Why did we dine here? – Raku is a popular Japanese restaurant in Las Vegas. Some friends loved this place and suggested we dine there. Raku are located about 15 minutes from the strip, right in the middle the Chinatown strip mall area. Chef Mitsuo Endo has been packing them in for many years.
Insider Tip – Make reservation ahead of time
Cuisine – Japanese Izakaya
Location – Las Vegas
Opened – 2008
Service – Raku had very good service. The folks know the menu well and can help steer you to the favorites.
Verdict – Raku impressed us. Excellent food, real binchotan charcoal, wide variety at reasonable prices. Better Japanese Izakaya than most places in the San Francisco Area. Cheaper and way better than Pabu in San Francisco. No wonder it is a late night favorite of chefs. Get in a cab and get off the strip now!
Keep some room. Be sure to visit sister dessert place: Sweets Raku in the same strip mall complex. That restaurant smells like a warm cookie shop. Yum!
Try their 2 course set menu dessert for $15.
The egg batter Fried Olives ($4) are unique and a must try.
Reservations by phone only. Coming to Los Angeles in 2015.
Is this restaurant worth a 5 minute drive? Yes. 30 minute? Yes. 1 Hour? Yes.
Raku Signature Dishes – Tofu, Foie Gras Egg Custard, Skewers, Scallops, Kobe Beef Outside skirt
Raku’s Menu is pretty wide ranging. Everything from house made tofu to foie gras fusion dishes. Lots of the usual Izakaya skwers too. A chalkboard with specials is also presented.
Raku Food Picks:
Raku’s Tofu (Half $3.50) is a steal at this price. Home made, cold, and acommpanied with add-ins like bonito shavings, ginger and chives.
Sashimi Salad ($14) was a fusiony affair. Spinach salad with lots of fresh fish on top.
Yellowtail Carpaccio ($12) 7 pieces of perfectly sliced fish topped with one of 2 items plus a sauce on the side. The closest you get to sashimi here. Very pristine.
Steamed Foie Gras Egg Custard ($10) was silky smooth but interesting. Very rich, almost too much so. Better love foie and chawan mushi.
Foie Gras Don ($18.50) hit the target for sauteed foie fans. Foie on a bed of greens with rice and some soy sauce underneath. Awesome.
Grilled Rice Balls ($5) included 2 different styles including one with some egg batter and seaweed.
Yummy Miso Soup ($3.80) was unique in that it was made with egg, giving it a creamer taste.
Poached Egg with Sea Urchin and Salmon Roe ($9) was a runny, gooey, mixture of goodness. Perfect for fans of uni.
Chicken Breast wrapped with Chicken Skin ($3) 3 chunks with some salt and a lot of juicy tenderness.
Kobe Beef Fillet with Wasabi ($12) was not too spicy, but definitely was made of quality meat.
Kobe Beef Outside Skirt with Garlic ($7.50) another recommendation that kept it more straightforward with meat flavor.
Duck with Balsamic Soy Sauce ($4.50) is a signature dish that also is highly recommended. Reasonable price.
Portabella stuffed with Ground Chicken ($4.50) was made with egg and made for a meaty skewer.
Butter Sautéed Scallop with Soy Sauce ($7) was recommended by the server. One medium sized scallop, still in its shell. Fresh and clean.
Asparagus ($2) were 2 small skewers. Very good with a spiced flavor.
Mushroom ($1.50) were plan looking but juicy and worth ordering.
Eringe Mushroom ($4) was another variety of mushroom.
OK: (Order if you like this dish)
Pans: (We would not reorder these dishes)
Do you agree with our review? Have you found other similar restaurants that are better?