John Curtas is …

HACHI Is Absolutely Amazing!

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.

HACHI

In the Red Rock Casino Resort

11011W. Charleston Blvd.

Las Vegas, NV 89135

702.797.7500

www.ilovehachi.com

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10 Responses to HACHI Is Absolutely Amazing!

  • John, please spare me the advertisement/video. Since when are you shilling on tv? Enough already.

  • Hachi is not only a great looking restaurant with outstanding food, good drinks and friendly service – Chefs Martin and Linda are two of the most genuine people in the industry.

    In addition to the new 38 under $8 menu, the regular items are also outstanding and considering their quality, very reasonably priced. We also enjoy going in just for sushi, saddling up to the sushi bar and having head sushi chef Fernando Luna create our personalized feast.

  • Went to Hachi back in January with my parents, we did the 10 course omakase and there wasn’t a single complaint, or even minor groan, at the table. Excellent food, solid service, and cool surroundings. If you haven’t been, go now.

  • Great post – and I like the video – though I’m pretty sure it’s not an advertisement. I know where I’ll be spending Happy Hour tonight!

  • That caught me off guard as well. Usually the videos don’t auto-play, and KLAS didn’t used to have ads at the beginning, and the videos weren’t that big either.

    We will ABSOLUTELY get to the bottom of this. :)

  • Fixed, I think. It won’t auto play any more, but sadly the ads are embedded by KLAS on all their shared video — i.e. out of our control.

  • Hachi is cool but Sen of Japan has a new menu and your $$ won’t go toward stations bankruptcy! I’m dining strategically to keep our local businessfolk in business!

  • I’m surprised you liked this place so much. I went once when it first opened and was really let down. Maybe hadn’t worked the kinks out?

    I was told second hand that “it was the same people that did Bond St. Sushi in NYC” (not 100% sure what that means, who are these “people”?), but found it to be overpriced and uninspired, nothing like Bond St.

    I’ll give it one more shot on your recomendation, but I agree with other commenter re Sen of Japan.

  • I have a serious issue with choosing against any of the good Station Casinos restaurants. If you don’t support the places that employ many of the people who eat at the locals restaurants, no matter how many times you go, they will not survive. Support everyone (whose food warrants it) and everyone will thrive.

  • Husband and wife team, Chefs Linda Rodriguez and Martin Stein, were indeed at BondSt. in NYC where Linda was Exec Chef for 8 years before coming to Vegas to open Red Rock. Keep in mind the cuisine in NYC can be a little more cutting edge as the culinary crowd in that city is still more advanced than most of the Vegas residents (no offense my fellow Las Vegans…it’s just the case). That being said, Linda, Martin and the team there do an outstanding job of being creative and providing tasty and thoughtful food. And the prices are also very good. Give it another shot!

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