Buffets have been a tradition in Las Vegas for decades. Nearly every major hotel offers a buffet filled with salad, a carving station, the sides and desserts.
The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas has turned tradition on its ear with the Wicked Spoon buffet.
As soon as you walk in you'll notice that it's not like any other typical buffet in town -- it feels more like an elegant sit-down restaurant. The buffet is tucked away in a back corner of the hotel near its convention space. As a result the atmosphere is calm and quiet. The room is tastefully decorated in warm browns, golds and oranges. There are several large artistic glass fixtures hanging from the ceiling and walls are adorned with some of the modern artwork The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas is known for.
At the Wicked Spoon you don't need to worry about filling up on one thing too quickly or accidentally getting a large helping of something you don't really like. Most items are served in a reasonable portion on a small individual plate or in a tiny individual metal saucepan.
Much like any buffet, the Wicked Spoon is divided into sections, beginning with a salad area. Don't expect the traditional bowl of lettuce with dressings and toppings, though. Instead you'll find items like Italian panzanella bread salad, chickpea salad, hummus and pita slices and a nice selection of pungent cheeses.
A seafood station serves a variety of shellfish, as well as grilled salmon and a mini basket of fish and chips. The breading on the fish is crisp and flavorful and it is served with tartar sauce or a tasty remoulade.
The Wicked Spoon has a traditional carving station, serving things you'd expect like prime rib and pork, but you'll also find out-of-the-ordinary items like roasted bone marrow and lamb.
There are a wide variety of side dishes to accompany the meat. Don't miss the truffled scalloped potatoes. Other choices include "angry" mac and chesse, which has a smoky, chipotle flavor. Vegetables include a delicious brown butter roasted cauliflower and a ricotta creamed spinach.
An Italian food station is filled with a variety of pizzas and pastas you'd see in the finest Italian restaurant including an asiago gnocchi in lamb ragout; a goat cheese ravioli; and a tomato and asparagus risotto.
The last station is an Asian food bar that offers items like orange chicken, Korean barbecued ribs, sushi and tiny Chinese takeout containers filled with just the right amount of rice or noodles.
Drinks to accompany your meal are plentiful. Each table is set with a bottle of water and soft drinks are available from your server. You can order cocktails and wine is available from an enomatic machine that dispenses three different sized pours, priced accordingly. The table is also set with a bottle of Rodney Strong merlot, which you can purchase for $20.
With all of the amazing food choices at the Wicked Spoon, it is hard to pace yourself and save room for dessert, but trust us, you must.
The dessert bar features an impressive and colorful array of treats including enormous chocolate-covered strawberries, red velvet cookies and pastries. For those with health concerns, there is a large case of sugar-free desserts.
Dessert highlights include a decadent Godiva cake pop and a molten chocolate lava cake -- a somewhat bitter dark chocolate cake swimming in a pool of warm caramel. The absolute must-try is the Wicked Spoon's gelato bar, which serves the rich, creamy Italian treat in a wide variety of flavors including strawberry balsamic and a mouthwatering salted caramel peanut. The refreshing mint chocolate flavor is the perfect way to end your meal.