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Izakaya Honda Ya

There's a new Izakaya restaurant in little tokyo called Hondaya. Seems like they're pretty famous in Orange County. I made a visit the other day, the food was good, variety of sake, and the good thing was I didn't have to look for parking and it was free!!!! They close at 1:00 in the morning. I'll guarantee you a good time. Have any of you heard of the place??

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    1. re: kitchenhag

      I'm assuming LA if he referenced Little Tokyo. This would be best posted on the LA board.

    2. Yes, Honda Ya is an OC perennial favorite. I was in Little Tokyo last Sunday, looking for the new one you talk about. Couldn't find it. Where is it exactly? We ended up going to Daikokuya (which I thought paled in comparison to Santoka).

      Here is my post of Honda Ya in Tustin. The original!


      1 Reply
      1. re: elmomonster

        It's located at
        333 S Alameda St, 3rd floor
        Los Angeles, CA 90013
        (213) 635-1184

        Same place as Mitsuwa, same floor as Sushi Go 55.

      2. http://www.chowhound.com/topics/427605

        We certainly have heard of it! :) I'm a big fan of the one in Tustin, and can't wait to try out the one in the old Yaohan plaza.

        1. I have never thought much of this place myself. I don't like the way they cook their meat/fish and their menu does not reflect the season IMO.

          I think Musha in Torrance is a better option personally (I think Musha is just okay, but their menu is better and reflects whats in season). On the downside, Musha is very crowded and your often sitting elbow to elbow with the next person.

          Musha is next to Japantown on Carson and Western? (I believe)

          1. I've never had a bad experience at the Tustin location. Everything's been great. (with the exception of some long waits) I'm currently dating a Japanese ESL student (from Osaka) and we go there with her Japanese student friends about twice a month. They claim that for izakaya, it's about as good or better than the handful of other izakaya places in SoCal. In fact, two of her Japanese friends are based in LA and they trek it out to the OC fairly often because the they dig the Tustin/Costa Mesa/Fountain Valley Japanese scene. [They actually prefer the OC Shinsengumi over the Gardena location because they claim the service is better.] I would not recommend ordering non-izakaya items at any izakaya joint. Stay away from sushi and ramen. And ignore the dinner section.

            1. After all the raves on this board for the Tustin Honda-ya (and the Little Tokyo location, too) I went to the Little Tokyo restaurant recently with an empty tummy and (unfortunately) high expectations. What a disappointment! And, I'm not going for the "I didn't order the right menu items" excuse; if it ain't good and/or if you have good ingredients and fail miserably in the execution, it shouldn't be on the menu. period. Blech!

              3 Replies
              1. re: yinyangdi

                Alright, I'll bite.

                What DID you order?

                1. re: yinyangdi

                  Same Assessment here. There is nothing that we like at Honda Ya and we've tried it in Tustin a half dozen times. It's like a Mc D , always busy but the food sucks.
                  We have tried dozens of menu items which are average at best , but the Sushi is really Horrible.
                  My suggestion for a Superior Experience would be Kappo Sui in Santa Ana Heights.

                  1. re: russkar


                    I would agree with russkar. Having gone to Honda-ya (Tustin, CA) at least ~10+ times over the last 4 years or more, my friends and I all prefer going to Kappo Honda and Shin Sen Gumi (both on Brookhurst in Fountain Valley). Both of those places' food are superior to Honda-ya.

                    However, if you're only in the Tustin area and don't want to drive out, then, sure Honda-ya is a decent choice.

                2. I went to Honda Ya prepared to be wowed, but wowed I wasn't. The skewers were all mediocre and weren't on par with Shinsengumi. One dish that I liked though, was the baked mochi cheese balls.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: cynthia105

                    If you are looking for more upscale and creative food from a izakaya then try Izakaya Zero in Huntington Beach. It has been open a couple of months now.

                    1. re: cdmedici

                      By now I have seen a few threads mentioned Izakaya Zero in HB. Anyone care to compare it with Ikko in Costa Mesa? :-)

                      As for the Honda Ya in Little Tokyo, I'll avoid at all cost... as I have read one after another disappointed hounder dishing about their experience...

                      Ikko Japanese Restaurant
                      735 Baker St Ste C, Costa Mesa, CA 92626

                      Izakaya Zero
                      412 Walnut Ave, Huntington Beach, CA