Let me apologize in advance to everyone I'm going to offend! I cannot understand anyone going to AC unless it's a necessity such as the trade show where I was an exhibitor. I had no choice. Atlantic City makes Vegas look downright elegant.
If you are a non-smoker, prepare for hell. Non-smoking sections in restaurants are not mandated by law and from our limited experience most restaurants don't grasp this concept. I think that smoking is more endemic in AC than in most parts of Europe.
We stayed at the Hilton and arriving late decided to eat at the steakhouse in the hotel. Our first experience with no non-smoking section. The prices were absolutely outrageous! $30 entrees - gimme a break. Food was OK, not great, certainly not worth the price.
Second night was Captain Young's. The only place that had a non-smoking section - I think. I say that because there were only two other tables occupied on a Thursday night. My grilled tuna was good, vegies were overdone and limp. Wine and beer selection was limited. Price reasonable.
Third night we escaped from AC to Margate and Maloney's restaurant. Like going from Beirut to Munich! I liked the neighborhood feel to this place although again, no non-smoking section. But we were seated in a small area where luckily no one was smoking. Service was great - had a wonderful waitress. Many fresh fish choices which were well prepared. Guiness on tap was a nice bonus. Prices reasonable.
Fourth night was a Saturday night and we showed up at Angelo's at about 6:00 where the wait was already up to about an hour. So, we then headed to Angeloni's II. I liked the east coast old guard Italian feel to the place. No problem getting in at that time although there was a large group gathered for "grandma's 90th birthday party." In spite of this our waitress provided excellent service. But there were periods of excessive smoke wafting over from one of the group tables. Food was good, if not great but exactly what I wanted. Liked being able to choose a pasta type and get it with just olive oil and garlic. I ordered a side dish of mushrooms, onions and artichokes to round it out. Wine list was amusing with some $100+ wines for show but got a nice Barbera for $21.
When the show ended we needed time to wait for our crates to come back so we just walked across the street to Tun's Tavern brewpub in the Sheraton. The stout was good and the brewpub fare pretty standard. My grilled salmon was excellent and the waitress was entertainingly ditzy. Best of all, there was a non-smoking area.
I travel to Europe frequently and can adapt to local smoking customs. But I'm finding that more and more restaurants have smoke-free areas or the customers are a little more respectful of their neighbors. I'm not sure what the problem is in AC other than the gambling environment. But Vegas is much more progressive and tolerable, at least when it comes to dining out.