I’ve become a big fan of dining during happy hours at Las Vegas restaurants and bars. In addition to getting a bargain price on food and beverages, the food portions tend to be smaller, which is better for my lighter appetite. Another benefit is that service tends to be a bit faster when dining at a bar, so if you want a good dinner, but don’t have a lot of time to spare, a happy hour dinner sure beats fast food any day.
Postrio, the Wolfgang Puck restaurant on St. Mark’s Square at the Venetian, has been on my list for awhile now. It’s got a classy vibe, as most of the restaurants on St. Mark’s Square do, but more importantly, it has a happy hour. Actually, “happy hour” is a misnomer at Postrio. In fact, their “happy hour” specials are available all day, every day. At the time I visited, all food and drink items on the happy hour menu were $7 each. Quite a screaming deal, as far as I’m concerned.
So I was happy (see what I did there?) to check it out last year when I was staying at the Palazzo. I arrived around 6:45pm on a Wednesday night and had a show (Rock of Ages) booked for 8, so I didn’t have time for a table meal. People were just starting to arrive to get tables for dinner, but thankfully, the bar was nearly empty. By the time I left at 7:30, it was starting to get crowded at the bar, too.
Service was fine, though not exceptional in any way. I did get in and out of there in plenty of time to get to my show, which was all that mattered to me. My bartender was polite and efficient and easy on the eyes, though not overly friendly. I felt comfortable dining at the bar. It’s a great location if you are feeling social and/or enjoy people-watching while you eat.
There is no better people-watching available in Las Vegas than St. Mark’s Square. During dinner, I got to enjoy some musicians performing on the stage not far away and watch an Asian tour group walk through–a long line of tourists led by a guide waving a yellow flag above her head. They hustled through once going toward Las Vegas Boulevard, and about ten minutes later, they came back through headed in the other direction, looking like a mama duck and her ducklings. I’m used to seeing that sort of thing in Europe, but I’ve never seen it in Las Vegas. It was a curious sight.
But let’s get to the food and drinks. How were they? I ordered the white sangria, which may well have been the best sangria I’ve ever had. It was loaded with tiny pieces of diced apple, and the fruit really added to the flavor. I wanted to scoop the apple out and eat it for dessert, but I thought might be a little classless, so I refrained.
I ordered two of the small plates for dinner. The first was the mini-grilled cheese sandwich with Vermont cheddar. As a Vermonter, how could I not? Grilled cheese doesn’t sound like anything special, but it was better than I expected. You really can taste the cheddar. It was comfort food at its finest.
I also had the tandoori chicken skewers. When I ordered them, I saw they were supposed to come with tzatziki for dipping. But when they arrived in front of me, I saw no tzatziki. So I mentioned this to my bartender, and he pointed out the smear of bright green sauce they were sitting in. (There was so little of it, you can’t see it in the photo below.) That was the tzatziki, he said.
I’ve had tzatziki before many times. That did not look like tzatziki to me. It looked—and tasted–more like an avocado sauce of some kind (it was delicious, though). In any case, it certainly wasn’t enough to dip the chicken in, so he gave me a cup of it on the side. Yummy. It paired nicely with the tandoori chicken.
All in all, while Postrio’s happy hour menu doesn’t quite live up to the (admittedly) high standards of American Fish, I walked away with a happy stomach. And once you add in the atmosphere of St. Mark’s Square and the people-watching, it’s a fine option on the upper end of the Strip. I’d gladly eat here again. Maybe even for a whole hour next time.
Have you tried the happy hour menu at Postrio? What did you think of it?