Las Vegas: Japanese Street Food at Yusho

Las Vegas: Japanese Street Food at Yusho

Yusho Restaurant at Monte Carlo, Las Vegas

Yusho Restaurant at Monte Carlo, Las Vegas

I’m finally back from the dead. Well, not literally, of course but at least I’m back to writing blog entries. And the first one I’m bringing to you guys is about food. Who doesn’t love food? But when it comes to Asian food, a lot of people tend to disagree. So do Justin and I.

For my birthday weekend, Justin & I went to Las Vegas. Knowing us, where else would we go right?

As soon as we got to the Monte Carlo, we were pretty hungry and decided to grab a bite. My preference for Japanese food is nothing new to Justin and so he gave in. We were lured in by the concept of Japanese food like Takoyaki, Yakitori and other grilled specialties. However, what we got was quite different than any of our expectations.

As soon as we entered the dining room, I noticed the special ambiance and wall colors. The furniture reminded me of a casual dining restaurant with colorful chairs, turquoise walls and wooden tables.

When we got seated at our table, we looked over the menu and realized that the items were neither priced as street food or casual dining, nor resembled anything we had expected.

The waitress explained to us that the food would be served “tapas-style”, meaning small portions to share, so we should order many of them.

We decided to order  mushroom miso soup, Japanese griddle cake, chicken drummies, house pickles, grilled duckbreast, grilled octopus and two steamed buns (crispy cod & pork shoulder).

Mushroom Miso Soup

Mushroom Miso Soup & Pickled Vegetables

The mushroom miso soup came first and the light mushroom broth was a delight with tofu and sea weed.

As a second dish we got our pickled vegetables which included lotus root, carrots, cucumbers and sea weed and was also really good and quite tangy.

Justin got his chicken drummies and he said he really liked it. I didn’t try it because chicken’s not my thing and it really was the only thing he wanted to eat off the menu except a pork shoulder steamed bun.

The grilled duck breast was wrapped around mushrooms and accompanied by a sweet but savory shiitake mushroom marmalade.

Our grilled octopus dish was quite peppery in taste and it was loaded which enoki mushrooms, which made the dish quite special.

Overall our experience was really great. If you guys want to check it out, click the link in this post. It’s a great place to enjoy some different Japanese food, but beware it tends to be quite pricey.

Yusho
at the Hotel Monte Carlo, Las Vegas
http://www.montecarlo.com/restaurants/yusho.aspx

 

Blu Jam Cafe – A reason to cut your beauty sleep short for brunch

Blu Jam Cafe – A reason to cut your beauty sleep short for brunch

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Loxex Scramble – Salmon & Brie

Usually, I don’t get up early on a Saturday. Well, I don’t get up early on any day unless I have to or someone promises me something I find rewarding or entertaining enough to cut my beauty sleep short.

So when my friend Angelica invited me to brunch, I was naturally a little lazy. And indeed it took us a couple of weeks to actually go through with it.

But last Saturday we ended up meeting at this place called Blu Jam Cafe in Sherman Oaks. The cafe itself is pretty easy to find, located on Ventura Blvd. When I arrived there, I tried to park in their small (but free) parking lot in the back and after a while I found a spot. If you’re there on a Saturday, be prepared to battle for it. Or you can park on the meters on the street.

When I entered the restaurant, there were a lot of people waiting to get a table and it took us 30 minutes to get seated.

Our table was nestled in a small outside area and it was pretty crammed but I didn’t feel bothered by the other guests. When I took a look at the menu, I was ecstatic.

The menu had a vast array of items you don’t usually see on a brunch menu – or at least I’ve never seen them before. Which other place serves Italian Breakfast Risotto and Breakfast Carbonara? And indeed, it looks just as delicious as it sounds. According to their website, their Breakfast Carbonara is  risotto with crispy smoked bacon, green peas, parsley and parmesan, topped with two poached eggs and herb pistou.

We chose a little more traditional breakfasts. I picked the Lorox scramble, which are made with smoked salmon, chives and brie. Unfortunately, the waitress messed up my order and I got the regular eggs, instead of egg whites. But hey, let’s not be difficult here. So I let it slide.

Crispy French Toast & Breakfast Quesadilla

Crispy French Toast & Breakfast Quesadilla

My friend ordered the Breakfast Quesadilla which also looked delicious. Even though both our orders came with fruits, we decided we needed more sweets. So we went, with the specialty, which they are known for, crispy french toast. That’s regular french toast rolled in cornflakes and served with fresh berries and a vanilla bean sauce. It was my first time trying any kind of french toast and I really enjoyed it.

The price overall was very affordable and I had a great time. Well, until they declined my card and I found out someone had stolen my credit card information but that’s a story for another day. And it’s definitely not their fault, so if you’re ever in the neighborhood of Sherman Oaks or just feel like a really good brunch place. Check them out.

Blu Jam Cafe
15045 Ventura Blvd. Sherman Oaks, CA 91403
http://www.blujamcafe.com/menus/

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Breakfast at Blu Jam Café!