Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Forest Buffet--South Lake Tahoe, NV

Tonight, shortly after arriving in South Lake Tahoe famished (Jenny and I skipped lunch in order to shepherd the twins through a train museum in Sacramento--the twins had hot dogs for lunch, by the way), we bolted for the Forest Buffet at Harrah's. We got there shortly after 6:00 and waited in line for about 25 minutes before getting our table, which offered a beautiful 18th floor view of Tahoe.

I got to business right away and grabbed the best meats I could find. Pictured below, clockwise from the top, are the baby back ribs, chicken breast, ham, prime rib, top sirloin, baked salmon and roast turkey. In general, the birds and fish were overdone, but the prime rib and ribs were tender. At first I loved the sauce on the ribs. But, after five or six ribs I couldn't help but detect a chemical flavor to the sauce.

Overlooked by many were sushi, as they were tucked away in a corner of the restaurant. Among the rolls were unagi, Philly, California, tempura shrimp and spicy crab.

The dessert assortment was eye-catching and included chocolate covered strawberries, berry tart, cream puffs, cheesecake, cherry pie, lemon custard and chocolate cupcake. The stawberries were delicious, but not distinctive. The cherry pie was notable for its crust, which was soft and buttery. The tart was ordinary.

The fruit arrangement was limited, with just honeydew, cantaloupe, and pineapple. What really stood out was the pineapple, which came in big, sweet, juicy chunks and was a highlight of our dinner.

All four of us came away full. in the end, my wife thought the buffet was merely a large assortment of average quality food. Perhaps this is as objective an assessment as either of us can make, as I was starving and would have been thrilled to eat taro paste. In any case, the buffet wasn't cheap, especially for the five-year olds, who set us back $10 each. The adults paid $19 apiece.