October 25, 2004
We ate at Pearl the first evening we were in Las Vegas. We had received a $25 credit towards any of the hotel restaurants (with the notable exception of Emeril's New Orleans Fish House) and decided to use it at Pearl, which bills itself as contemporary Chinese restaurant. It turned out to be a good decision.
We walked in around 7pm without reservations and were a little uncomfortable to see the place sparsely filled. The atmosphere is Asian-chic--lots of black, red, and silver. The tables are beautifully set and attention is paid to detail, down to the small silver fish that is used as a chopstick holder.
Service was impeccable and unpretentious. Our waiter was attentive to our table (perhaps because he didn't have many tables?). We started with the Dungeness Crab Spring Rolls, which were hot and crispy. We then moved onto the Seafood Wor Wonton Soup, which was good, but nothing to write home about. It was similar to any wonton soup you could get at a nicer Chinese restaurant. My husband ordered the Wok-Fried Sea Bass for his entree. The actual fish was flaky, but a little bland, but the sauce that came on the side was absolutely wonderful. We were trying to figure out what it was--our best guess would be a mixture of excellent quality soy sauce, diced green onions, sesame oil, and a little je ne sais quoi . . .
I ordered the Chicken with Crispy Noodles, which was excellent. The noodles were crunchy on the outside of the dish, but soft on the inside to soak up all of the sauce. It was one of the side dishes, but plenty for one person (and also one of the less expensive options on the menu).
At the end of the meal, a dessert cart was rolled to our table and about eight different desserts were presented to us. We chose one with a small chocolate cake with passion fruit amd raspberry sauces on the side. We didn't care too much for the passion fruit, but the raspberry was very good. Unfortunately, we received a bit of sticker shock when the bill came to us and the dessert was $12! We had not asked how much the desserts were, and there was no dessert menu.
Despite our reservations about there not being many people in Pearl at 7pm, they started arriving at 8pm. By the time we left, it was filling up quite nicely. Overall, I would recommend Pearl, particularly to those staying in the MGM Grand.
From journal Vegas Alternatives