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Question about Sushi Gen

The last two times I've tried to have lunch at Sushi Gen (422 E. 2nd St., (213) 617-0552), there's been a line out the door and as a result, I've had to go elsewhere. This despite the fact that I left my office at 11:30 and got there well before noon.

Is there a trick to avoiding the crowds when lunching at this place? And, in related vein, if you go to Sushi Gen and find it too crowded, where is your backup lunch spot in Little Tokyo. (I've been going across the street to Iza-yoi, which is okay, but doesn't really bowl me over.)

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  1. I would go either real early, begin waiting in line before 11:05 (they open at 11:15), or I would go very late, like 10 minutes before closing. If there's a wait by the time they close at 2, they usually start letting people sit at the sushi bar to order their lunch specials. The lines have been getting worst since they reduced the dining area (they took out the little room to expand their kitchen.)

    A backup to Sushi Gen is going to Sushi Go 55. Though I still find sushi gen to be better.

    3 Replies
    1. re: slbear

      Thanks slbear. Is Sushi Go 55 crowded, or will we be able to walk right in? Also, how's the parking?

      1. re: David Kahn

        Sushi Go 55 is located in the same plaza as Mitsuwa, 3rd floor.There's plenty of parking there and is free.

        1. re: David Kahn

          If you go at, say, 12:30, you might have to wait for a table but you should be able to grab a seat or two at the sushi bar.

      2. As slbear says above, go early or go late. Is Itza-yo the place in the same mall as Starbucks and Blimpie's?

        2 Replies
        1. re: revets2

          Yeah, sorry. I usually always try to include addresses, etc.

          Iza-Yoi
          132 S. Central Ave.
          (213) 613-9554

          It's actually pretty good, and very reasonable. Also, free parking in the Office Depot lot.

          1. re: David Kahn

            i think it's pretty good too, especially if you want to straddle the super traditional with a little more ponzu sauce. be careful about that parking lot, though. more than 60 minutes and it's tow city.

        2. As slbear says above, go early or go late. Is Itza-yo the place in the same mall as Starbucks and Blimpie's?

          1. Sushi Komasa is pretty good. It's on 2nd street, just past Central on the north side.

            1 Reply
            1. re: ladius

              oops, I didn't realize they're not open for lunch. my bad...

            2. Sushi Go 55 , it opens at 11:15a and there is never a line. I actually like it better than Echigo, regarding the lunch special. Almost as good as Gen which is a regular stop.