Where to Eat in Las Vegas Right Now
The buzz: No bland and boring cucumber rolls here. Chikyu is proving vegan sushi can be indulgent and yes, full of flavor. Vietnamese chef John Le mastered the concept at Shizen in San Francisco before moving to Las Vegas to open his own place. Whether dine-in or carryout, the food comes with a colorful presentation to match the wow-factor of every bite. A Euphorics menu features a trio of "cocktails" with a legit buzz provided by nootropics and other mind-engaging ingredients in place of alcohol.
The food: You won't see a lot of substitutes (like fake tuna or shrimp) to fill a meatless void. Instead, vegetables are prepared with time and careful detail to produce intriguing flavor combinations. The specialty rolls, named after Nevada wildflowers, make good use of sweet potato tempura, spicy tofu, smoked beets, and vegetables you won't usually see in your grocery store—like burdock, takuan (pickled daikon radish), or rocoto peppers. The real magic, however, is in the simplicity of the nigiri, which is much more than just a vegetable or fruit slice on top of rice. The green mango, for example, is pickled for three days with cloves and other spices for an intriguing bite that will appeal to an audience beyond those simply looking for a great vegan restaurant in Las Vegas.
The cost: Starters and small plates $4-14, nigiri and rolls $5-13.
How to order: Tables are first come, first serve. Call 725-777-3787 to place a pickup order.
The Best Vegan & Vegetarian Spots in Las Vegas
Chikyū had the unfortunate timing of opening in the midst of the pandemic, but they’ve weathered the storm of 2020 and ended up on the radar of Vegas vegans for their beautifully presented and thoughtfully prepared vegan sushi. The concept is a partnership between Chef John Le, one of the original sushi chefs at San Francisco’s celebrated vegan sushi restaurant Shizen, and Shizen co-founder and ocean conservationist Casson Trenor. Theirs is a refined approach to vegan sushi, utilizing classic Japanese culinary techniques to highlight and honor the plant-based ingredients in much the same way that traditional sushi honors the flavors and textures of the fresh fish.