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Wakasanchi

It makes no sense to me how bad Japanese food is in America. Especially in L.A. and S.F. there are large enough populations of native Japanese peoples that you’d think there would be some good restaurants. Although there are some good sushi places, almost without fail anything that is not sushi in pretty craptacular. There are a few places that are okay but none have been true Japanese food.

That is until now. Wakasanchi is 100% authentic. Everything I was given was not in the least bit out of place from my experiences in Tokyo. The “Omakase” or leave it to the chef thing might be a little off putting for some but I think it’s for the best because unless you’ve lived in Japan you would not know what or how to order.

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Baja Bud’s

My favorite place for a carnitas(pork) burrito.  Baja Buds is a chain.  If you have a friend how does like Mexican food take them to Baja Buds.  Order a carnitas burrito with guac and mild salsa and have them give it a try.  If they don’t like it something’s wrong. ;-)

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California Roll Factory & Sushi

I was pretty skeptical of this place but I was pleasantly surprised.  First I must mention that California Roll and most of the other rolls you see in a sushi restaurant in California are not Japanese.  You won’t find a California roll in Japan nor a spider roll or a rainbow roll or a caterpillar roll or a crunch roll etc…  That doesn’t really mean anything because most of those rolls can be pretty delicious.  The majority of my Japanese friends love these rolls.

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Sanamulang Cafe

Sanamulang Cafe is in the middle of Thai Town.  I didn’t even know L.A. had a Thai town but it does.  I’m not sure what the boundaries of Thai Town are but Hollywood Blvd east of the 101 for a few miles seems to be the area.  Samamulang doesn’t seem to be a Thai restaurant.  It’s a mix of various Asian foods but it’s good, and it’s cheap.  Parking leaves something to be desired.  Expect to have to double park and leave your keys with some guy your not sure is actually in charge if you come at a crowed time.

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The Hump

The Hump is some of the best Sushi / Sashimi on LA and it’s in a cool location to boot.  It’s actually at the Santa Monica Airport.  Sounds strange but it’s definitely cool.  I’ve only been here once but it was most certainly an unforgettable pleasure for my mouth.

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T.C.B.Y (The Country’s Best Yogurt)

T.C.B.Y. is a national chain of frozen yogurt / ice cream shops.  It’s nothing special, at least for me, but you’ve got to see this.  They have something they call "Rainbow Cream".  It’s vanilla ice cream with a TON OF FOOD COLORING!!!!   Of course kids love it.  I tried it and it was fine BUT, the next 3 times I when #2 I colored the water quite a dark shade of blue.

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Tommy’s Hamburgers

See (O.C. Dining)

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Johnnies

I don’t know what to say about Johnnies.  I was just driving around and I saw this.  It’s on Sepulevda south between the two Washingtons.  The claim famous French Dip and Pastrami sandwiches.  I tried it out and it was pretty good.  It’s a small place but it looks like it either gets very crowed or used to get very crowed because there are lots of tables outside.

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Soot Bull Jeep: Korean BBQ place

If you are going to try Korean BBQ and you’re in LA this is the place to do it.  It’s dark and hot and full of smoke coming from the coals that you cook your own food on so expect your clothes to smell like Korean BBQ when you leave. 

It’s on 8th somewhere between Vermont and Western (3136 W. Eighth St)

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Marukai

Marukai is a store similar to Mitsuwa.  I’m not sure if they are also a chain.   As for food they have more selection than the Costa Mesa Mitsuwa and they have better prices.  They require a $10 membership but generally you’ll save more than $10 over Mitsuwa on your first trip.

They also have some Hawaiian foods although they are all frozen.  They have pork, chicken and fish lau-laus and they have kalua pork and kalua chicken as well as some poke mix and laup-chong (a sweet sausage that Hawaiians like especially in fried rice)

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