Perfect For: Casual Weeknight Dinner

Another year, another restaurant from the Gjelina crew with a name that takes a minute to figure out how to pronounce (it’s “Mountain”). For their fourth Venice restaurant, they’ve opened a walk-in only izakaya also on Abbot Kinney. Everything from the dumpling wrappers to the ramen broth and noodles is made in house, and most dishes have something added that make them fancier (and more expensive) than your standard Japanese pub food. The tomato salad has a bit of wasabi, a plate of mushrooms comes roasted in yuzu butter, and the ramen that everyone is ordering comes with a pile of clams. In a surprise twist, there’s also none of the usual Gjelina attitude here - service is friendly and helpful, and you’ll be able to hear your friends when they talk. Just be prepared to wait for your table for a while - some things haven’t completely changed.

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