Wednesday, February 13, 2013

The Cafeteria at the Borgata Review

This is for a series of posts for the Borgata Hotel & The Water Club including: Bobby Flay SteakWolfgang Puck American Grille, Wolfgang Puck American Grille [2], The CafeteriaTony Luke'sN.O.W.N.O.W. [2]MetropolitanSun RoomSun Room [2]Old Homestead Steakhouse, Old Homestead Steakhouse [2], Fat Burger28 WestGelato, the Borgata BuffetIzakayaBread and Butter, and Fornelletto

If you're an avid poker player (no better place to play poker than at the Borgata) and you need quick eats or just need a break to prevent yourself from going on tilt, just turn the corner to your right as you exit the poker room and head down the escalator to the Cafeteria.

There's a centralized, pristine-white seating area with a variety of quick and easy bites offered along the borders. Offerings include brain food for your inner poker child at Lettuce Head, cheese steaks from Tony Luke's, Ben & Jerry's to satisfy your sweet tooth, Villa Pizza for some Italian eats, Panda Express to churn out Americanized Chinese food, Hibachi-San to gorge yourself on over-salted Japanese grilled items, and Fat Burger, which offers grilled to-order-burgers 24-7 (except Sundays from 11PM to 6AM). How's that for a run on?

The GF and my first stop (well really just mine) was to Tony Luke's - a South Philly bastion for cheese steaks.

I've never had the chance to stop by the original location, but I've been to this outpost quite a few times now. And for what it's worth - it's the best iteration of the Philly cheese steak that is located in Philly. Technically though, I suppose we're in Jersey. I really do need to stop by the original location.

But on with the food! 
Cheese Steak Combo ($13.50)
Provolone, fried onions, french fries, medium soda

The rib-eye itself was perfect - slightly greasy from the marbled beef, but without drenching the structure of the fresh roll a la Jim's Steaks on South Street, this cheese steak will satisfy anyone's inner glutton. The provolone is actually interspersed throughout the meat, which is a plus in my book. The 'fried' onions were plentiful and offered a satisfying bite to the cheese steak.

But the kicker? Crispy, creamy fries, which were promptly anointed as 'best in life' by the GF. These came out pipping hot and were truly fresh. I could eat a bucket of these. And since we're in Jersey ... in the words of Pauly D - oh yeaaaaaaaaaaah! Buddy.

Of course, the GF decided to head over to Lettuce ... well, head. Not my cup of tea, but lady's choice.

The options here are plentiful, from the type of greens, dressing, and toppings. The GF opted for the 'Green Head.'

They didn't have green peppers, but the GF was fine with this as she preferred chickpeas, which she was able to substitute at no additional cost.

Green Head ($7.99)
Mixed lettuce, peppers chickpeas, cucumbers, avocado, mozzarella.  

The fresh mozzarella was sliced from whole mozzarella balls, which added a nice creamy touch along with the ripe avocados. The crunch from the fresh cucumbers was refreshing. The light balsamic dressing offered some tang to the greens, though the salad was a bit overdressed. I suppose you can always ask for the dressing on the side though. There was an accompanying multi-grain roll that offered a nice change of pace from chomping on the rabbit food salad, though it wasn't warm or fresh-baked.

Overall, if you need to get a quick bite to eat and have eclectic tastes or just crave a variety of options, head to the Cafeteria. It's spacious, clean, and emanates casual dining at its finest. 

The Cafeteria at the Borgata
1 Borgata Way  
Atlantic City, NJ 08401
(609) 317-1000

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