Become a Vegas VIP
Editors Note: Thank you to our friend Beth who graciously provided this update from The Wynn Buffet the first week it was opened (Thursday, June 25th, 2020).
The Covid-19 pandemic has wreaked havoc across the world in 2020. After months of quarantines and lockdowns, with cancellations of sporting events and concerts to shutting down an entire city such as Las Vegas, we are finally starting to return to a small sense of normalcy, or what will be known as the “new normal”.
Within that new way of doing things, Las Vegas has reopened, and part of that includes the infamous buffets. Having recently visited Las Vegas, we were privileged enough to have dinner at one of the best buffets on the strip, located at Wynn.
First and foremost, as of writing this, one can only dine by making a reservation. Walk-ups are not accepted. (The group in front of us was turned away as we waited to speak with the hostess). We had made our reservation one day prior, and there was only one time slot available, at 6:45. We jumped on it!!
Upon entry, you are asked if you would prefer a paper menu or a QR code to view digitally through your phone. (We chose paper). Much like normal, you are seated, though the tables are not all filled to allow for social distancing, and your drink order taken. That’s pretty much where your typical buffet experience ends.
The menu is divided into sections, and this is how you place your order. There is no longer walking around to various food stations to view each item and fill your plate to the brim. A server comes alone with a handheld device and presses a button on their screen once you make a menu selection. They do advise not ordering everything at once, as your table will quickly fill up.
My husband and I started off with a soup for me, and a salad for him, as well as a charcuterie plate, baked oysters and tuna poke nachos. Now you’re probably reading this thinking, oh my gosh, these people can really eat, but the pictures will speak volumes. Each item is made for individual portions.
For example, the oysters were two to a serving, the nachos included maybe five chips. What I really liked about this was how it gave the ability to try so many different items without necessarily having that guilty feeling of taking perhaps a larger portion and only eating a bite.
Once your order is entered by the server, a ticket is sent to the station where the food is typically located. From here, it’s obvious that there are servers dedicated to sections that could receive a numerous quantity of tickets at once, and will bring your item out with several other tables as well.
Essentially, depending on that server and if that food item is ready, will determine how fast your food will come out. Honestly, there’s no specific timetable, but for the most part, the items actually came out quickly. The day we went, the sides were quite slow, so much so, that we thought they forgot.
Following our appetizers and salad/soup, we moved onto what we called the main dishes. We tried items such as beef ribs, prime rib, chicken and crab legs (which actually was a larger serving), as well as some side dishes, corn, mac n cheese, cauliflower. Again, while we were able to take a bite or two of each other’s items, they are individual portions.
At this point, I’m sure you all get the theme, order, and food comes out, so it sounds like we were constantly stuffing our faces, but I will interject our personal experience. It turns out that our particular server worked in another area of the hotel, and had been asked to help with rolling out the new buffet world we live in. With that being said, she was incredibly slow, so there was quite a bit of down time between courses.
Again, in following the theme, you would think dessert is next, but we didn’t feel quite fulfilled, so ordered duplicates of items we had loved. For me, that was a second-order of tuna poke nachos. I overheard another table order a second prime rib. I wanted to include this so nobody thinks they can’t order more than one of an item.
The dessert selection is huge, but I was stuffed so tried one item, while my husband tried another. However, we saw tables ordering basically one of each. No guilt should ever be had in the buffet setting.
Overall, we were there for an hour and a half (due to our slow server. I don’t think this is typical), and left pleasantly stuffed. My personal opinion is such that the food temperatures at a buffet are lukewarm at best, and this was no different, with perhaps one or two exceptions.
The servers bring out very warm plates, but the food on it typically isn’t. However, the quality and quantity of items available certainly made up for it. We did enjoy just about everything we ate. If this is the new normal, I’m ok with it!