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By R. H. Duke

The dining options at Caesars Palace run the gamut of haute French cuisine (Palace Court) to a sumptuous Roman feast (Bacchanal). In the middle of the spectrum is Neros, a quality steak and seafood restaurant located between the Olympic Palace and the Forum Casino.

A 120 seat eatery featuring the art deco atmosphere of yesteryear, Neros serves uniquely well-balanced dinners from a limited selection and does it well.  A small indoor terrace is a great area to dine with a vantage point for people watching.

Seafood ranks supreme, with appetizers and entrees offering the freshest of fish, with equally fresh accompaniments, expertly prepared and presented on colorful Misaka china.  All ingredients are perfectly well balanced and never overpowering, allowing the nuance of flavors to be detectable by the palate.

An excellent choice to begin your meal is an appetizer of sautéed crab cakes with mashed avocado, cilantro and plantain chips fried in achiote oil.  The flavor excites the palate for the entree to follow. If New England clam chowder is your favorite, Neros serves a bowl of the richest, most flavorful chowder (with a unique smoked bacon flavor) found in Las Vegas.

Selecting an entree is a toss of the coin. I highly recommend the baked salmon, expertly prepared to perfection, with a crisp glaze and served with a tasty and delicate Du Puy lentils, sweet cipollini onions, and sautéed young spinach.  An equally outstanding entree is the pan-roasted halibut, served with braised baby artichokes, steamed clams topped with a touch of lobster oil, and sumptuous saffron flavored cous cous--an Epicurean's delight.

If dessert is your weakness, perhaps the napoleon of poached pear with almond brittle and white chocolate would be a perfect ending to satisfy that craving. My favorite is the lemon tart served with spun sugar, fresh berries, and Chantilly cream, again well-balanced for that great ending to an outstanding dinner.

For the finale of all finales, try Cafe Nero--a mixture of high quality coffee, Bailey's Irish Cream, Creme de Cacao, and Grand Marnier--a potent drink with a long finish.

Neros' wine list, or should I say wine book, lists selections of domestic and imported wines representing virtually every label, vintage, appellation and origin imaginable, in addition to the finest of cognacs, armagnacs, and ports available.

Service is efficient, courteous, and never rushed. For a complete meal-- appetizer, entree, and dessert--expect a bill of approximately $50.00 and up, excluding tax, tip, wine.

Neros is open from 5:30to 11:00pm daily. For reservation, please phone (702) 731-7110.

R.H. Duke is a former restaurateur and a Las Vegas restaurant critic who says “Fine Dining is one of Life’s Greatest Pleasures!”


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