In search for something thrilling for my taste buds in Las Vegas, I leave the Strip and head to a strip mall in Chinatown. A 10 minutes taxi ride takes me in front of a restaurant called Hot N Juicy Crawfish.
I don’t have a reservation but the spacious dining room has plenty of tables available. The friendly waitress leads me to a corner table covered in plastic sheets, on top of it is a thick paper towel and nothing else. It all makes sense – the best way to enjoy crawfish is to eat it with your hands, since forks and knives will only be in the way of you cracking and sucking these juicy morsels.
When Tim Nguyen and Laina Vo noticed that their favorite seafood – live crawfish was missing in Las Vegas’ restaurant scene, they decided to open Hot N Juicy Crawfish. The crawfish is freshly flown in from Louisiana daily and are boiled in the Hot N Juicy Special sauce – a mixture of sugar, salt, pepper, onion, garlic, Cayenne pepper, butter, fresh lemon juice and secret Cajun spices. When the cooking is done, these crawfish are transferred into a plastic bag and served to the table.
As I eagerly open my sizzling bag of Crawfish, the hot steam wafts through the air and filling it with aromas of various spices.
Now my mouth is watering, I hope the taste will be as good as I anticipated it to be. I break the head off the crawfish, suck the head, my taste buds are instantly invaded by an army of flavors – including all the ingredients I mentioned above, and maybe with a hint of turmeric or cumin, I am not completely certain. But it taste so delicious I lick the sauce off the shell before breaking it off, now a small piece of meat is exposed, all that effort for this tiny bite of meat you say, let me tell you, it is the sweetest piece of meat you will taste, so yes, it is totally worth it.
Now at Hot N Juicy Crawfish they offer various types of seafood such as shrimp, lobster, clams, king crab with five kinds of sauces but the Hot N Juicy Special is the way to go. If you cannot handle very spicy food, they also offer four spice levels ranging from mild to extra spicy. I went with medium and it was very spicy.
The secret sauce Tim Nguyen concocted is the key to his success because it tastes good with anything. Now you can find Hot N Juicy Crawfish not only in Las Vegas, but also in Washington DC, Orange County, Los Angeles and Florida.
I still think about these delicious crawfish, and since I am far away from Las Vegas or the other branches, I am determined to cook it myself, just so to ease the desire of a food addict.
Hot N Juicy Crawfish Las Vegas
4810 Spring Mountain Rd. Ste C-D
Las Vegas, NV 89102
Sun-Thurs: 12:00 pm -10:00 pm
Fri-Sat: 12:00 pm – 11:00 pm