Hard Rock (last visit: October 2007).

When Nobu opened in New York City, it created a sensation.  Reservations were nearly impossible to get, and its new interpretation of traditional Japanese food was widely praised.  This led to the inevitable branding of the restaurant; Nobu can be found all over the globe.

Meal #1: I found Las Vegas Nobu's sushi highly variable.  The overall quality was OK, but some items (e.g., uni) were poor while others (e.g., ankimo) were good.  Orange and honey flavored sake was interesting but probably not worth repeating.

Meal #2: Since my first meal, I went to Nobu in Miami Beach, sat in the dining room and had the omakase meal.  I enjoyed that a bit more, so decided to give the Vegas location another shot.

The restaurant looks OK, but nothing great.  It's very noisy, in keeping with the Hard Rock atmosphere.  The crowd is mostly young, but I think anyone would feel comfortable here; I did.  Service is pleasant, although all the servers are running around at full speed.

Now, on to the meal:

Overall, the meal was good, but not as good as Nobu in Miami, and not nearly as good as Okada.  At the price they charge ($120), they need to do better.

Meal #3: Based on past meals, I hadn't planned to return. However, I found myself at The Hard Rock Hotel at meal time, and no other choices looked appealing. I decided to go for unusual choices, hoping this would be a strength. This worked out better. My selections:
This was the most satisfying of my meals at Nobu. Nothing was stellar, but everything was good.

Nobu's strength is its new take on Japanese foods.  Its weaknesses are sushi that isn't in the same class with the better places in Las Vegas, and suspect service.  Given such high prices, I'd look elsewhere. If you end up going anyway, see meal #3 for a possible strategy.

The Bill
There's a lot of variation in price, depending upon what you order.  A three course meal might cost $75, plus drinks, tax, and tip.  My omakase cost $120, plus drinks, tax, and tip.

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