Right in the middle of Golden Nugget’s casino floor, Lillie’s Noodles offers everything you’d want out of an upscale Asian dining experience.
From the high, extra-long dining tables lined with chairs, to the giant chopsticks hanging from the ceiling, there is about as much to look at as choose from in the elegantly styled restaurant.
Featuring everything from sushi to egg rolls and even classic Japanese desserts, Lillie’s has something to please everyone.
What we liked: Almost everything. For an upscale experience, it was a pleasant surprise that we arrived during happy hour, which lasts from 3 to 6 p.m. Mondays through Fridays.
The happy hour menu features small plates of items such as edamame, egg rolls and pot stickers for just $3. It pairs well with the $4 beer menu, which includes typical beers such as Budweiser, Heineken and Coronas, plus Asian bottled beers such as Asahi, Kirin Ichiban and Sapporo.
Sushi rolls and house wines (both $5) also made it to the happy hour menu, making it the perfect place to grab a quick bite between hands of poker.
Our meal started with the small plate of crab Rangoon ($11), and it wouldn’t have been too disappointing if that was the end of the meal. In six little pockets, kind of resembling misshapen fortune cookies, was a warm mix of crab and cream cheese that was just plain divine. With a delectable, spicy plum sauce for dipping, it was definitely the highlight of the meal. With this dish, it was easy to tell that the craftsmanship in the food was extremely important at Lillie’s.
The nugget specialty roll ($18) was another favorite on the menu. The dish featured three servings of what looked like colorful tumbleweeds laid atop spicy ponzu dipping sauce. Entwined in each tempura-fried ball was shrimp, scallops and Asian vegetables. It was scrumptious and fun to pull apart, and it may be a way to get your kids to eat their veggies.
Another specialty roll worth trying is the hand grenade ($14). Resembling three snowballs, these rolls were surrounded by rice that had a lightly crisped outer edge. Inside the tempura crunch was a mix of scallops, shrimp and masago that ended up being fused together to form yellow mounds. The taste on the inside was simple and not overpowering, but it wasn’t the most appetizing center to look at. Hopefully, the people in your party are open-minded.
On the noodles side of things, guests have options such as the Hong Kong crisp seafood noodles ($16). This dish includes shrimp, scallops and squid, all cooked perfectly, as well as mixed vegetables including baby bok choy. In an extraordinarily light white cream sauce, the seafood and veggies completely covered the noodles, which were lightly cooked, but with crispy ends.
For dessert, Lillie’s features mochi ($8), a traditional Japanese ice cream dish that is served in little pockets of flavor. Rotating flavors include coffee, chocolate and mango, but we got to try red bean ice cream and green tea. Three servings came quartered on a long plate with raspberries and whipped cream. The green tea was delicious and sweet, and was even better than the green tea mochi they have at Tao Las Vegas. It was the perfect light ending to a spectacular meal.
Another dessert worth trying is the rich pineapple cheesecake, especially because everything on the dessert menu is just $8.
What we didn’t like: When it comes to Lillie’s, a complaint can’t be found about the food or the service. Both were exceptional. But some patrons might have trouble with the location.
The restaurant opens up to the casino floor, meaning that at busy times of the day, it could be louder than you’d like. It is great for people-watching, but the tables right by the restaurant allowed smoking. Our table was lucky enough to only see one smoker who didn’t stay for the entire meal.
Insiders Tip: If the open-casino idea bothers you, ask for a seat toward the back corner of the restaurant or just sit at the bar and catch the game on two flat-screen TVs.
The Bottom Line: Lillie’s is a great place to get wined and dined. Just be careful, because most of the food isn’t filling, so you could easily empty your wallet sampling its delicious fare.