Hachi, the uber-cool Japanese-fusion restaurant inside the Red Rock Hotel, is absolutely amazing. And by that I mean, when people ask me if it’s amazing….I say: “absolutely.”
But before I get into why it is so, permit me a digression.
To hear ELV speak these words in the monotonic, sometimes somnambulate baritone for which he is known, click here, or continue reading after the jump.
Can anyone tell me when and why the word “absolutely” became the standard, English, all-purpose synonym for “yes?” Everywhere my ear turns these days, everyone….and by that I mean everyone, uses the word “absolutely” whenever they’re responding in the affirmative to a question. In the past weeks, by way of example, on our good old KNPR State of Nevada, I’ve heard such disparate characters as John Ralston, Steve Sebelius, Erin Neff, Tony Curtis, and a B-52 bomber pilot use the term repeatedly. Everyone from semi-literate baseball players to the Dali Lama now uses the word instead of a simple “yes,” and everyone from news anchors to nobodies now unleashes this scourge upon the English listening public, in almost every conversation.
To me, the phenomenon has been amazing – another overused term – but for the time being anyway I’ll use the latter to describe Linda Rodriguez’s creative cooking at Hachi.
What I love about Hachi is the level of sophistication it brings to an off-Strip property for decidedly non-Strip prices. The design – by the Friedmutter Group – is stylish, comfortable and fun — three words that could also be used to describe the food. And these days, with 38 menu items listed for under eight bucks, you could also call the place a serious bargain.
Rodriguez is but one-half of the husband/wife team behind this kitchen. Along with husband Martin Swift, she cranks out nouveau-sushi that highlights her ten years of service in the Nobu empire, and brings a lot of bang for the buck to the plate.
You won’t find anything as inventive as her sumpin-sumpin, LSD or eight-ball sushi rolls (the drug references are an inside joke) at any all you can eat joint—packed as they are with visual appeal, and a light hand in the sauce department–and her take on miso-glazed sea bass and rich, unctuous short ribs may not be as big as Nobu’s, but they’re half the price and just as satisfying.
Hachi also has an excellent sake selection, a way cool bar, and lots of healthy Asian nibbles that define the way Americans are eating (or should be eating) these days.
Rodriguez told me she didn’t want to cook on the Strip when she was first approached about coming to town – preferring instead to make herself at home (and cook for locals), and not just be seen as another carpetbagger. To the extent that she’s turned Hachi into our most amazing fusion-food eatery, she’s succeeded….absolutely.
In the Red Rock Casino Resort
11011W. Charleston Blvd.
Las Vegas, NV 89135