Better than Matsuhisa??
I'm not trying to start a 500 reply fight over what japanese cuisine is the best in LA, but i reciently went to Matsuhisa and i have to say it was amazing. best i've ever had. please let me in on some of your favorites as well so that i may try as i'm still new to LA, and really just starting to explore deeply into japanese cuisine.
next on my list that i've heard are "a must":
Sushi Katsu-Ya is a pretty good neighborhood sushi place, but not better than Matsuhisa. Asanebo is better than Matsuhisa.
I like the bar at Nishimura more than Matsuhisa.
Just the bar though. It seems like you don't get the same creativity and spontaneity at a table.
Wow, if you have the budget to try Urasawa right after Matsuhisa, go! I would be interested to hear from an admitted newcomer how you view Matsuhisa after experiencing Urasawa. Urasawa will also probably be the beginning of your omakase experience and it will most likely change the way you view sushi forever.
If you can afford Urasaw, skip all other sushi bars until after. You will have a different appreciation of each chef and their individual talents after an Urasawa meal where you have no choice but to experiment. IMO too many people stick to their comfort zone with sushi but given the opportunity can develop new tastes for unfamiliar ingredients.
Please post after Urasawa. (Just a guess, but you may not hold Matsuhisa in such high regard.)
Matsuhisa is the best Japanese I've had in L.A., as well. We did omakase there and were blown away. Haven't been to Asanebo or Nishimura. Can't afford to ever try Urasawa, unfortunately!