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Jan 31, 2011 09:27 AM

Century City: Why must we suffer like this? - Sen Asian Kitchen

I received the following promotional email today. I probably would have tried the restaurant as soon as it opens except I was forwarned by the following email from management.

Text from restaurant. Commentary my own.

Enticing New Restaurant Brings Asian Flavor To Century Park: Sen Asian Kitchen Opens at 2000 Avenue of the Stars on the Promenade of Cafes on Monday, January 31, 2011

Sen Asian Kitchen has arrived on the hip, LA scene with a fresh approach to Asian style cuisine. [Fresh as the suburbs of Iowa City]

Along with traditional Chinese dishes such as orange chicken, beef and broccoli, won ton soup; fresh sushi will be served made to order. [I am already scared. Orange chicken, won ton soup, and “fresh sushi” should not be together.] …

The new restaurant, designed by the world-renowned Thomas Schoos (designer of Tao, Koi, The Penthouse, etc.), celebrates its location on the Promenade of Cafes at Century Park with a contemporary enriched Asian theme... [“Contemporary enriched Asian theme”—is this English?]

Upon entering the 100-seat restaurant, customers are greeted with grand, contemporary bamboo light fixtures. Exposed vintage barn wood adorns the walls, modern tables with tables and community style seating available for those who like to talk to their neighbors. [Er, no]

The back wall houses the sushi bar with head sushi chef and mastermind, Ryota Okumura…. [Anyone want to lay odds on this “mastermind” ever working the line”?]

With fresh sushi made daily, it’s near impossible not to satisfy all of your Japanese cravings. [Wait—what about the orange beef? I thought this was Chinese, oh right, “Asian.”]

With creations such as the Avenue of the Stars roll, a vegetable roll covered with fresh albacore served with crispy onion and pesto sauce [this is the most horrible sounding dish I’ve ever been forced to hear about] and Baked Crab Hand Roll with a choice of spicy mayo, now being a classic roll for many high end restaurants (served at a lunch price), [Right- because a spicy crab roll is only served by “high end restaurants” and not ever sushi lunch truck disguising krab] chef Ryota’s culinary glory will not disappoint. [Let’s all take a moment to reflect on this statement, yes, you heard them, “culinary glory”] In conjunction with the traditional favorites of Chinese cuisine, fresh salads will be served daily including the Arugula Endive salad, Chinese Chicken salad, Main Mein salad and Asian Pear salad. [ So now we have fast food Chinese, sushi worthy of “culinary glory”, and arugula salads.]

But honestly, perhaps I am wrong? Any intrepid hounds out there? Reports please. I can’t bear to the legwork myself on this one.

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  1. I feel your pain.

    But can't really blame them, can you? Supply will meet demand. Market forces. Oh well.

    1. I used to work in the tower adjacent on CPE and this will fit right in. The D-girls will love it.

      2 Replies
      1. re: Das Ubergeek

        Excuse my ignorance, but what, who, are "D-girls" ?

        1. re: JBC

          D is for development. D-girls read scripts and they tend to concentrate in large quantities in Century City.

          As a stereotype, they're not known for culinary sophistication... think fruity sweet drinks in cocktail glasses, clothing far more expensive than their position and a need to go wherever is trendy, even if the food is awful.

      2. Hilarious!!!!!
        Dumb Dumb Main Mein

        1. Fulfilling my duty to the board, I went to Sen's Asian Kitchen as soon as they opened up this morning to beat the anticipated mob. Actually, it's not as bad as you may think, mainly because this is really a food court type of eatery, not a sit down restaurant, which limits the amount you can be overcharged. There are four cashier/order takers, and even though I arrived right at 11 am opening time, I still had to wait as all four spots were already taking orders. You have the option of taking the food back to your office or sitting at the tables inside and outside. As already mentioned, the menu is a hodgepodge of Chinese and Japanese food. I went with the steamed chicken dumplings, which were unusually dry, though edible. Entrees are $10, plus or minus, with the most intriguing item being fried rice made with crab, asparagus and egg white, for $12.95. This is a lunch only operation, and they close at 4pm. So given the location and its limited function, this place probably isn't a bad idea, though you'll never catch me here again.

          9 Replies
          1. re: Chandavkl

            Thanks for the recon mission, Colonel Chandavkl.

            1. re: Chandavkl

              Thanks. Sounds more like the horrible Patina run Army basic training camp we used to have.

              I'd love to know whybeverything in CC and the mall costs more or less $10. I can't tell if it is a conspiracy, the price point required to break even, or some other mystery.

              1. re: JudiAU

                I think this is better than the Patina Asian Kitchen. Wasn't some of their stuff pre-cooked?

                1. re: JudiAU

                  "Sounds more like the horrible Patina run Army basic training camp we used to have."

                  Is that Swill Hut, Judi? :P

                  1. re: Professor Salt

                    I am so proud you remember Professor Salt. =)

                  2. re: JudiAU

                    Thank you!! I went from working in the SGV, where Chinese food was abundant and cheap, to working in CC, where it was not hard at all to lay out $15 for lunch.

                    1. re: Das Ubergeek

                      if i found myself spending that kind of money on lunch in CC everyday, i'd probably ask the folks at OBIKA mozzarella bar to reserve me a spot at their bar for lunch everyday.
                      their food rings my bell.
                      their DineLA menu, is a good value too.

                  3. re: Chandavkl

                    I'm surprised you got in. We showed up on the first day to try it and they had a woman turning people away at the door because of "problems in the kitchen." A minute later, the fire alarm went off.

                    We decided to wait a week or so before going back.