This was our very first stop on our Dessert Tour. As the name suggests, Sweets Raku is a restaurant that only serves sweets! What better place to start our tour than a restaurant dedicated to pastry? Sweets Raku is the sister restaurant of a very popular, local restaurant, Raku. Raku is a Japanese inspired restaurant led by Chef Mitsuo Endo whereas Sweets Raku is Japanese French style dessert restaurant concept. Raku Groups executive pastry chef, Mio Ogasawara from Japan, serves up some delicious desserts. While Sweets Raku provides desserts to Raku restaurant, they create an entirely different dessert menu for their own shop. During lunch, Sweets Raku does serve a few sandwiches, foie gras, cheese plates, selections of caviar and prosciutto. Now onto the main attraction….dessert! Sweets Raku has a dessert prix fixe menu which contains an amuse, main dessert, and a petite four.
Sweets Raku has a great ambience. It is very white, which usually can make a restaurant feel a little sterile, but Sweets Raku feels very classic especially with their awesome open kitchen where you can see the bakers plate your desserts and watch your soufflés rise. They also have a wine cellar the divides the entrance from the dining room, and I will definitely have to try some of their wine next time. Now their bathroom is incredible! I am going to leave the bathrooms a secret surprise for those locals who haven’t visited and those who find themselves in this iconic city 🙂
It is open seating but if I were you, I would definitely sit at the bar so you can see into the kitchen.You get the ultimate experience this way, but it is popular so grab that open seat if you can find one! Now it wouldn’t be a dessert restaurant if the menu wasn’t edible! Yeah…your first sweet taste is your menu! Made with rice paper and food coloring ink, it comes with a delicious apricot sauce for dipping. Now make sure you know what you want before you eat your menu haha though I am sure they can always bring you another.
Adam got their dessert of the day, Chocolate Banana Pudding Souffle. I am pretty sure he got the dessert just so I can taste it too because when I see the word “soufflé,” I must have it. Same goes with Tiramisu, it is my absolute favorite, period. Our cat is named Tiramisu! (Though I will never eat her which I remind her everyday). With that being said, I ordered the Stella, a Strawberry Tiramisu. Adam and I were lucky enough to eat at the bar so we watched Adams soufflé go into the oven while the baker plated my dessert. The baker was using tools I have never seen before and will not even try to explain, but hopefully my pictures can give it a little justice.
“Jack in a Cup” Chocolate Banana Pudding
I was a little disappointed in this dessert. Like I said before I love soufflés but this unfortunately did not meet my expectations. I always love watching a soufflé rise, and the kitchen’s oven is crystal clear so we were able to watch the whole process. The baker had a piping device which he used to inject vanilla sauce into the soufflé. The vanilla sauce and banana pudding then started to ooze out and made my mouth water just looking at it! Candied nuts and colored cubes of fruit marshmallows lined the plates. The chocolate soufflé was nice and hot, and at the bottom of the dish sat a chilled banana pudding. The chocolate soufflé part itself was nice and rich, but when I reached the banana pudding it was so frozen and cold that with the contrast of heat I got caught up in the temperature differences and lost the flavors. Do not get me wrong I love contrast of heat and cold, but to me this just did not work. In fact, great desserts do have different components however they should come together to make one cohesive dish. However, in my opinion, this dish just felt like two individual desserts served on the same plate. All in all, Jack in the Cup was good just nothing special.
“Stella” Strawberry Tiramisu
This dessert was pretty “stellar”. See what I did there? 🙂 I loved watching this dessert come together. Don’t get me wrong, I love actually eating the desserts but, being in the industry, I find the assembly and platting of the desserts to be the most rewarding. This dessert was absolutely beautiful! Almost every restaurant has a play on the famous traditional, tiramisu, but Sweets Raku took a totally unique approach. It was like a strawberry shortcake and traditional Italian tiramisu had a baby. Instead of your classic ladyfinger cookies, the base of the dessert was an almond-soaked financier, similar to a sponge cake. They took a pre-baked cake and place it in a steamer. While the cake was being warmed, the baker plated a light strawberry mascarpone mousse using a device that I have never even seen before. Then they piped a strawberry/raspberry sauce and sprinkled pink dust on top. Fresh grapes, blueberries and raspberries are plated along the strawberry mousse. The bakers then piped cream around the edges of the cake. Next, they placed freshly cut strawberries on top in the shape of a flower and finished piping the cream on top to finish the look of a flower. Some strawberry sauce was spooned into the middle and again finished off with cream, pink dust and a golden leaf! A quenelle of strawberry sorbet is spooned in the middle of the plated mousse and lastly the prepared cake is then placed on the plate to complete the dessert. Very stunning! The cake was delicious and nicely balanced with the sweetness of the strawberries and light cream. Every component of the dessert worked perfectly together.
After reviewing Sweets Raku from memory, I think may have to sacrifice and go again. 🙂 I did enjoy the experience and do want to give this place a second chance. It was a good first time experience, but for all the hype it receives I believe I can have an even better experience. There are still more playful desserts to experience and taste. I remember seeing a dessert one table over that has my name on it.
5040 West Spring Mountain Road Suite 3
Las Vegas, NV 89146
M – F: 6pm-12am
Closed on Wednesday