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Sep 6, 2008 03:35 AM

Which are the better Sushi Bars in Jtown?

I am going to dinner with a buddy whom lives in a loft on 6th and Spring Downtown. Which are the better Sushi Bars near Japan Town? Thanks for your help

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  1. R 23 at 923 East 2nd Street. It's in an alley off 2nd that's below Alameda, and between Garey and Santa Fe. They have valet, but sometimes (depending upon the hour) there's street parking.

    3 Replies
    1. re: toitoi

      i like sushi gen quite a bit better than r23. r23 is way overpriced, IMO, and I like something a little more traditional. sushi go 55 is by far my favorite sushi in little tokyo.

      1. re: toitoi

        Is this recent data, Toitoi? I've heard unfavorable bleats about R23 recently....

        1. re: SecretAsianMan

          I've not been in about 3 months... so I can't comment on your question. But, I've always had good food there.

      2. Try Sushi Komasa.

        I don't really consider R23 a sushi bar, per se, but they are good. Same for Sushi Gen.

        1. Sushi Gen can be the best, although IMO undeservedly overcrowded. Not because it's not good, but it's not THAT good. Izayoi with Jun at the bar can be a better and more creative experience, but it's also crowded and the other chefs are definitely not as good.
          Go down Beverly about a mile near Virgil to Shibucho if you want a great Omakase experience with Shige, but remember your manners...

          3 Replies
          1. re: cls

            i believe sushi gen is best, but agree that it's overcrowded. it's also a bit pricey. most often i go to komasa, hama, sushi go 55, and r23. my opinions of these places seem to fluctuate every time i go to them.

            takumi is another one to try. i've been there once and thought it was good, perhaps in the same league as the others, but drearily empty. on the plus side, you can walk right in and have a (probably) good sushi meal there.

            1. re: aventinus

              I'd like to see some recent update info from Takumi regulars, if any are reading. We eat there once-in-a-while, and I think they're OK, or OK+; but based on the pre-opening talk, I was hoping to be wowed. Hasn't really happened.

              Now I haven't had their omakase, and maybe it's wonderful (I'm hoping...) and the owner's choice of music's pretty cool, but while the Chow-spouse likes it, I'm finding I want to go to Gen or Izayoi more often....

              1. re: aventinus

                I don't think $25 for a massive platter of good quality sashimi is overpriced, particularly when it includes several generous slabs of pricey toro, when the same fish served ala carte would cost double, or more... (the lunch special is $16 for a smaller but still generous platter, and both include miso soup and various small salad dishes)

                Mr Taster

            2. Ironically Little Tokyo's sushi isn't that great.

              I should qualify this post by saying I've only had lunches at any of these places (I work next to Little Tokyo.)

              Sushi Gen's sushi is very good and fairly expensive, but their sashimi lunch special outstanding and a bargain. I think that's what draws the crowd, because even when there's a line a mile long for lunch, you can usually be seated at the sushi bar immediately (cuz they don't serve the sashimi special at the sushi bar.) Not even sure it's crowded at night due to the fact you can't get the sashimi special for dinner.

              I found R23 to be good with interesting dishes but very overpriced.

              I had the same experience as Aventinus re Takumi: I found it to be a worthy competitor to Sushi Gen but was/is always so drearily empty haven't been in a long, long time.

              I've been to Sushi Go 55 a few times and did not like it as much as Sushi Gen; but sometimes it's nice to be seated right away at the expense of having an inferior meal. I'm guessing dinner is better at Sushi Gen than at Sushi Go 55 albeit more expensive.

              Izayoi has a sushi bar but I've only had izakaya there, never straight up sushi.

              Sounds like I'll have to give Komasa and Shibucho a try. Are they open for lunch?

              5 Replies
              1. re: chowmominLA

                Sushi Gen and R23 are both really good! Little pricy, but good. Zencu has 1/2 price all day and sushi is okay. Enjoy!!!

                1. re: chowmominLA

                  Sushi Gen always has a wait during peak lunch and dinner hours

                  1. re: andytseng

                    Look like my Buddy would like to dine at Sushi Go 55 thanks for all your advice and comments..

                    Sushi Go 55
                    333 S Alameda St Ste 317, Los Angeles, CA 90013

                    1. re: Foodandwine

                      +1 for Izayoi. Steer clear of Sushi Go 55.
                      Report back.

                      1. re: cls

                        I second to stay away from Sushi Go 55. I have given this place enough opportunities and everytime they just came up short. The fish is tasteless, and nothing to rave about. foodandwine should definitely reconsider.

                2. I have found Sushi Go 55 to be somewhat shopworn and anachronistic.
                  Sushi Gen is a bit too "me too" so therefore, for a nice night out, I'd vote for Izayoi hands down. Extremely good toro and nice selection of rolls.