Each week Neon spotlights a different cuisine in the Dining Guide, with Asian restaurants this week. Restaurants are rated on a letter-grade scale, from A to F. Opinions by R-J critic Heidi Knapp Rinella (H.K.R.) are indicated by initials. Price symbols are based on the cost of an average entree: $ = entrees less than $10; $$ = entrees $10 to $20; $$$ = entrees $20 to $30; and $$$$ = entrees more than $30.
3827 E. Sunset Road; 898-3358
Amlee’s is an old-school kind of place, Chinese-American with the emphasis on American. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, if that’s what you (like a legion of others) are looking for. The chicken chow mein was in the western style, with soft noodles, and the tomato beef had lots of large chunks of bright fresh tomatoes. The Amlee’s Plate of appetizers was a true blast from the past. (3/22/13 H.K.R.)
Overall: N (for nostalgic)
ARCHI’S THAI KITCHEN, BISTRO AND CAFE
6360 W. Flamingo Road; 880-5550, and 6345 S. Rainbow Blvd. and 9350 W. Sahara Ave.
Signature dishes: Pad Thai, curries.
LVH, 3000 Paradise Road; 732-5755
Signature dishes: teppanyaki-style beef, shrimp, etc.
5300 Spring Mountain Road; 876-3838, and at the Palms, 4321 W. Flamingo Road
Signature dishes: dim sum, barbecued pork.
3420 S. Jones Blvd.; 873-1977
Signature dishes: steamed juicy pork buns, green-onion pancake.
EAST OCEAN DIM SUM & SEAFOOD RESTAURANT
9570 S. Eastern Ave., Henderson; 567-4800
Dim Sum isn’t exactly tough to find in the valley, but most of the places that specialize in it are clustered in and around Chinatown. So no wonder Henderson’s East Ocean is packing them in. Well, that’s not just because of geography but also because of the fresh, well-prepared foods such as shrimp wontons, shrimp noodle rolls, char si bao, pork shu mai, chive dumplings, shrimp dumplings and yellow custard buns. And the carts arrived promptly and repeatedly. (4/6/12 H.K.R.)
5115 Spring Mountain Road; 221-4841
Signature dishes: banh mi, pho.
I LOVE SUSHI
11041 S. Eastern Ave.; 990-4055
I Love Sushi is a “fusion” sushi restaurant, of the genre that are refining and redefining the art to be more in keeping with American tastes. To that end, there’s a heavy reliance on tuna and salmon, but we’re not complaining. We liked the Joe’s Special, Sex on the Beach, the I Love Sushi Special, the Lisa Hand Roll and the Tornado. And a vanilla mochi for dessert. There’s also teriyaki, teppanyaki and yakisoba if sushi’s not your thing. (7/21/11 H.K.R.)
4601 Spring Mountain Road; 889-8881
Signature dishes: braised shark fin, abalone.
KOBE SUSHI BISTRO
6375 S. Rainbow Blvd.; 898-9998
Signature dishes: Monkey Special, Omelet Roll.
KYARA JAPANESE TAPAS
6555 S. Jones Blvd.; 434-8856
Tapas restaurants have been successfully borrowing from other cuisines — including Japanese — for years. Kyara takes that a step farther, with a menu that’s primarily (though not exclusively) Japanese in origin. We liked the cheese tempura, asparagus in bacon, butabara (pork belly), poke, peppered tuna, beef tataki, agedashi tofu and the serene, soothing atmosphere. (10/5/12 H.K.R.)
523 Fremont St.; 778-0888
Le Thai’s food, if not transcendent, represents solid preparations of mostly traditional Thai dishes. Our favorite was our dessert, which was a pancake layered with Nutella and topped with a sweet omelet. We also liked the pork jerky with waterfall sauce, the Three Color Curry and the Thai fried rice. The best thing about Le Thai is it’s perfect for downtown, a pleasant funky-artsy spot that morphs as the evening wears on. (7/13/12 H.K.R.)
LILLY’S THAI & VIETNAMESE
7365 S. Sahara Ave.; 778-7731
Lilly’s may not have as many of the more interesting Vietnamese dishes we’d find in the spots in and around Chinatown, but what’s there is well prepared and the price definitely is right. Summer rolls filled with shrimp and crisp vegetables were a fine way to start on a warm evening. We also chose winners in the Bun Bo Xao Xa (pan-fried beef with rice vermicelli and vegetables), the Xao Bong Cai (stir-fried shrimp and broccoli over steamed rice) and a dessert of sticky rice and green-tea ice cream. (4/5/13 H.K.R.)
NITTAYA’S SECRET KITCHEN
2110 N. Rampart Blvd.; 360-8885
We were off to a good start with the house fruit-infused water (red apple, kiwi, orange and lemon on the evening of our visit), and we liked everything that was to follow. That included the World Famous Spinach Salad, pork and vegetable egg rolls, cilantro steak skewers, grilled mango shrimp, shrimp satay, beef jerky and fried bananas. (1/21/11 H.K.R.)
Hard Rock Hotel, 4455 Paradise Road; 693-5000
Signature dishes: black cod with miso, dessert bento box.
5485 W. Sahara Ave.; 631-3839
Signature dishes: dim sum, chicken-and-sweet-corn soup.
7775 S. Rainbow Blvd.; 646-9744
Signature dishes: Simply Shrimp roll, Red Rock roll.
1972 N. Rainbow Blvd.; 638-2746, and 7835 S. Rainbow Blvd. and 9530 S. Eastern Ave.
We did Pin Kaow at lunch, when a bargain price will get you a special that includes soup (an offbeat but tasty cucumber on the day of our visit), egg rolls and wontons, plus entree. We had a Thai beef salad and a pork. Both were delightful — though no more so than the decor, in which the prodigious use of wood and flowers has helped the restaurant transcend its strip-center location. (11/13/11 H.K.R.)
PING PANG PONG
Gold Coast, 4000 W. Flamingo Road; 367-7111
Signature dishes: dim sum, tea-smoked duck.
5030 W. Spring Mountain Road; 367-3511
Signature dishes: agedashi tofu, brown-sugar bubbly pudding.
SAM WOO BAR-B-Q
China Town Plaza, 4215 Spring Mountain Road; 368-7628 or 368-7638
Signature dishes: char siu (Chinese barbecued pork), roast duck.
1716 W. Horizon Ridge Parkway, Henderson; 385-4567
Signature dishes: shabu-shabu, edamame.
5985 W. Sahara Ave.; 838-2927
The notion that Americans’ idea of Japanese food has shifted from “steakhouses” to sushi bars was reinforced at Sushi Fever, whose teppan tables sat cold and unused while the sushi bar and dining room were bustling. And no wonder, with fusion rolls such as the Monkey Roll with its slabs of fried banana topped with crab and special sauce, and Linda’s Special, its spicy crab and avocado wrapped with tuna, salmon and yellowtail and topped with garlic shrimp, raw onion and jalapeno, and served with a truly special sauce. Whew! We also liked the high-value two-item combo, for which we chose shrimp tempura and pork tonkatsu. (3/23/12 H.K.R.)
5666 Boulder Highway; 433-8892
A Boulder Highway strip center across from a weekly-rental hotel may seem an unexpected spot for a fusion-sushi joint, but Sushi Twister’s there and it’s thriving. We’d say that’s on the strength of creative, well-executed rolls like the Sushi Twister, Crispy Vacation, Cowgirl and Magic Mountain, plus a broad selection of nigiri sushi and more. (7/1/11 H.K.R.)
790 Coronado Center Drive, Henderson; 263-5785
Signature dishes: Henderson Roll, Korean Barbecue Roll.
TA TA ASIAN BISTRO
1450 W. Horizon Ridge Parkway, Henderson; 565-8900
Signature dishes: Monkey Special Roll, Paradise Roll.
TAO ASIAN BISTRO
The Venetian, 3377 Las Vegas Blvd. South; 388-8338
Signature dishes: roasted shishito peppers with yuzu, white tuna sashimi.
10890 S. Eastern Ave.; 837-6575
Finding little-known gems is the best part of this job, and Thai Thai is one of them. We loved the truly exemplary fresh rolls, plus the Tom Kha Gai, shrimp and scallop basil, Pumpkin Curry and sweet sticky rice with coconut ice cream. (2/1/13 H.K.R.)
Wynn Las Vegas, 3131 Las Vegas Blvd. South; 770-7000
Inter-departmental teamwork from the reservationist to our server helped make our dinner at Wing Lei a flawless experience. That was, of course, in no small part because of the excellent food, which included crispy pork belly, Three Cup Sea Bass, Mongolian Beef and walnut semifreddo for dessert. (7/19/13 H.K.R.)