The Best New Sushi In LA
Seven fresh spots to add to your raw fish rotation.
This city is home to some of the best sushi in the country, ranging from decades-old institutions to unmarked shops in far-away strip malls. After all, who wouldn't be inspired to serve sushi in California, given our proximity to the sea, fresh produce, and this song by BAYLI and Junglepussy. So, if you're looking to add a new name to your sushi rotation, here are some exciting restaurants that need to be on your radar.
Looking for our all-time favorite sushi in LA? We’ve got a guide for that, right here.
The Best Sushi In Los Angeles
photo credit: Yusei Kanda
This sleek, 10-seat omakase bar in the Arts District costs $300 per person (before tax and tip), which is a serious financial undertaking for just about everyone. But if you’re looking for an upscale sushi experience, or just celebrating a recent Powerball win, 715 Sushi offers something special and unique. The always-changing selection of nigiri is exceptional and handed to you by an Osaka-born chef who originally came to America to play basketball. Also, it’s fun here—compared to other high-end sushi spots, 715 feels like a breath of fresh air. The staff are all young, chatty, and clearly enjoying themselves, which makes the experience feel less like a solemn omakase temple and more like hanging with a group of friends who happen to make amazing sushi.
photo credit: Jessie Clapp
Omakase By Osen
Despite having the word “omakase” in its name, the first thing to know about this casual, blonde wood-lined sushi bar in Silver Lake is that the omakase is not a required activity. You can easily come and order everything a la carte, which is good news if you aren’t up to dropping $180 per person on dinner. The daily nigiri, which go for around $6 a piece, come with fresh, thick cuts, and the hefty hand rolls, filled with things like baked king crab, fried eggplant, and white fish with truffle, are excellent. There’s a solid sake list, too. If you’re on the Eastside looking for a fun midweek dinner spot with friends, bookmark Osen.
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photo credit: Edomae Sushi
Sawa gets your adrenaline going from the moment you set out to book a seat. Reservations are rare and competitive, and finding the actual restaurant (which is more like a secret eight-seat sushi vault inside of a Little Tokyo parking structure) takes some serious problem-solving skills. Once seated, you’ll feel like a pampered poodle as you eat your way through the 18-piece omakase. And while the mostly traditional Edomae-style nigiri are very good, the real highlights are the cocktails, or rather, the cocktail pairing option. For $45 you can pick any three from the menu and let the masters behind the bar course them out alongside the omakase.
If you’re undaunted by a drive deep into the Arcadia suburbs, Kisen is a real destination: the rare sushi restaurant that lands in the middle of a good price/great selection/high-quality Venn diagram. Run by a chef who spent years at Sushi Gen and Shiki in Beverly Hills, the dedication to detail here is apparent in the perfectly vinegar-seasoned rice and pristine seafood that’s been aged in traditional Edomae style. There’s an $80 minimum to sit at the blonde wood bar, but spending that much will get you a kingly meal and the focused attention of whichever skillful chef is slicing the goods that day, which might include seasonal fish like skipjack tuna and goldeneye snapper imported from Japan. Otherwise, try the dine-in sushi sets—they’re Lexus finesse on a Mitsubishi budget.
photo credit: Kat Hong
Introverts should avoid Beverly Hills’ newest sushi restaurant. A meal here functions like an open mic night: jokes of varying funniness are flung out and audience participation is mandatory. At the center of it all is magnetic Hilo, a Maui-born chef who almost certainly was an entertainer in a past life. While other omakase spots ask for your preferences mostly out of obligation, the chef here is genuinely curious to know your likes and dislikes. Did you mention a love of silver-skinned mackerel? You got it. Meal prices are calculated by the fish, meaning you could stop in for a quick snack or a four-hour saga, depending on the night. The standard omakase hovers around the $200 mark and features a quirky array of non-traditional nigiri and Hawaiian fish like opakapaka (pink snapper) and kahala (greater amberjack).
photo credit: The Brother's Sushi - Santa Monica
The Brothers Sushi Santa Monica
The Brothers Sushi’s second location in Santa Monica is a huge win for Westsiders. Instead of schlepping to Woodland Hills, this fantastic sushi restaurant has come to you, and brought all its Okinawan jellyfish, dry-aged fish collars, and ora salmon caviar along with it. There are two omakase options (which cost $140 or $200) and various a la carte dishes, but the star of the show is their premium chirashi: a luxury box loaded with 15 types of seafood, seasoned sushi rice, plus a side of miso soup. It’s the culinary equivalent of a 1953 Cadillac Eldorado or this scene from Mamma Mia: 2 Here We Go Again—an instant classic.
Haru Omakase Sushi
Haru is an excellent option if you’re craving sushi in Westwood—and not in the mood to give any more of your money to KazuNori this month. The tiny shop on Westwood Blvd. is takeout-only at the moment, but service is efficient and everything comes packaged looking like a work of art. The menu has everything from bento boxes and carpaccio to specialty rolls and a daily sashimi board, but our pick—particularly during lunch when it’s $30—is the chirashi bowl. Filled with 12-15 pieces of premium fish ranging from toro to raw scallop, it’s the perfect treat-me lunch without burning too big of a hole in your wallet.
Kogane is exactly what the San Gabriel Valley lacked, a high-end omakase spot in the land of dim sum and mouth-numbing Sichuan peppers. Is it our favorite sushi in the world? Not quite, but for $100 at lunch and $250 at dinner, you probably won’t find a superior option in Alhambra. It’s run by two seasoned sushi chefs who you’ll see standing behind the bar, cheerfully chatting with repeat customers as they slice toro, red snapper, and mackerel into silky, uniform pieces. We prefer to come at lunch—it’s an easy, breezy meal that lasts for about an hour and begins with an umami-packed prawn miso soup and ends with ahi hand rolls. Plus, there’s a Jamba Juice next door in case you’re in need of dessert (as we always are).