If you go to Greektown Casino's new Brizola, you'll likely come away talking about its gorgeous dining room and its sleek iPad menus filled with luminous photos of every dish it serves.
The restaurant, which opened in December, is one of the city's most attractive dining rooms -- a serene, white-tablecloth oasis decorated in rich earth tones with natural stone accents, walnut woodwork and a soaring wall of windows at one end.
You'll notice the lovely dark-gray carpeting sprinkled with petal-shaped, cream-colored dots and the big, handsome circular bar in the center of the room. The napkins are crisp, the glassware is delicate and the silverware is heavy and handsome.
The iPad menus -- still uncommon in metro Detroit restaurants -- are conversation pieces, too. Using them is more time-consuming -- but also more engaging -- than reading regular menus. No one can resist tapping the photos.
Unless you're a Greektown Casino patron, though, you may also come away talking about some less satisfying elements -- like the annoyance of getting to the restaurant and prices that seem steep.
For customers of the casino, Brizola's location on the third floor adjacent to the gaming areas is a great convenience; the restaurant is just inside the glass doors at the end of the room.
But for outsiders, walking through a crowded, noisy gaming floor isn't the best way to begin a nice dinner. Our party saw few directional signs for the restaurant and took some wrong turns inside the casino trying to find it; perhaps we just missed the signs. Diners must re-enter the gaming areas to reach the restrooms because there are none in the restaurant.
Brizola's approachable menu -- featuring steaks, chops and seafood -- isn't necessarily more expensive than that at other steakhouses. But with the cheapest entrée priced at $29 for a chicken dish and others choices starting at $38, diners don't have many outs. Burgers and smaller steaks are not available.
Four citrus-glazed scallops with risotto are $42; Colorado double lamb chops with root vegetables are $48; salmon with fingerling potatoes and cauliflower is $39. The four prime steaks are $48 and $52; market-priced Wagyu steaks are in the $80s.
A la carte sides, $8-$18, are generously sized. Our starter of fried rock shrimp ($14), tossed in a too-sweet sauce, was more than enough for two.
Our 22-ounce bone-in rib eye steak ($52) was very good, cooked exactly medium-rare as ordered and served with a trio of dipping sauces. The scallops were nicely cooked, too. Our $12 bacon-wrapped, loaded, twice-baked potato, however, was too dry.
With its style and convenience, Brizola looks like a win for Greektown Casino patrons, especially those dining on casino credits. It may be less of a sure thing for outsiders.
Brizola is open 5-10 p.m. Sunday, Wednesday and Thursday and 5-11 p.m. Friday-Saturday; closed Monday-Tuesday. (555 E. Lafayette, Detroit; www.greektowncasino.com/brizola.html and 313-309-2499)