Shuseki — almost directly across the street from Raku, and just a mile west of Ichiza on Spring Mountain Road, is never as busy as either of them. So it makes and good alternative when these two are packed to the rafters with Far East hipsters and lovers of small, pristine plates of Japanese food.
Shuseki has a large, all over the map menu, that isn’t as focused as Raku’s nor as quirky as Ichiza’s, but in the dozen or so times we’ve eaten here, we’ve been captivated by everything that’s been served.
So a week ago, on a Monday night no less, that’s just where we ambled for some grub when are first two choices were full. FYI: Raku told us we couldn’t get seated until 10:30 — this was around 7…on a friggin’ Monday night!
The bee in our bonnet at the time was sushi/sashimi on Spring Mountain Road. For all of the exceptional Asian eats available on this alimentary avenue, raw fish is in short supply. Raku usually features a special or two of impeccable sashimi, but that’s it, and Ichiza’s menu is more extensive, but rarely as carefully chosen or cut.
Shuseki offers an extensive menu more grounded in Nippon naturals like ajihiraki (grilled horse mackeral) yaki soba (stir fried noodles) to katsu don (pork cutlet and egg bowl), with the added bonus that everything on it comes with a picture — greatly lessening the anxiety of many a round eye. (Even the take out menu has pretty color pictures of everything they offer!)
All of this makes it the perfect place for gaijin to get an Japanese (food) education. The hokke (grilled atka mackeral) might not be the equal of Raku’s, and the salmon skin roll not in the same league as Sen’s, but in a pinch, and even when not in one, the 179 item menu fills a nice Nipponese niche among our eateries.
The meal above of chirashi (mixed) sashimi on sushi rice-$13, spinach with sesame dressing-$3, and takokimchi (raw octopus in kimchi sauce)-$4, and assorted Japanese pickles-$4, was just what the doctor ordered.
5115 West Spring Mountain Road # 117
Las Vegas, NV 90146