Like the name implies, Bob’s is a diner that feels like it was shipped directly from the Islands and placed in Gardena. The walls are lined with leather booths and T-shirts from island high schools, and of course, everyone from the kahiko to the keiki are eating local favorites like Spam musubi and steaming bowls of saimin. The food here is uncomplicated and pretty close to what you’d get in-state, like the salty kalua pork (which is made without cabbage and thus, is on the crispier side) and the silky, butterfish-stuffed laulau, both of which come on the aptly named “Hungry Hawaiian” combo plate. If you want something sweet, the macadamia nut pancakes should also be a top priority - they’re thick, fluffy, and come smothered in a butter sauce so rich it just booked a first-class flight to Honolulu.
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Kotohira is a tiny noodle shop in a Gardena strip mall with a giant menu of udon, ranging from curry to creamy to green mochi.
Eatalian Cafe is a huge food emporium in Gardena, with fantastic pizzas and baked goods.
If you’re in Gardena for breakfast (or anywhere close), you need to head right to Painter’s Tape for their excellent Japanese-influenced cafe food.
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Jus’ Poke in Redondo Beach serves poke like you’d get in Hawaii, with a few kinds of tuna options and really good toppings.
Fish King is a market in Glendale that has mastered all things seafood - from New England-style fried baskets to true Hawaiian-style poke.
Walking into Mainland Poke for the first time is like being high at the Apple Store. You’re overstimulated and super into it.
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After a massive overhaul on all fronts, the Culver City spot is finally the Hawaiian luau it was always meant to be.
Otafuku Noodle House
Otafuku is an excellent Japanese restaurant in Gardena that treats cold soba noodles like a science.
Shin Sen Gumi Yakitori in Gardena is an institution where you go to eat tremendous meat skewers in a low-key space.
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