Chritiques is back in action! I have been a bit busy the past few weeks traveling for work and planning a big event in Las Vegas, but the good news for you is that I now have three more great suggestions for dining along Las Vegas Boulevard! And, ironically enough, all three serve not only amazing food, but amazing Japanese food, including sushi, as well.
Yellowtail Japanese Restaurant & Lounge has been located within the Bellagio since 2008, but it was not until this recent visit that I checked it out. Between the amazing Lychee Martini, views of the Bellagio fountains, and fantastic sushi, it was worth the wait, but I wish I had previously visited! The Big Eye Tuna Pizza, with micro shiso and truffle oil, is not to be missed. I’m not kidding. We almost ordered a second pizza during dinner after devouring one with our cocktails at the bar as we waited for our table. The fresh Kumamoto Oysters as well as the decadent Rock Shrimp with Korean Chili Aioli are both worthwhile starters, and I really enjoyed the Yellowtail Scallion roll, made with Hamachi and green onions, as well as the California Roll, prepared with fresh Alaskan King Crab, cucumber, and avocado. For dessert, both the Yuzu Citrus – similar to a key lime pie – and Black & White Sesame Matcha Cake are worthwhile choices.
Chef Akira Back of Yellowtail is also behind Kumi Japanese Restaurant + Bar in Mandalay Bay, and by sheer coincidence, we dined there as well. Located within the former China Grill space in the rear of Mandalay Bay and among the many other restaurants there, Kumi was delicious and the ideal pre-Michael Jackson ONE Cirque du Soleil show meal. A bottle of Sake shared by the table was the perfect drink of choice to accompany Shishito Peppers and Rock Shrimp Tempura. The Miso Black Cod is a must order, in addition to the thinly sliced and seared melt-in-your-mouth Scallops. I found the sushi rolls here, which can be made with brown rice, to be even better than those at Yellowtail, and for those looking for something unconventional, they even feature a Pop Rockin’ roll with spicy tuna, crab, salmon, avocado, and Pop Rocks!
Back at the Bellagio, and the site of our event, is Sensi, which features a zen-like atmosphere with a waterfall and glass encased central kitchen, and much more than just sushi. Sensi is committed to serving sustainably grown and naturally raised products, and the quality is highly evident in the taste of the food. While some Japanese influences are found on both the bar and main dining room menus, including fresh and delicious sushi rolls, steamed buns, and miso glazed salmon, items such as smoked salmon deviled eggs, spring risotto, and organic and naturally raised seafood and meats are also featured. The wine list is just as impressive as the food.
One thing is for certain when it comes to Las Vegas – even if you don’t win at the tables, you can definitely win when it comes to good dining. Where are your favorite places to dine in Vegas?