Newest Review: ... the sky will darken, lightening will flash across the sky, the elephant will trumpet and the sound of rain and thunder will deafen you, ... more
Amazing atmosphere, shame about the food...
Rainforest Cafe (Las Vegas, USA)
Member Name: pink_glitter
Rainforest Cafe (Las Vegas, USA)
Advantages: amazing atmosphere, something different
Disadvantages: very loud, food was poor, very overpriced for what you get
The Rainforest Café is basically a restaurant which is designed so that it looks like you are eating inside an actual rainforest. Dark green foliage adorns the walls, aquariums full of vibrant tropical fish are dotted around the place and there are animals just about everywhere. These are not real animals (tropical fish excluded), but sort of animated ones. A huge elephant comes to life every now and then, a gorilla in the corner plays the bongos and mist rises from the trees. The Rainforest Café is not exactly the quietest place to eat either, what with the constant sound of animal noises, running water, bongo playing gorillas and of course the storms. Ah yes, I didn't mention the storms did I? Well once every half hour, the sky will darken, lightening will flash across the sky, the elephant will trumpet and the sound of rain and thunder will deafen you, before the sky clears and shooting stars (aka led lights) will flash across it. As you can tell, a very unique atmosphere for a restaurant, certainly not something that will be everyone's cup of tea, but the sort of unusual thing I can't help but love.
Outside of the restaurant is a gift shop and a swamp containing a crocodile which periodically opens its jaws menacingly. The gift shop contains all sorts of Rainforest Café branded rubbish and cleverly you have to walk through the gift shop on both the way in and the way out of the restaurant.
On our visit we were greeted by a woman dressed in safari-style clothing and taken to our table which was bright red and covered in an extremely busy pattern of fish and shells. We were seated just next to the zebra and behind the elephant - now there's a line I never thought I'd type!
The menu here is seemingly quite versatile. A selection of sandwiches, seafood and soups are available as are the usual favourites such as burgers and steak. My husband decided to order a starter of cheese sticks to share. I am not particularly a fan of cheese sticks (mozzarella coated in breadcrumbs), because I often find the cheese has dried out so I'm left with a sort of breadcrumb shell and they tend to be quite tasteless anyway. These however, were actually very nice - I'd go as far as saying the best cheese sticks I've ever had, although in all honesty my experience with cheese sticks is limited! They were served with a marinara dipping sauce, which was fine but nothing special and a little watery for me.
For the main course I toyed between a dish called Rasta Pasta and Planet Earth Pasta, before eventually deciding on the Planet Earth Pasta - pasta in garlic and marinara sauce topped with mozzarella. To be totally honest I found the food very disappointing. Despite it being a very simple dish, it didn't taste great. In fact it tasted exactly like someone had tipped a watery tin of tomatoes over a bowl of pasta then stuck lots of huge lumps of mozzarella on top. My husband said he wasn't overly impressed with his burger either, describing it as average, so that was both of us disappointed with the main course.
The price came to around $70 which also included a glass of cola for me (with free refills as is customary in most American restaurants) and a non-alcoholic fruit cocktail for my husband. At the current exchange rate that comes to about £43 and I personally didn't think it was worth that, especially as my meal looked and tasted like something a student would make for the cost of pennies.
In terms of service, our waitress was very friendly although at times I did find it difficult to hear what she was saying because of all the animal noises, but I have no complaints with the staff as we were treated well enough from start to finish.
Overall, the Rainforest Café was a unique and interesting experience, which I felt was let down greatly by the food, mozzarella sticks perhaps excluded. It's not really a testament to a restaurant when mozzarella sticks are the best thing about the meal is it?! I don't feel we got value for money and I felt quite let down after we had left as I had been looking forward so much to going. Still, it is an amazing place to eat visually, although I would not hurry to go back unless I knew they had perhaps reviewed their menu.
Summary: Overpriced as it stands
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