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hot and juicy crawfish (Las Vegas)

domesticgodess Apr 21, 2009 08:32 AM

I stumbled across a review but its from 2007? is this place still open? has anyone been there recentely? and one more big question...is it worth the taxi drive from the Westin?

  1. p
    pens Jul 3, 2009 04:45 PM

    Yes, yes, and yes on Hot and Juicy! I had lunch there today. It was my first visit, and I can't wait to go back. It's not fancy, but it's not supposed to be. If you like shellfish, you have to go.

    1 Reply
    1. re: pens
      Dhalsim Jan 26, 2010 04:41 PM

      Finally got around to trying Hot & Juicy Crawfish last week. We ordered fresh crawfish with sausage, shrimp, and fried catfish with fries.

      We choose the standard hot & juicy sauce at medium heat for all of the steamed seafood. It was definitely potent and tasty -- its dominant notes were garlic and hot peppers but it also had some lemony undertones. Sadly, the shells on the shrimp ended up sticking to the meat much more than I’m used to which made them more difficult to peel than the crawfish. Had I known that I probably would have ordered more crawfish instead because the crawfish were very good. The catfish and fries were a nice change of pace from all the steamed food but weren’t anything spectacular. I expected to really like the andouille sausage that was steamed in with the crawfish but it was only ok.

      I left Hot & Juicy thinking that the meal had been good and the service had been excellent (the servers are super friendly and cute). I didn’t plan to add Hot & Juicy to my regular Chinatown rotation (Raku, Ichiza, Hue Thai, and several Pho destinations) but I did plan to return.

      Then the trouble began.

      One thing that nobody warned me about was the lingering hot & juicy superfunk. After you eat at this place you will smell it coming out of your pores and taste it in your mouth for days. Soapy showers do not erase the funk. Toothpaste does not erase the funk. Squeezing lemons all over your hands does not erase the funk. My girlfriend told me that I smelled like a garlic bomb. My friend’s girlfriend did not see him for more than 48 hours after the offending meal and her first words to him were literally “What is that SMELL?!” 48 hours!

      I honestly feel like I have to put that out there as a public service announcement – it was really that intense. So go forth and enjoy these delicious crawfish at your own risk, hounds. You’ve been warned.

    2. Food Tourist Jun 22, 2009 08:27 AM

      Does Hot & Juicy offer any menu items that are shellfish-free and nitrate-free (e.g. not smoked/preserved)? It's not an allergy but a pregnancy diet we are concerned about.

      4 Replies
      1. re: Food Tourist
        Food Tourist Aug 15, 2009 07:14 PM

        Sadly, we've had to drop the plan to visit Hot & Juicy next week due to dietary restrictions.

        For our three dinners, so far we have reservations at Aburiya Raku and Rosemary's. We'd like our last night to be on Strip (first visit to Vegas, sorry!) Choices have to have main courses well under $30. We're considering Enoteca San Marco (or the pre-theatre $25 prix fixe at B&B); Bellagio Buffet (anyone know the cost of the "gourmet dinner" on Friday/Saturday night?), or Ellis Island Casino and Brewery. I can't believe those are our only "lower cost" chow-worthy choices. I also want to consider Mesa Grill, Bouchon and Mon Ami Gabi for dinner that night, but will probably get vetoed or told to go alone.

        1. re: Food Tourist
          q
          QAW Aug 15, 2009 08:13 PM

          There is a new player in the game on the Strip that fits your parameters pretty well, and has impressed on a couple of visits so far - First Food and Bar, listed as being in the Palazzo, but the easiest reference point would be right where the Venetian Canal Shopps and the Palazzo connect. The welcome return of Sam DeMarco to the Las Vegas dining scene. Interesting menu, with updated takes on some traditional items plus some of their own creations, and the price points fit what you are looking for.

          1. re: QAW
            Food Tourist Aug 16, 2009 07:59 AM

            Thanks! The photos look "20-something clubby" so hopefully we'll fit in despite our older age. I hope Sam's influence is really obvious on the food quality.

            Another idea someone mentioned is "Off The Strip - Just Real Food". Any thoughts on food quality there? Is it chow-worthy?

          2. re: Food Tourist
            anonymoose Aug 17, 2009 08:49 AM

            Bellagio Fri/Sat dinner is $35.95.

            I loved Bouchon. If nothing else, make sure you go to the Bakery (main floor in front of the Phantom of the Opera). With your receipt from the Bakery, you can also get 10% off your Bouchon restaurant bill.

        2. Food Tourist Jun 20, 2009 09:30 AM

          Is Hot and Juicy a chain/franchise?

          6 Replies
          1. re: Food Tourist
            k
            kjs Jun 20, 2009 11:45 PM

            don't think so.

            btw :strict budget does not equal raku, mesa, burger bar, etc.

            1. re: kjs
              Food Tourist Jun 21, 2009 08:10 AM

              What are Raku's prices like?
              Mesa or Rosemary's is our one splurge (along with Elote in Sedona).
              Burger Bar appears to have most burgers under $10 on their online menu. I guess the add-ons add up.

              1. re: Food Tourist
                Food Tourist Jun 21, 2009 07:47 PM

                We're also in dire need of suggestions for healthy (read: organic, dairy-free, nitrate-free, shellfish-free) lunches and suppers in Vegas. Under $15-20 for lunch, under $40 for dinner. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Prefer on-strip but slightly off-strip (up to 15 mins away from Bellagio) would be fine. Thanks!

                http://www.squidoo.com/VegasVegans#mo...

                Any opinions on the above link's suggestions (includes Springs Preserve by Puck, Evos - although their website doesn't list a Nevada location - Jason's Deli, etc.)?

                1. re: Food Tourist
                  JK Grence the Cosmic Jester Jun 22, 2009 03:59 AM

                  The add-ons can rack up the price fast. I think I paid $18 for mine. It would have been $13, but I had to go and get the black truffle sauce.

                  1. re: JK Grence the Cosmic Jester
                    Food Tourist Jun 22, 2009 06:29 AM

                    But was it worth it?

                    We definitely will hit Burger Bar...seems like the meats have healthy pedigrees.

                    1. re: Food Tourist
                      JK Grence the Cosmic Jester Jun 22, 2009 01:16 PM

                      Oh goodness yes. We have some great burger places down here, but nothing that comes close to Burger Bar.

            2. Food Tourist Jun 7, 2009 08:43 AM

              What is the price of crawfish and other main courses? I want to get an idea if it fits our limited budget but their MySpace page doesn't list prices. We're looking for an "authentic" southwestern dining experience and this one seems fun and totally different to anything available in Canada. Thanks! Also, any idea how much a taxi might cost from mid-Strip?

              15 Replies
              1. re: Food Tourist
                domesticgodess Jun 7, 2009 07:13 PM

                Dear Food Tourist:
                Ive eaten in Toronto at Sukhothai and in Vegas at Lotus of Siam. Its hard to compare coz LOS has such a huge variety on their menu and its not a mom and pop operation at all. (you need reservations at LOS).
                As for hot and juicy.. I remember the bill came to $44 for the two of us, and we had shrimp, etouffee, a side of corn on the cob, a blue moon beer, crawfish and rolls!!
                We were stuffed!!
                Of all the restaurants we have experienced in the last 5 years, I would say that Hot 'n Juicy will be on the list for next year coz there is truly nothing like it Canada.
                Oh yeah..the cost of the taxi was $15 (more or less) from Bally's.
                Hope that helps and hope you enjoy your meal.
                p.s Try Raku...korean grill house, off the strip...well worth it.
                Please write a review when you return K?

                1. re: domesticgodess
                  Larry Jun 7, 2009 07:24 PM

                  A slight correction: Raku is a Japanese restaurant, specializing in robatayaki (Japanese charcoal grilling).

                2. re: Food Tourist
                  d
                  Dave Feldman Jun 7, 2009 11:21 PM

                  Hot & Juicy doesn't serve southwestern food. I'm not sure Las Vegas has any indigenous cuisine -- it is a mutt culture. If you had to describe it, I guess you'd say H&J Crawfish is ersatz Louisiana cuisine.

                  1. re: Dave Feldman
                    Food Tourist Jun 8, 2009 12:47 PM

                    Thanks, yeah, I realized later that crawfish is from Louisiana! But since that's not available in Toronto, we're happy to try it. We're also looking forward to Tex-Mex, southern, Mexican, barbecue, Latin American, etc. if there are any "good value for money" suggestions for lunch or dinner on Strip or off-Strip within a 10 minute drive? Decided against Bouchon and Mon Ami Gabi already since we'll only be there for 3 full days. Any $7 delicious steak specials or CHEAP yet tasty buffets are also welcome (since that is probably the indigenous cuisine of Vegas, haha). I have to say that Raku sounds tempting because I'm not sure we have Japanese grilling here in Toronto.

                    1. re: Food Tourist
                      domesticgodess Jun 9, 2009 08:48 PM

                      Dear Food tourist,
                      Attached are some photos of our experience at Raku.
                      I am hoping you will put Raku on your list....the food is fresh, grilled to perfection, service is lovely, and the the place was buzzing (you need reservations even on a Monday nite at 8 p.m). I had read somewhere that chefs go to Raku after their shifts end and we confirmed it with the chef at bar charlie at our waiter at bartolotta.
                      Cheers,
                      Fellow Toronto Chowhound

                       
                       
                       
                       
                      1. re: domesticgodess
                        Food Tourist Jun 10, 2009 02:24 PM

                        Thanks dg. Definitely doesn't look like what we get in Toronto. Did you take a taxi there? Have you tried any Tex-Mex, southern, southwestern, Mexican, etc. on your previous travels to Vegas area? We'll probably hit either LOS or Raku one night but it feels weird to go all the way there for Asian food!

                        1. re: Food Tourist
                          d
                          Dave Feldman Jun 11, 2009 03:07 PM

                          For Mexican, I'd suggest Los Molcajetes on Eastern for stews or La Mexicana for "mundane' but delicious antojitos on Decatur between Flamingo and Sahara. It's harder to find good Southwestern. Bobby Flay's Mesa Grill in Caesars is popular here -- I'm not a fan based on two visits (the most recent a few years ago) is one Southwestern option. There must be others, but I'm drawing a blank.

                          1. re: Dave Feldman
                            Food Tourist Jun 20, 2009 09:29 AM

                            Thanks Dave. Can anyone else offer a more recent opinion on Mesa Grill please?

                            1. re: Food Tourist
                              BadtzMaroo Aug 15, 2009 10:17 PM

                              I just went to Mesa Grill for lunch and got the Prix Fixe menu.

                              The duck and blue corn pancake appetizer was horrible: oversauced so that I could not taste the duck nor the pancake. It was so salty that I wished I said yes when the waiter asked if I wanted water. I told the waiter about it. I think they took better care of me for the main course. It was a delicious scallop on top of crispy tortilla chips on top of fluffy guacamole. The dessert was a dark chocolatey thing that I did not care for.

                              The cornbread was tasty but crumbly and hard to eat.

                              The wait staff was attentive but not well seasoned, if you will.

                              The decor is quite pleasing.

                          2. re: Food Tourist
                            Food Tourist Jun 20, 2009 10:00 AM

                            Here's our proposed itinerary:

                            breakfast at Mon Ami Gabi (Bouchon Bistro seems to have higher prices and less selection in the morning)

                            lunches at Burger Bar and Bouchon Bakery (any other must-try lunches?) or perhaps Texas 'cue off-Strip.

                            dinners at Mesa Grill (one splurge), Aburiya Raku, Hot & Juicy Crawfish, and/or Lotus of Siam. Considering Rosemary's instead of Mesa Grill.

                            Should I tweak this or am I missing anything? This is a STRICT budget trip but I am trying to convince my girlfriends that eating at Quizno's or Subway is NOT a good idea. We will be staying at the Bellagio for 3 nights, from a Wednesday afternoon to a Saturday morning. We're also going to see "O" so that all broke the bank long before food was considered!

                          3. re: domesticgodess
                            Food Tourist Jun 21, 2009 07:45 PM

                            What are the "healthy" menu options at Raku (e.g. veggie options)? Any idea of prices?

                          4. re: Food Tourist
                            JK Grence the Cosmic Jester Jun 22, 2009 03:58 AM

                            Cheap yet tasty buffets are going to be in off-Strip casinos, mainly at the Station casinos. Or so I've heard. On the strip, the good buffets can hit $30 at dinner, and the inexpensive choices border on inedible.

                            For your $7 steak dinner, head to the Ellis Island casino. It's on Koval east of the strip, just south of Flamingo. The 24-hour restaurant in there has an off-the-menu special of steak, potato, green beans, soup or salad, and a house-made beer, all for $7.

                            Oh, regarding Bouchon... they may have a smaller menu than Mon Ami Gabi. They may be more expensive than Mon Ami Gabi. However, the breakfast I had at Bouchon was hands down THE best breakfast I've ever had. I never thought I would come back from Vegas absolutely RAVING about scrambled eggs with bacon, sausage, and brioche toast, accompanied by a pastry, coffee, and fresh squeezed juice. The only thing that wasn't absolutely transcendent were the pommes frites; they were merely delightful. I think breakfast came to about $25 per person. It was VERY well worth it. My companion and I would have gone the very next day if only we had awakened early enough to do so. Don't think of it so much as an expensive breakfast, think of it as a very reasonably priced Thomas Keller meal.

                            1. re: JK Grence the Cosmic Jester
                              Food Tourist Jun 22, 2009 06:31 AM

                              Good point about Thomas Keller being reasonable. I'll go on my own if I have to!

                              That $7 deal sounds phenomenal! Thanks for all the tips.

                        2. re: Food Tourist
                          shamu613 Jun 17, 2009 01:32 AM

                          Each pound of crawfish (or shrimp) is about $13. Extras include slices of andouille sausage. corn half-cobs and red potatoes at $0.50 ea. A serving of etouffee is $6. Personally, I think the shrimp is more filling and less work but both are equally great.

                          DO NOT WEAR WHITE SHIRTS.

                          There are no utensils. You will eat with your hands. You will wear a plastic bib. If you don't want to wear the plastic bib, bring a spare shirt.

                          1. re: shamu613
                            Food Tourist Jun 21, 2009 07:44 PM

                            Thanks for the pricing.

                        3. b
                          Bran808 May 11, 2009 04:25 PM

                          Haha, Hot & Juicy is on my itinerary when my wife and I head to Vegas next month. I can't wait.

                          1. d
                            Dave Feldman Apr 23, 2009 12:07 AM

                            Still open. I haven't been there recently but others have. It is great fun but also quite limited, as the various proteins share the same sauce. But if you crave crawfish or sausage, and you love garlic and spicy food, and don't mind getting your hands messy, go for it.

                            6 Replies
                            1. re: Dave Feldman
                              domesticgodess Apr 23, 2009 06:54 AM

                              Thanks Dave. I appreciate the feedback.
                              We are definetly going to try it coz we have nothing like that here in Toronto!! So it will be a fun and novel concept plus we love seafood.
                              Our restaurant line up will be: Hot and Juicy Crawfish, Bar Charlie, Bartolotta, and Raku.
                              We are looking forward to another great trip in Vegas.
                              A report will follow-promise.

                              1. re: domesticgodess
                                k
                                kjs Apr 23, 2009 08:25 AM

                                that's quite the line-up !
                                Hot n Juicy is definitely still open ( i go at least once/month ) - for awhile, they were unable to get fresh crawfish delivered ( weather issues in Louisiana ) i believe they are past those problems now but to be safe, you may want to call ahead to confirm they have fresh crawfish ( if this is an issue to you .) would not recommend wearing your sunday best attire and please, please, please do not play the "i'm to cool" part when they hand you a bib - use it ! Personally, i would avoid the crab - the two times we've tried, little meat in them shells ! then again, for the effort, i think the crawfish is too much of a hassle ( my girl loves them. i go with the shrimp and the sausage - don't be shy about sucking all the spicy/garlicky juices out of the 'ol shrimp head ! )

                                To go from Hot n Juicy to Bar Charlie just cracks me up ! A True Foodie !

                                Happy Eating

                                1. re: kjs
                                  domesticgodess Apr 23, 2009 09:32 AM

                                  Thanks kjs, for the info about hot n juicy. Indeed we will use the bib and not wear our sunday best. LOL.
                                  Last year we went to L'atelier one nite and then lotus of siam the other nite.
                                  Being a foodie is all about finding GOOD FOOD...doesnt have to be expensive to be good, right?..

                                  1. re: domesticgodess
                                    c
                                    cocochanelella May 8, 2009 01:00 AM

                                    I went to Hot n Juicy tonight and the "hot n juicy" sauce was exactly how I like it: lots of garlic, lemon and spicy. The blue crab was really fresh and the meat was sweet.

                                    PLUS: Adam from Man vs Food on the Travel Channel was filming there! He was really nice and took pics with everyone. On one segment Adam explained that the crawfish was from NOLA, blue crab from Texas and Crab from San Francisco.

                                    1. re: domesticgodess
                                      Food Tourist Jun 7, 2009 08:45 AM

                                      dg, how did Lotus of Siam compare to our best Thai in Toronto? I've eaten at Sukhothai and Mengrai in Toronto and only want to go to Lotus in Vegas if it's more "authentic" or tasty.

                                      1. re: Food Tourist
                                        d
                                        Dave Feldman Jun 7, 2009 11:28 PM

                                        I'm not sure what "authentic" means, but LOS offers many Issan and northern Thai specialties that neither Toronto restaurant offer. LOS isn't as cheap as Sukkothai, although most of the more expensive offerings, featuring fresh high-quality fish, aren't offered at either Toronto place. So in that sense, it isn't Mom and Pop. But it isn't as "fancy" as Mengrai, and Mom and Pop, Saipin and Bill, and there all the time, except when Bill is foraging for ingredients.

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