Monday, April 23, 2012


If you are bold enough to trek beyond the transparent wall which separates the glamorous Vegas from the real, unplugged version, you will find that there is much  more to Vegas than just celebrity chef institutions hoping to add a few million to their culinary empire.
You will find hidden gems such as Raku, concealed in a generic mini-mall without barely a sign. Raku is the best izakaya you can find in the Western hemisphere, not merely an opinion - it is a fact. With the plethora of izakayas scattered in So-Cal, bay area and the East Coast, one would think Vegas would be the last place to have a decent izakaya. But this little package of a place sparked such emotions from patrons that a haiku was composed by my cousin/yelper and later borrowed by Las Vegas food critique, John Curtas.

Here you have my cousins haikun which he posted on yelp:

“Sashimi Salad”
Fresh slice of the sea
Deep-fried onions paired with greens  
Perfect start to meal
“Agedashi Tofu”
House made soybean dream
Amazing broth, chili, roe
Ten dollars well spent
“Apple Marinated Lamb Chop”
Succulent two chops
Aromatically juicy
No shame to gnaw bone
“Soboro Don- Seasoned Ground Chicken”
Quail yolk atop rice
Mix ingredients and share
Comfort food at its best
“Grilled rice ball”
Two nuggets of art
Fragrant mint countervailed with crunch
Complements all meats
Crispy rice coating
Perfect balance in texture
Veggie laced with crack
“Kobe beef skirt steak”
Ribeye pales to you
Where have you been all my life?
Melt in your mouth joy
“Pork Cheek”
Bacon’s lost cousin
I feel guilty eating this…
Yet I cannot stop

Expect no haiku or prose from me. Having to construct a sentence is taxing enough already. But sticking a few photographs on the web comes with ease. Lets stick to that.

uni, salmon roe, poached egg, dashi broth

If you do find yourself in Vegas and tired of the chops, tartareand buffets, be intrepid and make a stop here. You will find cold soba noodles enveloped in uni, foie gras custard, beef tongue tataki, and grilled pork cheeks like no other. This may even be the highlight of your trip.

5030 W.Spring Mountain Rd #2 Las Vegas, NV 89146
(702) 367-3511

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