Aria Hotel revamps The Buffet, delicious!

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It’s been a while since we reviewed a buffet so that’s where we headed this week. Every day I drive down the I-15 there’s pass a big billboard that has nothing on it but crab legs and “The Buffet at Aria.”

Well, that is simple and to the point, and I do love crab legs. So I decided to check out The Buffet inside the Aria Hotel and Casino. It’s been years since I have been to their buffet and they have revamped it recently.

When it comes to buffets in Las Vegas the bar is set pretty high. No longer is it a loss leader with lots of food at a cheap price to get you into the casino. Now they are extravagant gourmet feasts you want to go to. The Buffet (love the simple name) has food that is anything but simple.

As I mentioned, Aria has totally revamped their feast and I must say I am impressed. I started out at the fish section where I found the Crab Legs. Both hot and cold are offered.

The crab legs were good size and very sweet. That set the stage for a great meal.

Next up for me was some sushi and shrimp. Their peel and eat shrimp were very large and some of the biggest I have found on a buffet in Las Vegas.

So we were two for two on our choices so far. They had a very nice bread and salad section. In the Italian section you could make your own dipping sauce for the fresh breads, which was a nice touch.

I enjoyed some fresh sliced Italian salami and cheeses including fresh mozzarella. They had a fresh pasta station where a chef will make you a plate of pasta just the way you like it. I had a garlic and oil sauce with shrimp over linguine.

By this time we are starting to fill up and we haven’t even hit the carving station yet. The Prime Rib was very good; they also had Tri Tip and Pork shoulder slow roasted along with Turkey and Lemon Herb Chicken. The Prime Rib was an excellent cut of beef. Too often you will see a lesser quality of meat on a buffet carving station but this was top grade.

They had a baked potato station where you could dress it up with all your favorite toppings. Again I thought this was a great touch. Personally I passed on the potato as that would just take up room and we still had dessert to hit.

The dessert section will not disappoint as they had fresh cookies galore as well as cupcakes, cheesecakes, Apple Pie, Boston Cream Pie, Fresh Hot Peach Cobbler, Tiramisu and a huge selection of ice creams and gelatos. They had mini-whoopee pies that were very tasty as well.

We have all seen the Wheel of Fortune slot machines. Well, when hitting the dessert section you will see this big glass enclosed wheel that has all the tubs of ice cream and gelatos. When the wheel is moving it looks like the wheel of fortune slot machine only you are never disappointed on where it lands because every tub is a great tasting ice cream or gelato.

The Buffet at Aria is $34.99 Monday through Thursday and $39.99 Friday through Sunday for what they call their Gourmet Dinner. I was there on a Wednesday and quite pleased with the selection of food.

The wait staff was very friendly, kept my drinks filled and my plates cleared. I give The Buffet a rating of 3.75 Forks out of 4.

Marco D’Angelo is the senior handicapper at Pregame.com. He co-hosts FIRST PREVIEW every Thursday at 10 a.m. on ESPN 1100 AM/98.9 FM. Follow him on twitter: @MarcoInVegas. Contact him at [email protected].

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