The Hungry Wanderers

Eating and exploring our way through the world

Posts Tagged ‘buffet’

Paris Buffet Takes the Top Spot

Posted by Amanda @ The Hungry Wanderers on June 4, 2010

Ever since the Husband and I met, and on each trip to Las Vegas prior to moving here, the Husband has proclaimed the Spice Market Buffet as the best buffet in Las Vegas.  Each trip to the city, we would visit it and while the variety was nice, I never LOVED it the way he did.  This week we went back again as part of a birthday celebration for our friend Jeff and a handful of friends and family that came to celebrate this past week.

We decided to sign up for the Buffet of Buffets, 24-hour buffet pass sponsored by Harrah’s.  Tuesday night we headed to the Spice Market buffet.  The food was fine (like our last visit), but the service was quite poor.  After waiting over an hour to be seated (thanks to the popularity of the Buffet of Buffets), they were constantly out of plates and they seemed to be understaffed or our waiter was just bad at his job.  We didn’t get any drink refills and our plates took forever to be cleared.  So very frustrating.

Wednesday night we headed out for an early dinner in order to get it in before our 24 hours was up 🙂 We decided to go to Le Village Buffet at the Paris Hotel, a buffet I’ve wanted to try out for a bit.


As was expected, there was a line, but at 5:30pm, we only needed to wait a half hour or so.


IMG_3095 Inside the “building,” the buffet decor continued the rest of the Paris theme recreating Paris streets (love!).


IMG_3097 The Husband and I sat with his brother and sister-in-law “outside”…

IMG_3098 …while the rest of our group sat “inside” one of the buildings.

IMG_3099 Surveying the buffet, I loved the overall set up.  Each buffet section had a lovely sign with a French theme.

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I find that buffets are hard to photograph.  This buffet had a large pasta section (yay!), a large seafood section with amazing sushi, some meats (I didn’t try any) and lots and lots of veggies.  While choosing what to have, I thought that this would be a great buffet for vegetarians.

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We each like to get a small spoonful of a number of items – try many, taste a little.  A few pics of some of the plates we had.  As I mentioned before, the sushi was SO good.  Very fresh.  We both liked the smoked gouda and bacon mac n cheese, although it was a tad dry.


The salmon was cooked well and I loved all of the grilled veggies.

IMG_3111 A whole plate of pasta samples.  Heavenly! I don’t normally like pesto, but I enjoyed the Pesto Farfalle. The risotto was actually the worst item I tried and I loved the spinach & cheese ravioli.  It had large pieces of red pepper flakes so it was nice and spicy.

IMG_3112 After my fill of pasta, I headed back out to survey the dessert section.  First there was ice cream (as expected but I loved seeing the cones).


IMG_3114 I believe these were macarons which I saw floating around the blog world a few months ago.  I had one and I believe it had raspberry filling.  The filling was perfectly sweet but the outside wasn’t my favorite texture.  Not having had one before, I don’t have anything to compare it to unfortunately.

IMG_3115 In addition to my macaron, I also decided to get a crepe.  Thus far in Las Vegas, I have NOT enjoyed any crepes I’ve had (I’ve had them at Jean Phillipe and at the Spice Market Buffet).  There was a great assortment of fillings to choose from (apples, bananas, blueberries, and strawberries).  The chef seemed sweet as she made them 🙂



Unfortunately, the picture I took was quite blurry, but the crepe was so good.  The Husband and I added fresh whipped cream and chocolate sauce to it.  Yum!


The service was also excellent! Our waitress was always available when we needed her and we never needed our plates cleared or drinks refilled.  The whole group came to a consensus that this buffet has now moved to the top spot on our lists 🙂

Do you have a favorite Las Vegas buffet?

Le Village (Paris) on Urbanspoon


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Sweet Tomatoes

Posted by Amanda @ The Hungry Wanderers on May 25, 2010

This weekend, the Husband and I were in Charleston, SC for our good friends’ wedding.  We spent all day today attempting to get home as our flight from Charlotte to Chicago was delayed many hours due to multiple mechanical problems and it was ultimately cancelled.  We got rebooked on another airline and made it back to Las Vegas in the late afternoon.  The Husband and I hoped to get a handful of things done this afternoon/evening so we decided to check out Sweet Tomatoes prior to heading to the grocery store for the week (after getting a car wash and signing up for the gym!).

Sweet Tomatoes is a Salad Buffet restaurant, which was exactly what we were craving after traveling this past weekend.


The Husband had been to one before so he knew how it worked, but I appreciated that as soon as I walked in, I understood what I needed to do.  Upon entering the restaurant, we were to collect a tray and then we could head down the salad bar, collecting as much as we wanted on our first go.

IMG_3029 The first section of salads included pre-tossed salads.  We watched an employee tossing the salads at the front of the buffet so we knew they were fresh.

IMG_3030 Our options included Caesar Salad Asiago, Won Ton Chicken Happiness, and Rajun Cajun. I grabbed a small bit of the first and the third.



IMG_3033 Up next was the build-your-own salad section.  It had lots of traditional items as well as some unique items.

IMG_3034 I was particularly excited to find Butternut squash and Beets 🙂

IMG_3035 The main salad bar also had some premade cold salads.  I didn’t grab any as my salad plate was already full.

IMG_3036 After this last section of the salad bar, we found ourselves at the cashier where we paid for the buffet itself (which is way more than salad as you’ll see below) and beverages.  We had a coupon for a free dinner with the purchase of another adult meal and two drinks.  Even without the coupon, we were quite impressed with the price at less than $10 per person for the buffet.

After paying, the Husband and I found a table and began enjoying our salads.


IMG_3038 I then went off to explore the rest of the restaurant.  There was the section for beverages.  It included the traditional soda fountain as well as teas, juices, and lemonade.




The rest of the buffet sections included…

Soup (a wide variety!)




A bakery which included muffins, brownies, other desserts, and cheesy bread





A pasta bar which included three pastas… one of them was mac n cheese which I found to be better than it looked and fine for a reasonably priced buffet (not great)



There was also a baked potato bar – an area I’ll check out more the next time I visit I think.


Last but not least, they had a sundae bar!  Our options were Vanilla, Chocolate, and Swirl of Dreyer’s non-fat fro yo.  It also included a small selection of toppings.  A great dessert!



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As I was running around the restaurant taking photos, a father noticed my camera and asked if I was a blogger.  He mentioned that his daughter also blogs and called her over.  As she and I started chatting, I realized that I read her blog! 🙂 Hi Kristen from Swanky Dietician! It was fun running into you! Hope you enjoyed your time with your family.  The blog community is so small.  I started reading Kristen after reading Kristen from Eating RD who I started reading after she and my friend Diana from The Chic Life met in Charlotte. I love the blogger community!

Okay, back to Sweet Tomatoes! For the price and convenience, we really enjoyed Sweet Tomatoes.  It’s not a fancy restaurant and doesn’t pretend to be.  There’s a decent selection and appears to be quite family friendly.  They have seasonal themes and I imagine we’ll definitely be back in June as there’s a Strawberry theme (my favorite fruit!).


As a final tangent, we found the following card on the table.  While up getting more food, if you left the card Tomato side up, the staff would know you’re coming back. IMG_3057 If you flipped it to the other side, they would know you’ve left.

IMG_3058So, in the words of teh 10 year old customer who designed the back, See You Next Thyme 🙂

Sweet Tomatoes on Urbanspoon

Posted in Restaurants | Tagged: , , , , | 2 Comments »

Spice Market Buffet at the Planet Hollywood

Posted by Amanda @ The Hungry Wanderers on April 9, 2010

If you were to ask the Husband what his favorite buffet were in Las Vegas (and there are A LOT to choose from), he wouldn’t even hesitate to tell you that it’s the Spice Market Buffet at the Planet Hollywood Hotel (formerly the Aladdin).  On my first trip to Las Vegas from him, the only memory I have (other than my feet hurting from all of the walking that we did) was of us eating at the Spice Market Buffet with his best friend Jeff.  It was my first exposure to such an expansive buffet and I was overwhelmed.

The Husband and I have been back a handful of times to Las Vegas since that first trip and we often talk about going to this buffet but we often don’t get there.  Over the last few years, especially, the prices had gone up and we never felt hungry enough to get our money’s worth (you definitely have to prep to eat a buffet like this and eat much, much smaller meals).  However, when we showed up at the Paris, we had a coupon for the Spice Market Buffet and I’ve already told you how much I love coupons!

We finally made it a plan to go to the buffet.  The entrance is down an escalator from the Planet Hollywood casino floor.


A lot of the restaurants on the strip now have electronic menus you can scroll through at the entrance.  The Husband demonstrated this one for me 🙂


You pay up front, wait in line until a table of your party size opens up. (a view from us waiting in line)


Once you’re seated, you meet your waitress, place your drink order (non-alcoholic are included with the meal), and head on your way.  I usually have to explore first to see what’s available and make a game plan.  I like to sample a little bit of a number of things so it takes a little bit of thinking.  The stations include American, Middle Eastern, Mexican, Soup, Salad, Italian, Seafood, Bread, Asian, and DESSERT!!! IMG_2445


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IMG_2452 (sorry for no food pics! they had meat and potatoes of course 😉 )

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IMG_2457 (there was pasta too but I didn’t think it looked particularly good)



And last but not least (but no sign photo), Dessert!


IMG_2451 These pics don’t do any of the stations justice, but especially the dessert section.  There are SO many to choose from, plus cotton candy!!! I stuck with soft serve and sprinkles (because I’m a sucker for sprinkles) 🙂

Oh, the prices have gone back down and are much more reasonable now too!

Do you have a favorite Las Vegas buffet? Ever been to the Spice Market buffet?

Spice Market Buffet (Planet Hollywood) on Urbanspoon

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