A good sushi place
Since I intially jumped on this board with a negative note, I'd like to post something positive.
By strange coincidence, right across the street from Sea Empress there's a great place for sushi. It's not a sushi bar, they only serve take-out. The overall tone of the sushi is delicateness. Because I'm a vegetarian, I now only eat the inari and it's the best I've ever tasted. Instead of the usual too much soy sauce, oversoaked, flacid bean curd pouches, Sakae's is light colored with the proper ratio of soy sauce and sugar.
In my pre-veg days, I also ate the nori-maki, ebi, mackeral etc. and can vouch for their quality as well. They do make a California roll (blasphemy!)but they boast that they use real shrimp. The prices are more than reasonable, they range from .60 to .75 cents a piece. And you're going to love how they put your order in a box, wrap a logo laden white paper around it, tie it up with string and stick a chop stick on top. This is definitely a place that does not believe in cutting corners.
Here's their address and phone number:
1601 Redondo Beach Blvd. (Actually the shop faces Denker Ave.)
And, no, I have no affiliation with them. I'm just a very long time satisfied customer. They are a little hole-in-the wall that never was hurting for business.
This is the best sushi place we've found in L.A. We live in Los Feliz and don't get to Gardena too often, but if we're anywhere in the vicinity we'll stop by for a box or two. And, the California roll is the best of their varieties.
Sakae is good of its type, but it must be kept in mind that what it serves is essentially the good version of supermarket sushi--great for a quick takeout lunch or a picnic, but not precisely fine dining. In the (extremely sushi-intensive) area, I have always liked Tsukiji, at Western and Redondo Beach Blvd. in Gardena, a modernist, Tokyo-style sushi restaurant with extremely high-quality fish.
I agree with Pepper's assessments of both Sakae and Tsukiji. The sushi at Tsukiji has some interesting non-traditional touches. It's also one of the few places where you can get blowfish in season. It's crowded, so reservations are advisable.
Another good place for sushi that hasn't to my knowledge been mentioned on these boards is Saito's Sushi on Sunset Blvd. east of Hillhurst. Saito used to be a sushi chef at Katsu on Hillhurst, and when Katsu closed down, he opened his own place. He makes heavenly monkfish liver sashimi (ankimo), and his spanish mackerel is always a favorite of mine. Last time there, he prepared scallop sashimi from a large, whole fresh scallop, by preparing the scallop muscle, the rim meat, and the liver separately. Delicious!