Sunday, Aug. 25, 2019 | 2 a.m.
There’s always something new at the Forum Shops at Caesars Palace and right now, it’s all about restaurants. A wave of new eateries is about to make a significant splash at the Las Vegas Strip retail destination, starting with the month-old Water Grill.
The Los Angeles seafood institution recently took over the centrally located spot in the luxury mall famously occupied by Wolfgang Puck’s Spago for nearly 27 years. Now open at Bellagio, Spago at the Forum Shops closed in January 2018 and left a significant void in the mall’s restaurant roster, which includes other icons like the Palm, Il Mulino, Joe’s Seafood, Prime Steak & Stone Crab and Sushi Rok and popular chains like the Cheesecake Factory, Planet Hollywood and Carmine’s.
Opened by King’s Seafood Co. founders and cousins Sam and Jeff King in downtown L.A. 30 years ago, Water Grill also has locations in Santa Monica, San Diego, Orange County and Dallas, and the formula hasn’t changed for the new 14,000-square-foot Las Vegas Strip location. The classic bistro décor includes a slight nautical theme with lots of gold hues, all focused on a big copper-top bar in the center of the space. Serving lunch and dinner, the Water Grill menu offers oceanic favorites like clam chowder, crab cakes, chilled shellfish and a New England lobster roll, plus sushi and an extensive selection of fresh oysters. Entrée options include wild Alaskan halibut, Washington Dungeness crab and Ecuadorian shrimp and a 20-ounce “cowboy” ribeye steak.
Water Grill is located in the Forum Shops just off the Caesars Palace casino entrance, but on the other end of the mall — near its Las Vegas Boulevard pedestrian entrance — three other new-to-Vegas restaurants are on the way.
True Food Kitchen, which will open its first Las Vegas store at Downtown Summerlin this fall, is building a restaurant and bar as the centerpiece of the Forum Shops’ first floor just off the Strip, which will be one of the biggest locations of its healthy eating concept. The Slanted Door, an acclaimed Vietnamese restaurant from the Mission District in San Francisco, is set to open nearby this fall. And Frida Mexican Cuisine, another L.A. import, is taking over the corner nook previously occupied by Border Grill. No word yet on that opening date.