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old-time buffets we loved to hate

Discussion in 'Restaurants & Buffets' started by chef, Mar 11, 2018.

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  1. chef

    chef Resident Buffetologist

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    Some of the comments on the thread about Harrahs reminded me of a few blasts from the past:
    Riviera, Sahara, CC, Stardust, Imperial Palace, Boardwalk's Surf. While we're up north, let's throw on the Strat too.
    Did I miss anyone in the category of bad buffets?
     
  2. jimboguy

    jimboguy My sloppy joe is all sloppy and no joe.

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  3. dmr

    dmr Registered Abuser

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    The old Vacation Village! (_GAG_)

    I didn't think the Stardust buffet was bad at all, however.
     
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  4. Cleo5

    Cleo5 Low-Roller

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    I don't think Sahara gets enough credit in the bad buffet competition. I remember the room being huge and dark and depressing. The old Landmark had an awful buffet too.
     
  5. pebbles

    pebbles VIP Whale

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    Some friends of ours used to think the Sahara was a great buffet. We went once with them and realised it was because it was so dark that they could steal food to take back to their room at Mardi Gras with no danger of being caught. We didn't go back, but apart from not being able to see what I was eating, it definitely wasn't the worst.

    Surf Buffet was an experience. Went once for lunch and it was really quiet, so a lot of the food was cold or otherwise unappetising. That was on our first trip and we never tried it again.

    Stardust was ok until I picked up a piece of fruit and disturbed a lot of flies that had been snuggled down in the fruit basket. That put me off a bit.

    Can't remember visiting any of the others.
     
  6. dmr

    dmr Registered Abuser

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    The fruit and salad at the Sahara Buffet were always fresh and there was quite a selection.

    The big thing with the Sahara Buffet was that it was so large and had such a wide selection that even the most picky eater could find something to enjoy. They had LONG hot and cold lines. There was also a pizza/pasta thing kinda hidden in one corner that many did not even notice. For a while they had champagne on weekend brunch, and you could get pleasantly gooned while doing breakfast. :)

    The one thing I did like about it was that, at least toward the end, they had a machine to pay, as opposed to waiting on line at the register, and it seemed like most of the time there was no line for the machine.
     
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  7. rgrif57

    rgrif57 High-Roller

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    The first time Michelle and I went to Vegas we stayed at the Sahara for 7 days, it was our 5th anniversary. We were given 2-4-1 passes to the buffet and able to get them whenever we wanted so we ended up eating there almost every day. Thank God we were young and didn't know any better. Looking back now this along with the old Boardwalk had to be what Vegas Vacation had to design there buffet after. Things were sure different in 1983 now we are going to have our 40th this year but it will be at Harrah's Cherokee. Vegas is over Shell's birthday.
     
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  8. Candy Apple

    Candy Apple VIP Whale

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    The buffet at the Maxim was horrible!
     
  9. Joe

    Joe VIP Whale

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    40+ years ago I didn't think the CC buffet was too bad. Sands also was good and the Riviera one they had in the showroom Sunday mornings was excellent.

    About 25-30 years ago we went to the Stardust buffet, which we had previously enjoyed several times until my wife bit into a piece of metal and chipped her tooth. That turned into a big to-do when we complained, but I don't remember the compensation they gave us, if any. Long time ago. The last time we ever ate there.
     
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  10. Jimbucc

    Jimbucc VIP Whale

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    I'm happy to say I have tried all of these but never had the pleasure to try The Boardwalk. The Frontier buffet was nothing to write home about either.
     
  11. leo21

    leo21 VIP Whale

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    IP was the only really bad one I've ever had. We did eat few times at Boardwalk but it was they snack counter stuff that was too cheap and too prepackaged to complain about.
     
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  12. IxAccDnf

    IxAccDnf VIP Whale

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    ate IP buffet numerous times...once was enough for me @ Boardwalk
     
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  13. pebbles

    pebbles VIP Whale

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    @dmr, I don't remember Sahara buffet being bad, just that you could barely see what you were eating. I do remember enjoying the fried chicken. It was very good. Better than I've had at some much more upscale places.

    We would have gone back, with a torch to see what we were eating. So many other places to try, so it didn't happen. I think the first visit was 2000 or 2001. We loved the casino and visited regularly until the casino closed.
     
  14. dmr

    dmr Registered Abuser

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    I don't really remember it being dark, but more along the line of having all of the ambiance of your high school cafeteria! I also remember stopping to do the massage chairs that were at the end of the hall by the buffet.
     
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  15. chef

    chef Resident Buffetologist

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    Jim,
    I'm trying to place the buffet at the Frontier. Was it still in existence when the casino closed.
     
  16. bshowell

    bshowell VIP Whale

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    I definitely hated the Sahara buffet. First Vegas buffet and was damn near inedible.
     
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  17. azlefty

    azlefty High-Roller

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    Circus circuscci remember paying about $4.50. so inexpensive, so inedible.
    Excalibur: A little more expensive, not much more edible.
    This was early to mid 1990s.

    Years later, went to a buffet downtown that reminded me of my college dorm cafeteria. I think it was either Lady luck or 4 queens.
     
  18. vegasdev

    vegasdev VIP Whale

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    I think I tried the buffet at the Frontier once. keyword: once.
    now that I think about it, the buffets 20-30 years ago were mostly horrible but very cheap. the buffets today are mostly horrible and not so cheap. you really have to shell out a lot of money for a good buffet in Vegas these days, and there are not many.
     
  19. Jimbucc

    Jimbucc VIP Whale

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    I remember it being at the far north end of the casino. I think it was north, but definitely at the end. I thought it was a buffet but it could have been a restaurant or cafe. I think we had ACG's for the place. I remember old style Vegas rounded booths to sit at. I did some research, it was called The Orchard Buffet. I think it remained until closing.
     
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2018
  20. DrLect

    DrLect Winning!

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    USED TO enjoy $1.99 or was it $2.99 breakfast buffets at Boardwalk Surf buffet -- their offerings seemed acceptable for starting the day at the time. After it departed, we enjoyed Terrible's breakfast buffet (usually comped). Terrible's was the first buffet that offered spinach as an omelette ingredient. I now always request spinach whenever I have an omelette made to order at a buffet. Early in its history, Terrible's food was well prepared and presented and a tremendous bargain.
     
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