We’ve got news for real raw-fish aficionados: The legit sushi snobs in L.A. aren’t dining at scenester spots like Izakaya, or even BH's high-falutin' Urasawa. They’re feasting on sashimi at strip malls and under-wraps Japanese joints. In fact, there’s a sea of stealth sushi spots around here that boast authentic-as-it-gets chefs and boat-to-table fare; you just have to know where to look (and it ain’t Yelp, friends).
That's why we cast our net wide and rounded up all of the go-to restos that insiders would only begrudgingly share. From a Bob Marley-themed place on Pico to a downtown local-loved teeny eatery, you’ll definitely want to take the bait, and nosh on our fave fresh fare. We’ll accept your "domo arigato" in advance!
Photos Via (Clockwise from left): Hirozen, Toshi, Hirozen, Kiriko
If you whiz by too fast on PCH, you may not even see this sweet spot shrouded in Malibu jungle. Chef Toshi serves up some of the yummiest dishes, and you may even spot a celeb or two in their sweats. We live for the Ganja and Vegas rolls, and you absolutely must try the Fried Green Tea Ice Cream for dessert (it's dashed with cinnamon, and divine).
Zooma Sushi, 29350 Pacific Coast Highway (Near Zuma Beach); 310-457-4131.
You know you truly love a place when it's painful to share its addy! This is definitely not scenester-sushi — so don't bother getting gussied up. Two very different worlds meet here on Pico: a rad Rastafarian theme combines cheap Japanese that's our absolute jam. So go ahead and rock out to Bob Marley tunes while you eat amazing albacore and dragon rolls with the stoney chefs.
Sushi House, 12013 West Pico Boulevard (Near South Westgate Avenue); 310-479-1507.
Sit at the bar at this teeny eatery for the most delish spicy tuna rolls served by the happiest chefs in town. This spot has grown more popular with the gentrification of downtown, but we promise, it's worth any wait you may face.
Hama Sushi, 347 East 2nd Street (Near South San Pedro Street); 213-680-3454.
Hirozen's definitely a hole in the wall, but foodies flock to the handful of tables for mouthwatering nibbles. And we strongly recommend that you do too!
Hirozen Gourmet, 8385 Beverly Boulevard (Near North Orlando Avenue); 323-653-0470.
This resto will have your tastebuds screaming "spectacular" from the first course down to the last mini bite. It's Omakase only, which means you're at the whim of the pros behind the raw bar, but why can't your mouth get adventurous every now and then?
Sushi Zo, 9824 National Boulevard (At Castle Heights Avenue); 310-842-3977.
Satisfaction is guaranteed in the flavor department at Kiriko! And they get high marks for masterful service, too. This place is all the rage with L.A.'s expert seafood eaters.
Kiriko Sushi, 11301 West Olympic Boulevard (At Sawtelle Boulevard); 310-478-7769.
Toshi Sushi, 359 East 1st Street (Near South Central Avenue); 213-680-4166.
Hamasaku, 11043 Santa Monica Boulevard (At Camden Avenue); 310-479 7636.
Crazy Fish, 9105 West Olympic Boulevard (At South Doheny Drive); 310-550-8547.
Sasabune, 12400 Wilshire Boulevard Suite 150 (Near South Carmelina Avenue); 310-820-3596.
Restaurant Komasa, 351 East 2nd Street (Near South Central Avenue); 213-680-1792.
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