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Feb 26, 2009 11:11 AM

Alternative to Sushi in Little Tokyo

My wife and I have always made a special trip to Downtown Little Tokyo's Shabu-shabu house for lunch or dinner. The wait, however, gets to be rediculously long, sometimes and our patience and tummies get the better of us.
Can anyone recommend other japanese dining spots in the area that specialize in non-sushi cuisine ?

Thanks fellow CH'ers!

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  1. Raku II, in Honda Plaza on 2nd Street, offers excellent izakaya cuisine.

    Daikokuya, on 1st Streeet, has decent ramen noodles (though the wait can be long at times also).

    3 Replies
    1. re: J.L.

      Go to Toshi's. and tell him you don't want any sashimi. But you still want omakase. Prepare to be amused.

      1. re: TonyC

        Kokekokko for solid yakitori.

        Orochon also has excellent ramen.

        Honda Ya has a fun pub-type atmosphere for Japanese small plate dishes. Not top quality, but very reasonably priced.

        TOT / Teishokuya of Tokyo has nice selection of good, non-sushi items like oyako don.

        1. re: urbanfoodninja

          I went to Orochon last weekend, and I thought it was kinda mediocre. The noodles and chashu were okay but not great, and the soup was only marginally better than what you get by combining boiling water and the dry seasoning packs from a bag of instant ramen. A LOT of packs, because it was way too salty. It was the only time in several years that I couldn't finish the soup when eating ramen.

          IMHO Daikokuya is better, but nowadays, I'd rather drive to Asa in Gardena, or Shin Sen Gumi, assuming I wasn't planning on doing anything else in LT afterwards. Waiting for a seat at Daikokuya will take almost as long as the drive, and those two places are better.

          There were some decent places inside the mall where Mitsuwa is, but I haven't been there in several years (not since the first bibimbap place appeared in there), so I don't know what's still in there.

    2. Has anyone tried the steakhouse in Honda plaza?

      1 Reply
      1. re: tissue

        Yes, and it was not a good experience. They were out of many things on the menu. And a couple of the things we were served were NOT fresh. I would not go there again. Ever.

      2. I like all of the following non-sushi restaurants in Little Tokyo:
        Curry House in Weller Court
        Koshiji Yakatori in the Weller Court
        East Japanese Restaurant
        Ebisu is OK.
        Haven’t been in a while, but all the restaurants in the New Otani. I ate at the tempura bar last year there, and it was great.

        1. I like Honda Ya at the former Mitsuwa center. It has a broad selection of Yakatori items.


          1. Skip dinner and just go to Fugetsu-do for dessert.

            1 Reply
            1. re: ipsedixit

              Thanks for all the recs. I feel more confident driving to Little Tokyo with all these alternatives.