This blog gets some tough Las Vegas questions, but this isn’t one of them: “Where can we eat in Vegas that’s nice, but not stuffy, with gourmet food at a painless price?” Our answer: Payard Bistro at Caesars Palace.
We’ve never had a disappointing meal, or even a disappointing dish, at Payard, and the value-oriented prix fixe menus make the restaurant completely irresistible.
We’re not sure what makes bread “artisan bread,” but artisans clearly know what they’re doing.
Dinner, for example, including an appetizer, entree and dessert is just $48. That’s the cost of just the entree in many restaurants.
Let’s start off with the appetizer options. Don’t fill up on bread. Advice we pretty much always ignore, of course.
Tasting the Payard Cheese Soufflé was like French kissing a unicorn. Or something.
The appetizers our party ordered were the Frisée Salad with Poached Egg and Nuesky Lardons (note: this blog would not recognize a lardon it tripped over one), the amazing Payard Cheese Soufflé with white truffle oil and Parmesan cheese (pictured above) and the Coquilles St. Jacques seared scallops.
The scallops have some fancy chapeaus, don’t they?
The entrees are just as diabolically tempting as the appetizers, and we should know, we had a taste of everyone’s in addition to our tried-and-true filet mignon. Serving “Gratin Dauphinois” with the filet, by the way, made the potatoes sound almost as good as they tasted.
Come to Daddy.
Our table also had the fish of the day, which we didn’t write down because we are a blog and not a stenographer and the melt-in-your-mouth Braised Short Ribs in a Red Wine Sauce (our photo doesn’t do it justice).
The manager’s special that evening, by the way, was the Steak Frites dish ($25, New York Strip and fries), which got raves.
Do yourself a favor and splurge on the Boursin Macaroni & Cheese side ($8), as it ranks as one of Sin City’s best.
If you were slightly larger, we would do laps in you.
Since half of Payard is a candy shop, it’s perhaps not surprising that the desserts are particularly scrumptious. The full name of the establishment is Payard Pâtisserie & Bistro, with the “pâtisserie” part being “a French or Belgian bakery that specializes in pastries and sweets.”
The word “crepe” comes from the Latin word “crispa,” meaning “curled.” Which we knew off the top of our head.
Choose from a variety of crepes, some covered with more berries than may actually exist in nature.
It’s like a berry tree exploded. They grow on trees, right?
Wrning: Treats from the pâtisserie side of Payard Pâtisserie & Bistro may cause your taste receptors to break into song.
The George V dessert: Chocolate and vanilla mousse with caramelized peanuts and a black sacher biscuit, assuming that’s a real thing.
You’ll also want to try the wine and champagne-based specialty cocktails. They’ll make your taste buds feel like they hit a Megabucks jackpot, but without all the IRS paperwork.
So, that should hold you over until you can try the prix fixe menu at Payard for yourself. Unless you’ve already tried it by biting into your computer monitor. Which would be weird, but this blog tries not to judge.
Learn more about Payard Pâtisserie & Bistro. Here’s the full Payard dinner menu (.pdf format).