Saturday, May 3, 2014

Tonkatsu Kiyoshi @ 7780 S Jones Blvd, Las Vegas


It's been a busy month, with two Japanese restaurants in the area that I haven't tried yet, I am thrilled and filled at the same time....

I can always have Tonkatsu for any meal; it's comfort food for me and if you go to Japan, they make it so light and crunchy, you almost can't believe that its fried.  Almost...

But alas, we're not in Japan, and for the most part, Tonkatsu here is a heavier, oilier version of the original, and if you're lucky, the Pork doesn't taste like your belt.. or is as thin...

And then Tonkatsu Kiyoshi come into town, and all is good.  Located in an area that no matter where you live, takes a butt long time to get to, since it's in a residential-ish area with rudimentary access (Vegas, could you hurry up and upgrade the road conditions already)?  I was a little trepidatious at first, I really didn't want to go if it was just another L&L BBQ or Ross J's... (no offense)...

The venue is not big, under 40 seats total with a great counter for single dining; the interior is pretty bare bones, but understandable considering its location and casual service.  

Its always a good sign to see Sesame and Tonkatsu sauce on the table with your own mini mortar and pestle.  You grind the Sesame seeds and then pour the tart sauce over to create a goopy concoction to dip your flaky fried Tonkatsu, I prefer to add a little hot mustard to give it a kick!

As mini starters, we ordered the Crab and Cucumber Salad and the House made Potato Salad.  I loved how the dishes came in ceramics authentic to a Japanese Tonkatsu House, and looked forward how the dishes would taste.

The House Potato Salad had Cucumber, Apple and Japanese Mayonnaise (Kewpie).  Although it was good, It was a little watered down and not as creamy as I was expecting.  But then again, with all the fried food that was about to be consumed, maybe creamy was overkill...

So the next dish we ordered was the Crab Cucumber Salad.... which to my disappointment, was not with real Crab but with Crab Sticks or 'Kamaboko' - basically imitation crab made from white fish meat.  But, for $3.50, I should have realized that the fact that this wan't going to be a real Crab dish.

Oddly enough, there was a disproportionate amount of Crabstick in comparison to Cucumber.  It was an odd dish for sure.

As for the Tonkatsu, I got the combination set with  two pieces of
Tenderloin (Hire) and two Fried Shrimp.  You have two types of cuts to choose from: Hire and Rosu (Thick cut Pork Loin).  Usually I get the Hire; it's a softer cut that comes installer, thinner pieces.  If I'm really hungry, I'll get the Rosu which is thicker and bigger but a little tougher to chew.

I was thoroughly amazed at how soft the Tonkutsu was, it was fried perfectly too, not greasy in the least, it was very light and easy to eat.  It was a authentic as I could ever have imagined, like being back in Japan.  The Miso Soup was the real thing as well, and the Rice was spot on (yes, you can fuck up Rice...)

The Fried Shimp was ok, again fried to perfection but I wasn't sure about the freshness of the Shrimp.  I would get it again.

But all in all, its definitely worth going back to for the Hire Katsu.  And with a couple of combinations you can get as well as Katsu Curry, It's a place I can back again and again!

Ratings (Out of Five Stars)
Food:           4
Ambience:  Ummm
Service:       4.75

Tonkatsu Kiyoshi on Urbanspoon