Location: 12244 W Pico Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90064. (310) 826-4737
Date: September 4, 2014
Cuisine: Japanese Sushi
Rating: First rate traditional sushi
Somehow, straight nigiri sushi is mostly a lunch thing for me. And oh do I love it, perhaps no other savory food offers such a consistent yummy bite factor.
Shunji, which took over for the “Mr. Cecil’s BBQ” in this oddball looking building on Pico has developed quite a reputation. Chef Shunji Nakao was an opening chef at Matsuhisa in the day, then opened Asanebo, then The Hump (one of my old favorites). It has quickly risen to the top of the LA Japanese scene.
At night, Shunji offers an amazing and advanced mix of traditional and modern raw and cooked dishes, but at lunch it’s straight sushi.
It might be noon, but great food enjoys some great wine.
1990 Robert Ampeau & Fils Meursault 1er Cru Les Perrières. Burghound 93. A truly wonderful nose of simply knockout complexity features notes of yeast and baked bread along with now fully mature aromas of a variety of floral notes and spice hints that gives way to mineral-suffused round intense and detailed medium full flavors that also offer outstanding depth on the sappy and mouth coating finish. This is drinking perfectly now. A beautiful effort of real style and grace.
This chef cut for me many many times at Takao.
Crab hand roll. This was good, but I probably prefer the kind that the Nozawa disciples make (like at Sasabune and the like).
All and all Shunji is rather fantastic, joining the large repertoire of top LA sushi restaurants. I really have to come back here at night and get a big mega omakase to sample his more “modern” fare. Not that I mind the nigiri, because as I said at the beginning, it really is a classic for a reason.