Sunday, May 10, 2009

Japonais: Mirage Hotel

On a Saturday evening, after many hours at the UNLVino grand tasting, I was hungry but wanted something rather simple and quick. Of the varied choices available at the Mirage Hotel, I settled on Japonais, a Japanese restaurant and lounge. I decided to sit at the bar, knowing they were still holding their Happy Hour, with $7 foods and drinks.

I began with a glass of Hakutsuru Sho Une "Soaring Clouds" Junmai Daiginjo, which was only $7. I have had this Saké before and really enjoyed it. It was very cool that they chose to offer a Daiginjo as part of their Happy Hour. I would have expected a lesser quality Saké to be one of their specials.

Their sushi is pricey, as in many other high-end places in Vegas. I ordered the Akami tuna ($6 per piece), Zuke, soy marinated salmon ($5 per piece), and Unagi ($6 per piece). All were excellent, good-sized pieces of fresh fish. They were high quality, comparable to any other sushi restaurant I have been to in Vegas.

When you order "The Rock" ($17), a real rock is brought to your table, a very hot black stone upon which you will cook your thinly sliced pieces of marinated New York strip steak. You only need to place the raw steak on the rock for mere seconds before it is done. The steak was very tender and flavorful, and it is fun to cook your own steak on the stone. There were about 10 pieces of steak on the plate and savored each piece.

On Friday night, I had tried some Robata, Japanese grilling, at Okada (which I will review in the near future). The meat is grilled over Bincho Tan, Japanese charcoal. I had some chicken at Okada, but also ordered some Spicy Chicken with shiso buds ($12) on the Robata at Japonais. The Spicy Chicken was exceptional, and was much better than what I had at Okada. The Spicy Chicken was moist and flavorful, a nice grilled flavor with mildly hot spices. I easily could have eaten a dozen of those skewers.

Overall, I was very pleased with the food at Japonais, albeit it is pricey. Service was excellent too. If you are at the Mirage, why not check them out.

Japonais (Mirage) on Urbanspoon

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