The oft-maligned Emperor’s Buffet at Imperial Palace knows what some are saying about it, and it’s not pleased.
Oh, this blog has heard the rumors. And we, too, have been a tad reluctant to visit the buffet at the IP, but after a surprise drop-in, we’re happy (and relieved) to report most, if not all, of the buffet-bashing is unwarranted!
Let’s get something out in the open right off the bat.
The decor at the Emperor’s Buffet is gawd-awful. It’s like somebody let Bobby Brady do the decorating after returning from a Hawaiian vacation. We have no idea what Polynesian masks have to do with emperors. At all. And the cafeteria-style seats and tacky teal booths have the potential to put a ding in one’s enjoyment of the buffet.
But, here’s the thing. This blog doesn’t make its buffet-going decisions based on decor.
And here’s the other thing: The folks at the buffet, and the Imperial Palace, know the decor sucks! That’s why (world exclusive here) there are plans for a complete overhaul of the interior of the Emperor’s Buffet.
The renovations will begin in December, according to our source, and will take about three months to complete. The buffet will remain open, but the changes will be dramatic. More details as they become available, but the renovations are unrelated to The Linq project, in case you were wondering.
Like we said, though, you can’t eat decor, and besides, one person’s tacky is another person’s kitsch, so let’s move on to the food!
We tried just about everything at the Emperor’s Buffet, and we found lots of tasty dishes that were hot, fresh and solidly above par in terms of selection, preparation and palate appeal. Nothing like what we’d heard. Hearty, flavorful buffet goodness.
Selections included steamed crab legs, meatballs, rigatoni with marinara, BBQ pork rubs, Kung Pao chicken, broccoli beef, fried shrimp, grilled steak (the only serious fail in the whole buffet), roast pork, salmon, fried chicken, pizza, sushi, fried shrimp and lots of other tempting dishes.
A popular carving station served up roast turkey and prime rib. Succulent, and we defy you to think otherwise after you try it.
Desserts were plentiful, of course. Fresh and pleasing to the eye, too.
The soft serve easily met this blog’s exacting standards.
Again, we dropped in, unannounced, so the photos presented here weren’t the result of a team of food stylists or anything. And we made sure to get up close, so you’re seeing the food as it is served to guests in the buffet.
Oh, almost forgot, we found the servers to be friendly and helpful, too.
Overall, if you can embrace the kitschy decor, the Emperor’s Buffet can definitely hold its own among Las Vegas Strip buffets, at least in the opinion of this award-winning Dining and Entertainment blog. (Yes, we’re milking that for all it’s worth.)
Is the buffet at Imperial Palace going to be voted best in Vegas like the Carnival World Buffet at Rio Vegas for 30 years in a row or whatever? Probably not. Is it a worthy stop for those enjoying a Buffet of Buffets all-access pass? Definitely.
So, give it a try, and let us know what you think.
We took photos of just about everything in the buffet, so you’d know we weren’t just picking the most photogenic offerings. Enjoy our exclusive photo gallery, below.
Imperial Palace Buffet