The desert may appear counterintuitive as a location to for amazing Japanese food, which relies heavily on offerings from the sea. But don’t be fooled by the climate or landlocked status – Las Vegas has many options that offer this popular cuisine. These restaurants will not only leave your belly full and taste buds happy, but also will provide an experience beyond the norm. Read on for five unique Japanese dining experiences in Sin City.  

In a strip mall crowded with variety, Kabuto stands out not for its façade, but for its unwavering commitment to quality. This Edomae-style sushi restaurant features a menu limited only to what is fresh and of the highest caliber. Diners can (and should) place themselves entirely in the hands of the Chef with the Omakase menus. Choose from three selections, each more bountiful than the last, but all of which demonstrate the artistry behind the perceived simplicity of nigiri sushi. Due to their regard for purity of ingredients, each morsel at Kabuto will induce unsolicited sounds of pleasure. Sin City indeed.  

Trattoria Nakamura-Ya
Japanese and Italian cuisines might seem like strange bedfellows, but any doubts will entirely subside after the first bite at Trattoria Nakamura-Ya. Nestled in the same tightly populated strip mall as Kabuto, this eatery does not skimp on flavor or creativity. The menu combines the tastes and ingredients both countries are known for: perfectly cooked noodles, rich sauces and seafood. One dish which marries all three is the Linguini Uni Tomato Cream. This smooth mingling of sea-urchin and al dente pasta will leave you saying arigato and grazie. You will also wonder why any of these elements would ever be apart again.

Sushi Samba
Sushi Samba is a culinary psychedelic acid trip you’ll want to take. Merging the sights, sounds, flavors and textures of Brazil, Peru and Japan is no easy feat, but this restaurant manages to do just that in not only one location, but four. The Sushi Samba inside The Palazzo on the Strip delivers visual delights in the atmosphere as well as on the plate. Dishes such as Crispy Taquitos and Miso-Marinated Chilean Sea Bass hit fresh notes of acidity and heat while highlighting textures varying from buttery to crackling. The synergy is so effective, you’ll crave seconds and thirds. 

Popular amongst the kitchen staff of many high-end Strip institutions, Ichiza has become a bit of an institution itself. This spot is known not only for its late-night hours, but also for its many Small Plate offerings, which are detailed on handwritten notes posted on the walls throughout the place. Indulge in the tenderness of Grilled Salmon Collar or smokiness of Grilled Squid. Just leave room to revel in the sweetness of Honey Toast. The excitingly unpolished and lived-in dining experience at Ichiza – if not for its size – could easily be found in the likes of Tokyo’s infamous Golden Gai district. 

Sapporo Revolving Sushi
At Sapporo Revolving Sushi, the décor is sleek and modern, allowing the silver conveyer belt which snakes through the restaurant to blend right in. Your meal begins as soon as you sit down in an intimate booth as you’re able to nab little $2.50 plates of sushi, chicken and appetizers as they travel by. Round out the experience when you place an order on the tablet at your table and a mechanized platform zips over to deliver the food from the kitchen to your side. No one needs a steaming bowl of soup speeding towards them, which is why the creamy Black Garlic Ramen will be brought out by a server, the old-fashioned way.