Open or Closed? The Dish on Buffets at Pennsylvania Casinos

Posted By Katie Kohler on July 30, 2021

Pennsylvania casinos aren’t necessarily known for their buffets like the all-you-can eat feasts in Las Vegas and Atlantic City. But shooting craps and playing Lightning Link slots builds an appetite and sometimes the best value for your dollar or comps is a buffet.

Pennsylvania casinos are as close to “normal” as ever. They are open, masks are optional for vaccinated guests, the plexiglass is down, drink service returned to the casino floor and smoking is permitted again. However, most buffets at Pennsylvania casinos remain closed.

Buffets at Pennsylvania casinos

(reviews from Trip Advisor are based out of five stars)

Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course

  • Epic Buffet: 3 stars (108 reviews)
  • Status: Per Hollywood Casino’s website “Epic Buffet, Mountain View, Skybox, Homestretch, and Main Event venues will remain closed.”

Rivers Casino Pittsburgh

  • Grand View Buffet: 3.5 stars (115 reviews) 
  • Status: Currently closed

Wind Creek Casino 

  • Steelworks Buffet and Grill: 3.5 stars (199 reviews) 
  • Status: Not a buffet currently. Wind Creek’s website says the Steelworks Buffet serves “reuben sandwiches, applewood smoked bacon mac and cheese, ribs and more. At this time, à la carte menu is only available.”

Mount Airy Casino 

  • The Market at Mount Airy: 3.5 stars (358 reviews)
  • Status: Open and food is served in ready-to-eat containers. Lots to choose from here including buffet usuals like  chicken, spare ribs, fried shrimp, cheesecake, our pasta station and more. Prime rib available on Sundays.

Mohegan Sun Pocono

  • Seasons Buffet: 3.5 stars (203 Google reviews) 
  • Status: Closed until further notice.

Presque Isle Downs

  • The Backstretch Buffet: 4 stars (49 reviews)
  • Status: “We have currently suspended operations at Backstretch Buffet” according to the website.

Pennsylvania casinos with no buffets

The following casinos in Pennsylvania do not have buffets but offer various other options for dining.

  • Harrah’s Casino Philadelphia
  • Rivers Casino Philadelphia 
  • Valley Forge Casino 
  • Live! Casino Philadelphia
  • Parx 
  • The Meadows. The Carvery used to be a buffet now it offers new American casual sit-down menu.
  • Live! Casino Pittsburgh
  • Lady Luck Nemacolin

Buffets at Atlantic City casinos

Borgata reopened the Borgata Buffet for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and Sunday brunch  in early June.

Palace Court Buffet at Caesars is listed as temporarily closed on Yelp and is now listed as Palace Court Pizza on Caesars Atlantic City website. Waterfront Buffet at Harrah’s Casino is marked as permanently closed on Yelp and Google.

Why casinos aren’t opening buffets

Shady Maple Smorgasboard, the largest buffet in Lancaster County and favorite gorge-fest of Pennsylvanians has reopened. National buffet brands like Cicis and Golden Corral have resumed all-you-can-eat feasts in some, but not all, locations.

Why don’t casinos have an appetite to reopen buffets?

There are a number of factors like:

  • Rising food costs
  • Lack of staff
  • The close-quarters, high-touch aspect of buffets

Ceasars Entertainment CEO Tom Reeg seems ready to end buffets. He said they lose $3 million on every buffet at its properties.

““We’re going to be smarter about how we’re in the food and beverage business.”

Looking for something to eat at casinos? There are other other dining options. Or as Reeg said,

“God forbid they stop at McDonald’s on the way home.”

Lead image from Dreamstime

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Katie Kohler

Katie Kohler is a Philadelphia-area based award-winning journalist. She is the Managing Editor at PlayPennsylvania and covers the Pennsylvania gambling industry with an emphasis on sports betting, online casino/poker and the lottery.

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