Restaurant: Yakiniku Osen
Location: 3503 Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90026. (323) 426-9455
Date: March 18, 2022
Cuisine: Japanese Yakiniku
Rating: Good, but I hoped it’d be better
Yakiniku Osen is a newish A5 Yakiniku place in Silverlake. I imagined it was somewhat like Yazawa.
It’s just street-side on Sunset in busy Silverlake.
There is a fairly tight interior.
And a small but nice set of patio tables with built in grills.
We sat outside.
From my cellar: 2005 Taittinger Champagne Comtes de Champagne Blanc de Blancs Brut. JG 95+. The 2005 Comtes de Champagne is a stunning young wine. The bouquet is deep, pure and youthfully complex, as it offers up a very classy blend of pear, delicious apple, fresh almond, incipient notes of crème patissière, chalky minerality, brioche and just a whisper of vanillin oak in the upper register. On the palate the wine is full-bodied, focused and rock solid at the core, with exquisite balance, refined mousse, crisp acids and simply superb length and grip on the seamless, youthful and oh, so promising finish. The style of the 2005 vintage gives this some early accessibility that was not evident with the more tightly-knit 2004 out of the blocks, but this wine has the structure to also age long and very, very gracefully. It has been a year since I last tasted this wine and it has started to show more precision to go along with its early generosity and is a classic in the making. My gut feeling today is that it will be superior to the 1989 version, to which I compared it to a year ago. Brilliant wine. (Drink between 2015-2045)
2010 Dominique Lafon Meursault. 93 points. The 2010 Meursault emerges from the glass with notable elegance and class. This is a slightly more restrained, nervous style than fans of Comtes Lafon have become used to over the years. The 2010 is made from parcels in Petit Montagne, Charmes and Narvaux that belong to Dominique Lafon and that were once used in the Comtes Lafon Meursault. (Drink starting 2013)
Decanted into a narrow/tall water beaker. Moderate sediment. Initially, watered down and a muted nose of red fruits. Two hours later, aromatics increased – the most unbelievably ridiculous nose of dried red berries . Light bodied. Moderately long finish. A gorgeous wine. I don’t know if it improves, but it held in the beaker and only improved with air.
1997 Altesino Brunello di Montalcino Montosoli. VM 92. Intense garnet with ruby reflections. Opens with wonderfully sweet tobacco scents and spicy cedar. In the mouth there are nicely delineated, fresh flavors of anise, mocha and roasted coffee, the whole supported by very soft tannins, and the rather smoky close conveying an essence of raspberry. Although there are no hard edges in this sleek and mellifluous medium-bodied wine, it does not possess quite the depth and concentration of the best Brunellos of this vintage. (Winebow, Hokokus, NJ)
1997 Diamond Creek Cabernet Sauvignon Volcanic Hill. 93 points. Dark red violet color; intense, ripe cassis, berry, plum nose; tasty, berry, cassis, plum, cedar palate; medium-plus finish.
The menu is long. We ordered almost everything!
A5 Wagyu Beef Uni. A5 Wagyu Beef Tartare with Uni, Garlic, Crispy Sea Trumpet and Caviar. Delicious. Sweet sauce on the beef pretty much hid the uni.
A5 Wagyu Gyoza. Groudn A5 Wagyu Beef, Tofu, Mixed Vegetables, Glass Noodles. So (temperature) hot that it could have been anything inside.
Chawanmushi. Japanese Steamed Egg Custard with Uni and Caviar. Fairly runny custard.
Amaebi Carpaccio. Yuzu oild dressing, Red Pepper, Black Pepper, Chive. Not the greatest shrimp, but the pepper and dressing were pretty good.
Staemed Awabi (abalone) with abalone innards dressing.
Lobster Carpaccio with Caviar and Somen Noodle, Creamy Dressing. Butter-like sauce was reat on the noodles.
A5 Wagyu Tataki Salad with Spicy Citrus Dressing. Delicious strong tanyg/sweet sauce. Microgreens had a nice bite. Meat was quite cold.
A5 Wagyu Beef Diced Steak with Sweet Shrimp and Chimichurri Dressing. This is was one of the weakest dishes.
Honey Citron Sorbet.
Tallow to grease the grill.
3 Kinds of sauce: salt and pepper, house-made wasabi, and yuzu-koshu
Assorted Vegetables and Mushrooms.
Veggies on the grill.
A5 Japanese Wagyu Sukiyaki.
Marinated A5 beef for the sukiyaki.
Egg to dip it in.
Truffle A5 Wagyu Beef Hot Pot. A5 Wagyu Beef, Chive, Ala Minute Dashi Rice, Fresh Black Truffle, Sesame Oil, Tsuyu, Shoyu Marinated Egg Yolk.
Smash that yolk.
Sukiyaki pot beginning to boil. For those that don’t know, Sukiyaki is like the sweet soy/dashi stock version of shabu shabu. You coat the beef in raw egg and then cook it briefly in here, or cook it then coat it with raw egg (which will cook on the hot beef).
Special Alligator from the chef.
Berry Panna Cotta.
Red Bean Ball.
Sesame Ice Cream and dried fruit.
Sesame Ice Cream, Red Bean Cake, and Syrup. Like most of these very Japanese desserts, sweet without intense flavor.
Sesame Ice Cream, Cake, and Syrup.
Very fun meal and good food. Far away (Silverlake is not only far but one has to battle some significant traffic). Many of the dishes, particularly the straight up grilled A5 and the sukiyaki, were quite good, but many of them were hit and miss. The chef is trying some new things here, but not always successfully. It’s not nearly as focused nor as good as Yazawa, although it is quite a bit cheaper.