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LA Sushi: Sushi Zo (Apr. 2013)

April 22, 2013 2 comments

Author: Victor
Restaurant: Sushi Zo
Chef: Keizo Seki

Date: April 19, 2013
Dinner #1

Notes:

(I really should not have eaten here hahaha. I made a reservation for 5:30 p.m., two hours before my Yamakase reservation at 7:30 p.m., and I ended up eating 38 pieces of sushi here… somehow. I’m faaaaaaaat.)

Sushi Zo is often a contender for second-best sushi in LA; other contenders include Mori Sushi, Kiriko, and so on. (Urasawa is pretty much first in my book and many others’ books.)

Sushi Notes:

Chef Seki is known for his warm rice, and it reminded me a lot of Sasabune’s rice. It was REALLY soft and fluffy—I think Chef Seki’s philosophy is that warm rice helps you focus on the taste and texture of the fish more. (However, there’s that whole controversy where people are against warm rice and so on. Oh well.) Anyway, the rice wasn’t quite as warm as Sasabune’s, and it broke apart less (as a result of that, I think). Also, the nigiri pieces were smaller, so the warmth of the rice wasn’t as big of a deal to me.

The fish was very fresh, and there was a decent selection of the normal fish you see as well as fish from Japan. I kind of wish they used less condiments, but that’s entirely up to the restaurant and chef, and I enjoyed the sushi regardless. Still… it would have been nice to be able to taste and focus on the fish by itself, free from condiments such as sea salt or yuzu.

Click here to see pictures of the food!

LA: Mélisse (Dec. 2012)

December 23, 2012 1 comment

Author: Victor
Restaurant: Mélisse
Exec Chef: Josiah Citrin

Date: December 22, 2012
1st Dinner

Notes:
-My friend Simon was in town for a day before going to San Diego for a short vacation, so we decided to make some plans to eat! We made reservations for a first dinner at Mélisse and then a second dinner at The Bazaar. (We figured that we might as well eat as much as we could while he was here!)
-Overall, it was an enjoyable meal with solid service and very well-cooked food. Thankfully, we weren’t too full after. We finished at about 9:30 p.m., 30 minutes before our Bazaar reservation, giving us time to prepare our stomachs for more eating!

Click here to see the food!

LA: OOtoro Sushi (in Walnut, CA) (Dec. 2012)

December 20, 2012 2 comments

Author: Victor
Restaurant: OOtoro Sushi (in Walnut, CA)
Chef: Kai Wei “Kurt” Chen

Date: December 19, 2012

Notes:

It was my first meal in SoCal since August, and I wanted to go with some friends to try this sushi place I’ve heard about. I don’t know why they have wagyu from Kobe, Japan (what people know as kobe beef), or kama toro (the collar bone of the bluefin tuna). It’s basically in the middle of nowhere—I’m not sure how they’ll be able to sustain business at this place haha.

After finding out that this place had kobe beef and kama toro, though, I knew I had to try this place! Finals just ended, so it was a nice excuse to go eat delicious food and drink a bunch of sake haha.

The menu has four omakase options, and the names are basically different grades (C, B, A, and A+), with each option rising in price and quality. The menu lists the food in the C, B, and A options. There’s a fourth option, A+, that’s just described as “best in season” haha. Anyway, we went with the “Omakase A+” option. (On another note, I wonder if the omakase options are named like that to target Asians…)

The fish was really good (especially the kama toro—but, then again, you can’t really go wrong with any kind of toro haha). The rice really wasn’t too great, however. At times, it was warm but a little too hard; at other times, it was cold and very hard. Overall, I think it qualifies as a pretty solid/good sushi restaurant with really high-quality fish/meat. Unfortunately, the rice could definitely improve a bit. For now, it might not be worth the price.

Click here to see pictures of the food.