a restaurant at this price point.

          1. re: rsa80

            Actually, we didn't have long waits for anything. Our food arrive promptly when we were ready. We had dined at CP Steak the night before and received personalized service that was simply superb. DB did not have the same level of personalized service that we were hoping for because it was a packed house. We didn't get to know our waiter as well, it was a bit hard to flag him down for questions regarding the ingredients and preparation of our meal because it was so busy, and he forgot that I wanted a glass of champagne with my dessert. Outside of that, we did not have to wait 30 mins between dishes...they were spaced out perfectly...as soon as we were finished with appetizers, our entrees were delivered within two minutes after the staff came to clear the table. We never had to ask for water refills, the staff came by to refill when our glasses were half-full. The execution of the food made up for some of the errors...and I didn't mind all that much that I didn't get the champagne...it wasn't a situation where it would have ruined the meal. Dinner for the two of us that night after tax and tip was $150...so considering the price point, not a bad night. Hope this clears things up a bit.

            1. re: attran99

              Yeah, I have been to DB a handful of times and the service is pretty good. But I would still go to Rubuchon's places over DB, the food is just that much better to me.

              1. re: A5 KOBE

                I'm hitting up Rubuchon places the next time I go to Vegas.

                1. re: A5 KOBE

                  It's worth noting that DB and the Robuchon joints serve contrasting styles of French fare.

                  DB is more of a "comfort food with style" sort of place whereas Robuchon does layering of flavors with an emphasis on presentation.

                  I prefer the food at DB because it's way more approachable than most of the dishes at either JR establishment. And, for what it's worth, I've never experienced any lack in service at DB - but then again, it's not Alex or Picasso, or Guy Savoy, or ... heh ... Joel Robuchon @ the Mansion ( where impeccable service is a must ). It's a stylistic, upscale, French Bistro ... service is important but not the pinnacle of the meal.

        2. re: cherylmtl

          Just back as well, ate at Boloud on Monday. My favorite restaurant in Vegas. Beautiful atmosphere on the terrace (lake of dreams show). Service was impeccable. The servers were like ghosts..they were there whenever we needed them but never noticed the small things that they did. Taste of Wynn is a great way to go to experience exceptional restaurants without breaking the bank.

        3. Sinatra vs Nove depends on what you'd like to do after dinner. Because as you already stated, Nove is directly under the clubs (if I remember correctly just eating at Nove doesn't get you access to either club - we had to cajole their bouncer quite a bit to get in...then left after 15 minutes because they were both dead). The food at Nove was very good, but you do pay for the view...but then again all their booths back up to the windows so have no view and also block the view from most tables. So the view was pretty, but would have been a lot better if we could see it ;-)

          I've only eaten dinner in the bar at Sinatra - twice, because we enjoyed it that much. Service was outstanding - much better than Nove - but we really appreciated their casual, friendly attitude in the beautiful surroundings of the restaurant. And I really, really appreciated their lobster risotto - YUM. They perfectly delivered on all our special requests without batting an eye (or charging extra).

          It may sound like I'm pushing Sinatra, and it is a better restaurant (bar?), but Nove is good too. Because the restaurants are located so far apart the choice between the two can be dependent on what else you're doing that night.

          2 Replies
          1. re: AllPhoenix

            Thanks for the reply Phoenix. Yeah, I was leaning towards Sinatra and it makes more sense since I'm staying at Encore, but the view and trendy ambience at Nove was very tempting! Glad to hear you liked the lobster risotto, as looking at the menu both that and the tagliata caught my eye...definitely looking forward to it

            1. re: rsa80

              It's funny you mention the tagliatelle, because that's what we had the 2nd time there (with shrimp, right?) Wow - VERY good dish, with big shrimp that were cooked perfectly. Good thing we weren't wearing light colored clothes, because our klutzy selves with wide, long pasta in red sauce is a mess waiting to happen!

          2. Sounds like a great line up of amazing eating. My boyfriend has a poker problem, so I have eaten my way around Las Vegas. Though I can't speak for any of the new restaurants in the Encore, I have generally had great experiences at Alex and at Barolotta at the Wynn. The full tasting at Alex was one of the best meals I've had in my life. For what it's worth, I have not experienced any service issues at L'Atelier de Joel Robuchon (did the $135 Discovery Menu a while back) or Daniel Boulud. The early dinner prix fixe at Daniel Boulud is very good food at a good price. Mix, for me, was more about the view (which is spectacular - my vote for most impressive bathroom in Vegas - which is really saying a lot) than the food (very solid).

            The only thing I might suggest is to do brunch at Bouchon at the Venetian if you are in Vegas during the weekend. If you already live in an area with great sushi (e.g., LA/NYC), you may want to skip Sushi Roku. Sushi Roku is an upscale decent to mediocre sushi mini-chain in LA (run by the same people who do the BOA Steakhouse in LA) with a Vegas outpost. It's fine and it's decent (been to both the Beverly Hills and Vegas locations), but there are better sushi options around. If you're shopping at the Caesar's Forum Shops and find yourself near Roku, then by all means go. Oh, and if you're into fun flavored chocolates, check out the Vosges Chocolate Store on the ground floor of the Caesar's Forum Shops (they've got stuff like the famous bacon laced chocolate bar, truffles flavored with curry, and ice cream). Have a great time eating!

            1. L'Atelier is a great restaurant. I never had a problem with the service there. That said, when I have heard about bad service it has usually been when sitting at a table as opposed to the bar.

              Eat at the bar. It's an interesting view & the chef will talk to you once in a while if he's a good mood. If you bust out some French with him it's even better.

              1. I think your dinner spots are perfect. I would reconsider lunches though. Tableau and Country Club seem to be the same type of restaurant to me, I could be mistaken though. There are better options out there. As for Roku even if you are in the Forum shops go some where else. That place is not good and the prices are just ridiculous. My go too lunch spots are noodle 9 and mesa in caesars and san marco in the venetian.