J.L.'s Profile

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sudden poke craze in LA/OC

Just waiting for a Caribbean poke joint to open up, to be called PokeMon...

Shunji Update: More Seats at the Sushi Bar!

Indeed. Regal-grade XLB meets imperial-quality SJB in just your average street in Communist SH...

1 day ago
J.L. in Los Angeles Area

Shunji Update: More Seats at the Sushi Bar!

Hey those two places were right across the street from each other in SH! I was just being, um... efficient? :-)

1 day ago
J.L. in Los Angeles Area

Mori Sushi Premium Omakase + YOLO = YOLOmakase

Doable. Simply communicate to Maru-san your request for a premium nigiri omakase and that you prefer non-fatty neta.

1 day ago
J.L. in Los Angeles Area
2

ISO Good food near Children's Hospital Los Angeles

Dessert alert: After a week or so of soft opening, Churro Borough (ice cream sandwiches made with churros!!!) is now open on Vermont (Grand Opening is TODAY, as a a matter of fact).

Churro Borough
1726 N. Vermont Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90027

Shunji Update: More Seats at the Sushi Bar!

On a Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday night, such a feat is possible, with a decent chance of success. Especially if you attempt it solo.

But I recommend following Japanese etiquette and still call ahead to let them know you are coming in, even if it means you are only 5-10 minutes away. Calling also serves to gauge the real-time situation at the sushi bar, and furthermore allows Shunji-san and crew allowance to do at least some last-second prep-work for your impromptu omakase.

Il Grano?

Mori-san (Morihiro Onodera, the original Chef at Mori Sushi) is Chef Sal's friend, and they collaborate sometimes on that annual tomato dinner series at Il Grano. Just a FYI...

Shunji Update: More Seats at the Sushi Bar!

That meal was so epic that I actually do remember the finer details: I repeated the akami (once more), the kinmedai (once more), the kamasu (twice more), the murasaki uni (once more), and the bafun uni (twice more).

But yes, Shunji is renowned for offering seasonal neta not typically found in most L.A. sushi-yas.

Apr 16, 2015
J.L. in Los Angeles Area

Il Grano?

Thanks for reporting back! I hope this report doesn't signify a "downhill" slide for this place - I will return soon to see/taste for myself.

Yes, I agree that Wadatsumi by Harikawa does have, surprisingly, really great crudo. And their wagyu hitsumabushi is one of the great beef dishes of L.A. right now.

Shunji Update: More Seats at the Sushi Bar!

My record at Shunji: 51 pieces of nigiri (after the otsumami plates and before the "everything sweet you got" dessert platter).

Apr 16, 2015
J.L. in Los Angeles Area
2

Shunji Update: More Seats at the Sushi Bar!

Attention all Shunji fans: The sushi bar at Shunji has recently been expanded, and now has 14 seats - and it looks like a really nice change. The new cypress wood bar is beautiful.

Hopefully now it's easier to score a reservation at the sushi bar during those coveted dinner hours. Enjoy.

Apr 16, 2015
J.L. in Los Angeles Area
2

Omakase west of the 405

Congrats on the addition of the Chowpup.

Now onto your request: Omakase west of 405...
Bottom line: You should consider Mori, Shunji and Kiriko.

Apr 15, 2015
J.L. in Los Angeles Area

Mori Sushi Premium Omakase + YOLO = YOLOmakase

These days, I believe Mori-san divides his time between Uruguay (he cultivates his rice crops there) and L.A. (he just created a line of earthenware for Wally's Vinoteca in Beverly Hills recently).

On the topic of tuna, the best bite of akami I had in L.A. last year was BY FAR the aged Spanish akami at Shunji. It may be farmed, but the taste of that Spanish tuna was every bit as complex and gorgeous as the wild Pacific bluefin I had at Sawada in Ginza 2 years ago. It epitomized the conundrum of truly great sushi: So seemingly simple at first glance, yet so deceptively profound in its variations.

Now that the yen is so weak, I need to make plans for another tabearuki to Japan soon...

Apr 15, 2015
J.L. in Los Angeles Area
1

Event dinner in DTLA

Redbird is your best bet. Do an earlier reservation to experience the sun go down on the patio as you dine.

Apr 15, 2015
J.L. in Los Angeles Area

Mori Sushi Premium Omakase + YOLO = YOLOmakase

Dayum.

Apr 14, 2015
J.L. in Los Angeles Area
1

What does New York have that LA doesn't?

Starting with fatty fish is a noob play on the part of the chef, who is assuming the diner is uninitiated, and will thus be inevitably "wow'ed" by it.

Apr 14, 2015
J.L. in Los Angeles Area

Planning an eating trip, need some input (Japanese, Korean, fine dining, Taiwanese, regional Chinese, Vietnamese, coffee, raw oysters etc)

Hehehe... it looks like you just missed me at Bulgarini by a mere few hours.

I too, was bummed about the Leo's pistachio gelato not being ready yet. But a half kilo of the best hazelnut gelato in the United States will somehow tide me over until my order of pistachio is ready. :-)

Apr 13, 2015
J.L. in Los Angeles Area
1

ipsedixit's Top 10 Dim Sum

Sea Harbour is a "BYOM" type of joint...

Apr 13, 2015
J.L. in Los Angeles Area
1

Il Grano?

Never had a bad meal there.

Il Grano features extremely competent Italian (not red sauce Italian-American) fare, prepared with love by Chef Sal. His crudo is top-notch.

I always look forward to dining there. AND the dining ambiance is (get this) - quiet!!! You can actually converse with your dining companions!

Weekend Pop-Up Breakfast on Sawtelle at Restaurant 2117: A Pictorial Essay

Indeed.

Apr 12, 2015
J.L. in Los Angeles Area

Planning an eating trip, need some input (Japanese, Korean, fine dining, Taiwanese, regional Chinese, Vietnamese, coffee, raw oysters etc)

Glad you enjoyed the food at Mori & Shunji!

Seafood Paradise is worth the trip. Definitely. Bring a cooler if you wanna bring any of their live stuff back home.

Apr 11, 2015
J.L. in Los Angeles Area
1

Weekend Pop-Up Breakfast on Sawtelle at Restaurant 2117: A Pictorial Essay

Breakfast has never been the strong suit on Sawtelle Boulevard, but this new pop-up aims to change things up at Restaurant 2117.

Chef Taka Narui (of L'Orangerie, Matsuhisa, & Lucques) has taken over the kitchen on Saturdays and Sundays, and features a classic breakfast menu with a dash of Japanese sensibility. On my visit, everything was well-prepared and delicious. The wagyu hash with scrambled free-range egg and miso biscuit was ridiculously good. The organic fried tofu with ginger sauce definitely will wake up your taste buds.

Service was friendly and prompt. They serve coffee and juice as well.

Verdict: A very welcome addition to Sawtelle Japantown, offering a wonderful (and much-needed) breakfast option.

Best Korean BBQ - cooked for you - not cook your own

+1

Apr 10, 2015
J.L. in Los Angeles Area

n/naka

Let me know if you need help with the reservation, dnd...

Apr 10, 2015
J.L. in Los Angeles Area

Planning an eating trip, need some input (Japanese, Korean, fine dining, Taiwanese, regional Chinese, Vietnamese, coffee, raw oysters etc)

That is a marvelous establishment.

Apr 09, 2015
J.L. in Los Angeles Area

Planning an eating trip, need some input (Japanese, Korean, fine dining, Taiwanese, regional Chinese, Vietnamese, coffee, raw oysters etc)

:-) Apologies. I have a friend who insisted it was a Shanghai-ese creation, and we had a mini WWIII about it a few weeks ago, and since then the phrase Macanese dan taat has been seared on my mind...

Apr 09, 2015
J.L. in Los Angeles Area

What does New York have that LA doesn't?

When all else fails, camp out by the original Halal Cart.

Apr 09, 2015
J.L. in Los Angeles Area
2

What does New York have that LA doesn't?

Some parts, yes. :-)

Apr 09, 2015
J.L. in Los Angeles Area
1

n/naka

Fantastic modern kaiseki.

My advice is to grab a seat and do it before director David Gelb's (of "Jiro Dreams of Sushi") new Netflix series on Chef Niki Nakayama comes out. It'll probably be next to impossible to score a reservation after the premiere.

Hawaiian poke

Hehehe... Sounds great, except I may have a property in the area so close to Kawamata that we could just take beach cruisers from my place.

Apr 08, 2015
J.L. in Los Angeles Area