Sin City is home to a lot of restaurants and bars, but there are tons of hidden gems that the majority of Las Vegans aren't unearthing. To help guide us to these potential discoveries, we've enlisted some of our city's food players to share their recommendations for a ly feature dubbed Dining Confidential. Know a chef who wants to share some top dining spots? The tipline is open.
Las Vegas native Jerid Choensookasem, better known as DJ Five, brings more than 15 years of turntable experience to his role as the musical programmer and co-owner of Itsy Bitsy: Ramen & Whisky at The Ogden in Downtown Las Vegas. With visions of DJ Jazzy Jeff and Fresh Prince from Live at Union Square and inspiration from a friend’s brother who was a deejay at a school dance, Choensookasem honed his scratch battle skills starting at age 15. He says that he "obsessively tried to copy all of Jeff’s scratches on that record," and knew that he wanted to be involved in the music industry. That interest turned into a career, putting Choensookasem in Vegas nightclubs including V Bar at the Venetian from 2004 to 2006, Body English and Vanity at the Hard Rock Hotel from 2007 to 2011 and currently holds residencies at The Bank Nightclub and Hyde Nightclub at the Bellagio, as well as Tao Nightclub at the Venetian. Here the food lover shares five of his favorite places to dine when he’s not behind the turntables.
Which restaurants do you turn to when you’re not working?
When I’m not working, I love eating at Kabuto Edomae Sushi, Tonkatsu Kiyoshi and District One Kitchen & Bar.
What dishes are most memorable?
Kabuto has three different omakase courses where the chef selects the best pieces of sushi they have that day. My favorites are the Japanese uni and otoro sushi. At Tonkatsu Kiyoshi, I always go with the chicken katsu and a side of curry. It's Japanese comfort food at its finest! At District One my favorite dishes are the bún bò Huế noodle soup and I customize it with oxtail, or the steak and egg rice dish. This restaurant is delicious and perfect after a long night of drinking.
Why do you enjoy going there?
Each of these restaurants offers the best quality of food and consistently has a friendly staff, which is very important. We are very lucky in Las Vegas to have so many amazing restaurants offered to us, with rarely any wait time. At restaurants in larger cities such as Los Angeles, where I am frequently visiting, guests typically have to wait at least 30 to 40 minutes just to be seated for lunch or dinner.
Would you like to include any other information?
There are so many amazing restaurants in Las Vegas that deserve recognition, but if I could choose two other restaurants to add to my top five they would be Raku and Andiamo Steakhouse inside of the D Las Vegas.