There are thousands of restaurants to choose from in Las Vegas. If you’re trying to narrow it down and find one that offers a unique touch, try a restaurant that offers tableside food service.
With tableside service you get the personal touch of interacting with the person making your food. When the dish is made in front of you, you know it’s fresh and you can see the care that goes into preparing it.
There’s also a theatrical element to tableside service. The “wow” factor of your server making a flaming dessert or a smoking cocktail will make you the envy of all the other diners in the room.
Tableside service used to be the trademark of fine dining restaurants and is now considered sort of an old school dining tradition, but there are still quite a few places in Las Vegas where you can enjoy it. There are an increasing number of restaurants that will concoct tableside cocktails as well. Here are some of our picks:
Michael’s Gourmet Room – This long-time Vegas restaurant at the South Point is an AAA Four Diamond Award winner. The intimate 50-seat restaurant serves desserts like bananas Foster and cherries jubilee for two, which are flambéed in spectacular fashion tableside.
Joe Vicari’s Andiamo Steakhouse – This Italian steakhouse at the D Las Vegas has a fresh Caesar salad on the menu and you’ll want to be sure to order it. Your server will make the zesty dressing from scratch in front of you and prepare and serve the salad tableside.
China Poblano – Chef Jose Andres mixes the flavors of China and Mexico in this restaurant at The Cosmopolitan. If you’re indulging in the Mexican fare, be sure to order the guacamole, which is prepared fresh tableside. It’s a delicious combination of avocado, lime, salt, queso fresco and tomatillo mixed with a mortar and pestle at your table.
Golden Steer – This classic, old school Vegas steakhouse has been in business since 1958. The restaurant features several tableside presentations. The Dover sole is deboned tableside and the chateaubriand is carved at your table. You can also enjoy a Caesar salad freshly tossed in front of you and for dessert enjoy the bananas Foster, flambéed at your table.
Hugo’s Cellar – This classic restaurant at the Four Queens serves a signature tableside salad. A cart is wheeled up and you can choose from a multitude of items to add to your salad, which the server will toss together for you. It’s like a salad bar on wheels! Bananas Foster is also prepared tableside for dessert.
While foods like salads and desserts have been prepared tableside for years, cocktails have joined the mix recently. There are several places in town where you can have specialty drinks prepared personally for you at your table.
RX Boiler Room at Mandalay Bay – You can have a cart wheeled to your table and a mixologist will whip up a cocktail concoction for two. It’s a great chance to see just how much effort goes into creating the drinks. One of the choices is Papa’s Got a Brand New Shaker, which features a blend of 10 Cane Rum, house-made spiced grapefruit-lime cordial, anise liqueur, tiki bitters and a ginger-infused sugar-rolled grapefruit cube for garnish.
Sugar Factory Brasserie at Paris – Sugar Factory has dozens of enticing drinks on their menu and the restaurant introduced its new cocktail cart this year, which offers tableside service. Not only can you order a unique cocktail prepared at your table, you can have liquid nitrogen added to your drink to enliven the experience. The liquid nitrogen creates an exotic “fog” that enhances not only the overall presentation of the cocktail, but its taste and texture. The liquid nitrogen infused cocktails are served in a slushy state. As the temperature rises, the drink returns to a normal liquid state. Cocktails can be made with or without liquid nitrogen. The liquid nitrogen enhancement is an additional $5 per drink.
Just a few of the choices include the Hubba Bubba, made with Three Olives Bubble Gum vodka, DK Pomegranate liqueur, white grape juice, fresh lemon sour, rock candy syrup and fresh lime juice; the Blow Pop, with Three Olives Bubble Gum vodka, DK Apple Pucker, fresh lemon sour and green apple syrup; and the Jolly Rancher, made with Three Olives Watermelon vodka, DK Watermelon Pucker, fresh lemon juice and watermelon syrup.
Sage at Aria – You’ve heard of the “green fairy” and now’s your chance to try the mysterious drink – absinthe. There are 10 absinthe offerings at Sage, which can be served a number of ways from the cart that will roll up to your table for the presentation. Enjoy your absinthe in the classic way with a sugar cube, absinthe spoon and water; set on fire and poured over ice while you inhale the fumes; or even from an absinthe sipping pipe.