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Sep 5, 2012 08:26 PM

Lunch downtown at 11AM tomorrow

Coming down for a meeting on the 4000 block of Wilshire. Would love to grab a good lunch before hand, but not sure of what's near me. Anything nice nearby? I had honed in on Sushi Gen, but not sure of the wait time if i get there a bit after 11AM? Also, if i'm kind of a sushi snob, will I really enjoy it? hard to tell but I get the sense that it gets raves for lunch because of the value, but is the sushi on par with a 15 east / yasuda in NY or some of the high end places in LA?

Thanks in advance!

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  1. Wait a minute, the 4000 block of Wilshire puts your right smack dab in the middle of Koreatown. It's a good 10-15 minute cab ride to Sushi Gen in Little Tokyo. Besides being far away, as a sushi snob you will not appreciate Gen.

    You might as well try Korean, like Buil Samgye Tang, Myung, or Miari. Or All Angelo for Italian or Pollo A La Brasa for Peruvian chicken.

    If you don't want ethnic, maybe Sophia.

    7 Replies
    1. re: ipsedixit

      i didn't want to guide too much, but Korean was my other thought. But here's my worry... if i go to a grill your own meat place, which I clearly prefer, I end up going to my meeting smelling like K-BBQ. Maybe not a deal breaker if meeting with Chowhounders, but could be an issue otherwise :) So, where can I go in K-town, get better food than the slop I get in the Bay Area and still not smell like beefy goodness?

      And yes, I already contemplated bringing a change of clothes, but will be joined by other colleagues who are not willing to take that step. Damn them!

      1. re: FattyDumplin

        Would be slumming it a bit, but hard to get a tastier lunch than the chicken special at Dino's -- Pico at Berendo, two blocks west of Vermont. Order and pick up at the counter -- less than $10/pp all in.

        Could have a nice lunch at Taylor's, an old-time steakhouse in K-town which is often recommended for some of the best-value steaks in town. Full service, and good service.

        1. re: nosh

          what kind of chicken? roast / fried / grilled? i'd be down for that, unfortunately, the co-workers will want to go higher-end.

            1. re: FattyDumplin

              Just so you know, Dino's does a marinated half-chicken, doused in a reddish vinegary-garlic-turmeric (and much more) "sauce" and then flame-grilled. Served over a huge bed of french-fries with a cup of cole slaw and three tortillas wrapped together so they never come completely apart. All of $5.50! Ask for extra "sauce." I'll admit, some of the chicken might be a little dry, but pull off a piece and wrap in a shred of tortilla with a couple of those drenched fries and a topping of a little of that slaw -- a fantastic bite.

          1. re: FattyDumplin

            Lot's of great non-BBQ Korean options. My favorite is Mapo House for griled makerel and dough flake soup and purple rice bibimbop.


            1. re: FattyDumplin

              Ham Ji Park for Gamja Tang (pork neck/potato soup) and ribs will leave your clothes smelling fine and your belly happy.

          2. Based on your criteria, I would just try to talk them into Park's BBQ. Their ventilation is decent, but you will still smell like meat. Nothing else around there fits that well as far as being high-end and CH-worthy. They can cook them meat for you, or if you wanted to do it yourself, you can do that too. Don't know if you've been burned by that before or something, but I've never had an issue with Park's cooking it for me.

            The wait at Sushi Gen, if you got there around 11 and missed the first wave of seating, would be maybe 30 minutes after opening (11:15), unless you just wanted to sit at the sushi bar. There's usually no wait for that, but you can't order the lunch sashimi special.

            All the chicken plate stuff that is good and around the area is very casual and cheap.

            For the old school, and more formal vibe, you could go to Pacific Dining Car, which isn't really chow-worthy. You can tell your colleagues that a scene in Training Day was shot there.

            Also, I can't imagine people would complain about Langer's, even though it's not higher end.

            1. Perhaps the new Spanish Fly at 3800 Wilshire. I liked the chef/owner's prior restaurant in Culver City and was sorry to see him leave Cafe Livre.


              1 Reply
              1. you could go for korean style sushi/sashimi. it's a different beast all together than traditional sushi but an experience none the less. couple of my faves is wassada and a-won.

                don't go expecting nigiri that blows your mind. get sashimi platters that will come with red leaf lettuce and condiments. combine and eat.

                1. Thanks all for the recs. I really want to try some of hte mentioned chicken places and the korean sushi place sounds interesting. Alas, my flight was a mess this Am and I got to LA downtown way to late for anything more than a quick bite at a local deli. Next time...