When the folks at Palms Place took over the bright, airy, poolside restaurant space formerly home to Simon in March, they wisely decided not to make big changes. In fact, it’s hard to find any major design changes. There’s the ghost of a sushi bar along one wall, never a good fit for the room but now completely purposeless; the closest thing you’ll get to sushi at Café 6 is a burger with crab on it. (More on that later). But this sixth-floor restaurant away from any casino craziness always felt uniquely relaxing, and its lazy charms are intact.
All the change is on the menu. Open for lunch and dinner, Café 6 is burger-centric, an easy match for the environment and probably more accessible and convenient than ever. Among the appetizers, salads, sandwiches, sliders, sides and a couple of simple entrées, nothing checks in over the $20 mark.
The bottled beer list is seasonally inspired, still registering quite a few brisk ciders, sours and saisons that pair nicely with fried fare like the exceptional salty crunchy pickles ($6.95) or buttermilk chicken tenders ($10.95). Note to the app-happy: Café 6’s fried goodies all come with extensive dipping sauce options, from sriracha mayo to Tabasco ranch, and that’s always a positive.
How ’bout those burgers? Well, you can build your own from an impressive list of meats, cheeses and toppings, or you can go the mini-route with an order of three sliders. If you go small, get the mix-and-match option ($14.95) and be sure to include the Burn Your Face Off chicken slider in your trio. It’s a perfectly crispy, juicy bite with provolone, coleslaw and a seriously kicking habanero hot sauce on a sweet bun. The full-sized version ($14.95) uses a grilled chicken breast instead of the crispy stuff and adds pickled jalapeños and a roasted poblano pepper.
Even when dining at a creative burger joint like this one, I tend to lean toward more simple structures. Café 6 burgers don’t care. The Thanksgiving-inspired turkey burger ($13.95) uses apple-cranberry marmalade. The Short Rib Sloppy Joe ($15.95) contains an Angus beef patty and a pile of tender shortrib, plus an onion ring. Similarly, the impressive Smoke Out ($17.95) pairs burger with barbecue brisket on a pretzel bun. With all these crazy options, I recommend going the most crazy. The Land & Sea ($19.95) stacks crab dynamite, red onion, fennel, radish, kale, havarti and tomato tartar sauce on a fluffy Hawaiian bun, and somehow—I honestly don’t know how—it all works. The sweet, briny blast of the crab mixture against the beef with the slightly bitter kale is one of the oddest burger bites you’ll experience, and it’s pretty great.
There are plenty of other sandwich options, substantial salads and indulgent shakes to round out this simple, fun menu, plus Nutella donuts, banana splits and other desserts. Café 6 may not be true destination dining, but it definitely satisfies.
Café 6 Palms Place, 702-944-3292. Daily, 11 a.m.-2 p.m. & 5-10 p.m.