Margaritas, beers, and strawberry daiquiris fuel a lively atmosphere inside Taco Hut, where servers transport platters of fajitas, chimichangas, and other Mexican fare in the glow of flat-screen TVs. Besides tortilla-based eats, a selection of piled-high burgers help warm up jaws before attempts to impress dates by reciting the entire phone book.
Diners at Sushi Area 909 wash down sashimi, teriyaki, and 62 fresh, creative sushi rolls with 15 types of sake and 12 different beers. The Soy Lovely roll cradles crispy shrimp tempura with tooth-easy crab and fresh lettuce ($8.95), and the Viva La Vegas roll combines four kinds of fish with avocado, cream cheese, and a roulette-wheel garnish ($7.95). Diners can also sink incisors into fresh sashimi such as the spicy-tuna plate ($10.95) or slurp tangy sauce from chicken, beef, or salmon teriyaki ($9.95–$10.95). All meals commence with a complimentary serving of edamame—tender, lightly salted soybeans perfect for launching across tables at unsuspecting dates.
Early and late risers alike can saunter over to Kickback Jack's, where a hearty menu of flapjacks and sandwiches greets customers with a slight southern twang. The restaurant's morning meals, which include french toast, eggs, and fruit juices, help jump-start morning motors or provide fuel for sustenance-starved automobiles. Sample a plate of original flapjacks ($5.99) or remix a classic fix with a pile of cookies 'n' cream flapjacks, creamily caulked with cookies-'n'-cream filling and topped with a dusting of powdered sugar and Oreo pieces ($6.99). Hearty, geometrically undefined skillets boast a bounty of fresh ingredients with combos such as the Bahama Mama, fully loaded with smoked chicken-apple sausage fried to perfection with onions, fire-grilled corn, red peppers, mushrooms, avocados, and cheese served atop baja chipotle sauce ($12.49).
There are no scissors or strands of coloring foil at The Refresh Bar & Spa. Instead, the roar of blow-dryers reigns supreme. That’s because the hairstylists’ only treatment is their signature blowout, which unfolds on posh white hairstyling chairs in the spa’s blowout bar. With regard to other services, the staff similarly places quantity beneath quality on their totem pole of priorities. For instance, licensed aestheticians brush away facial lines during the spa’s sole signature facial, and licensed massage therapists relax guests during the signature massage, which can include Swedish massage kneads, deep-tissue kneads, or both. The spa offers makeup services and has a sauna, ideal for detoxifying lounges or ice cream as short-lived as Danny Glover’s audition to play the elephant in Operation Dumbo Drop.
Wake snoozing taste buds with a hearty starter such as mozzarella suprema breadsticks adorned with natural cheese and herbs ($3.95 side; $5.95 large) before moving onto a signature fire-roasted pie. An authentic terra-cotta oven blasts RedBrick's prided circles with more than 1,000 degrees of heat, alchemically transforming their base dough into crispy gold in less than three minutes. Enjoy stationary drive-in dining with a bacon-cheeseburger pizza topped with ground beef and three kinds of cheese ($17.95 for a 14"), or graze on the veggie gourmet works, which comes loaded with a Peter Piper's worth of fresh vegetables including bell peppers, artichokes, and mushrooms, swaddled in your choice of a vegetarian red or white sauce ($17.95 for a 14"). Create-your-own pies are also available, providing palate-pleasing fill-in-the-blanks for the munching mad-libbest. Yowling sweet teeth can be silenced with a dessert of gourmet gelato or a surprise dinner visit from the dentist's wife, the librarian.
Indian cuisine is famously complex, but diners at Koyla Indian Restaurant get at least a peek at how it's prepared. The restaurant's signature cooking method is right in the name—koyla means "coal"—and chefs use its heat in full view within an open kitchen. Cinnamon and cloves, garlic and saffron fill the air as marinated chicken, shrimp, and goat simmer and sizzle. Although grounded in the cuisine of Northern India, founder Deep Singh and his chefs demonstrate a strong taste for experimentation. That's evident in the large menu's Indo-Chinese section, which holds hybrids such as chili paneer—the traditional Indian cheese spiked with house-made chili sauce. Pesto chicken and calamari masala reflect Singh's time as the proprietor of a small Italian cafe.
A mural of an especially cuddly-looking Taj Mahal brightens one wall of Koyla's softly-lit dining room. The motif continues as painted chili peppers wind around the room behind an ample buffet, served alongside champagne on the weekends.