Momofuku

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The Cosmopolitan
Las Vegas, NV | MAP

WHAT TO EAT: Pork Belly Bun and Tonkatsu Ramen
EATER TIP: Chicken Sandwich only available 3-5:30pm or after 11pm

I was first introduced to chef David Chang about five years ago when my food show-loving fingers clicked on a Netflix title called The Mind of a Chef, an honest and delectable TV series produced by Anthony Bourdain. I was instantly enamored by chef Chang and his culinary ways: he was talented, frank, and deeply driven to make people's stomachs smile.

Being on the west coast, I was super thrilled when plans were first announced in 2016 for a Las Vegas location of his popular restaurant, Momofuku. A fitting match being housed in The Cosmopolitan, Momofuku Las Vegas opened its doors in early 2017 and I feel very lucky to have had a taste of the menu just before the new year.

I joined Stacy, Sherry, and Gary as we embarked on a tummy-filling adventure. 

  Friendly Neighbors  — The facade of Momofuku showcases the Peach Bar, which is open from 3-5:30 during its Social Hour. Next door is  Milk Bar,  a delightful dessert and bakery shop created by chef  Christina Tosi , which is also part of the Momofuku restaurant group.

Friendly Neighbors — The facade of Momofuku showcases the Peach Bar, which is open from 3-5:30 during its Social Hour. Next door is Milk Bar, a delightful dessert and bakery shop created by chef Christina Tosi, which is also part of the Momofuku restaurant group.

  Peach Bar  — bright neon lights adorn the kitchen side of the Peach Bar, as guests get a VIP view of the evolution of deliciousness. According to my count, half of the cooks wore their hats backwards, so they must be fans of opposite day.

Peach Bar — bright neon lights adorn the kitchen side of the Peach Bar, as guests get a VIP view of the evolution of deliciousness. According to my count, half of the cooks wore their hats backwards, so they must be fans of opposite day.

  Kitchen  — the adjacent view of the kitchen shows a transformation in decor, including intimate lighting, which ebbs into the dining area as well. Above the tranquil chaos, you can see a line of gorgeous clay cooking pots.

Kitchen — the adjacent view of the kitchen shows a transformation in decor, including intimate lighting, which ebbs into the dining area as well. Above the tranquil chaos, you can see a line of gorgeous clay cooking pots.

  Art of David Choe  — once inside the dining room, you cannot help but see a giant 5-panel mural created by artist  David Choe .

Art of David Choe — once inside the dining room, you cannot help but see a giant 5-panel mural created by artist David Choe.

  Umm yeah  — this masterpiece really helped to elevate my appetite beyond my wildest dreams.

Umm yeah — this masterpiece really helped to elevate my appetite beyond my wildest dreams.

And now, onto the food...

  Crispy Unagi Bun   (bacon mayo, pickled daikon, arugula)  — you are likely to see at least a few buns nestled on each table in the restaurant (4 kinds to choose from). They're a firm handful and packed with moan-inducing flavor profiles.

Crispy Unagi Bun (bacon mayo, pickled daikon, arugula) — you are likely to see at least a few buns nestled on each table in the restaurant (4 kinds to choose from). They're a firm handful and packed with moan-inducing flavor profiles.

  Pork Belly Bun   (hoisin, scallion, cucumber)  — im guessing this is the most popular bun of all choices, as this is an easy-to-devour combination of sweet, salty, crispy, and refreshing (and piny too, if you eat the wooden stick...)

Pork Belly Bun (hoisin, scallion, cucumber) — im guessing this is the most popular bun of all choices, as this is an easy-to-devour combination of sweet, salty, crispy, and refreshing (and piny too, if you eat the wooden stick...)

  Dat Sauce Doh  — the buns were delicious on their own, but all of my succeeding bites included baby dollops of ssam sauce, which is made with traditional  gochujang . To many, this could be simply described as Korean Sriracha sauce. 

Dat Sauce Doh — the buns were delicious on their own, but all of my succeeding bites included baby dollops of ssam sauce, which is made with traditional gochujang. To many, this could be simply described as Korean Sriracha sauce. 

  Crispy Potatoes   (truffle tofu, parmesan)  — if you're looking for an add-on side dish, this baby was a pleasant surprise. The potatoes were crisped to a teeth-awakening crunch and a generous dousing of cheese, truffle tofu sauce, and chives. 

Crispy Potatoes (truffle tofu, parmesan) — if you're looking for an add-on side dish, this baby was a pleasant surprise. The potatoes were crisped to a teeth-awakening crunch and a generous dousing of cheese, truffle tofu sauce, and chives. 

  Rotisserie Jidori Chicken   (Japanese curry rub)  — as a lover of curry flavors, the seasoning was excellent and made me want to try new chicken recipes. The skin was crispy and the meat was tender, but at $29 I wouldn't order this half-chicken dish again. 

Rotisserie Jidori Chicken (Japanese curry rub) — as a lover of curry flavors, the seasoning was excellent and made me want to try new chicken recipes. The skin was crispy and the meat was tender, but at $29 I wouldn't order this half-chicken dish again. 

  Tonkatsu Ramen   (pork belly & shoulder, slow poached egg)  — I know I know, it's just ramen, but this was hands-down my favorite dish of the night. Aside from the perfectly cooked pork and the dreamy 63°C egg, the broth was... excuse my French... LE BOMB!! 

Tonkatsu Ramen (pork belly & shoulder, slow poached egg) — I know I know, it's just ramen, but this was hands-down my favorite dish of the night. Aside from the perfectly cooked pork and the dreamy 63°C egg, the broth was... excuse my French... LE BOMB!! 

The Tonkatsu Ramen isn't shown on the dinner menu, so you'll have to ask for its availability.

  Pork Belly (ramen)  — a hearty slab stained with molten yolk.

Pork Belly (ramen) — a hearty slab stained with molten yolk.

  Crack Pie  — when making a reservation on  OpenTable  nearly a month prior, I put in the comments that it would be a special birthday for Gary. At the end of our meal, our waiter Matthew delighted us with a serving of Milk Bar's notorious  Crack Pie .

Crack Pie — when making a reservation on OpenTable nearly a month prior, I put in the comments that it would be a special birthday for Gary. At the end of our meal, our waiter Matthew delighted us with a serving of Milk Bar's notorious Crack Pie.

  Souvenir  — I didn't get to purchase any restaurant paraphernalia, but I was happy to go home with this cheap & cute to-go bag with Momofuku's logo of a lucky peach.

Souvenir — I didn't get to purchase any restaurant paraphernalia, but I was happy to go home with this cheap & cute to-go bag with Momofuku's logo of a lucky peach.

I had a lovely experience dining at Momofuku, but was super sad to have missed out on gobbling up their simple yet famous Spicy Fried Chicken Sandwich (darn you, time constraints!!). But there's always next time, and the likelihood that I will digest this sammie is as high as me losing $5 on a beer-drenched video poker machine.

Viva Momofuku!!