Went to the LA Phil last night and wanted to get a quick bite to eat before the show started at 7:30. We went to Little Tokyo in search of some grub and parked on 1st St. There are so many little places that serve similar things that we just hopped into East Japanese Restaurant since there were 2 tables of people in it and the other places were virtually empty. Menu is filled with all kinds of rolls, but they also have a great selection of various Japanese tapas- grilled fish, octupus salad, ect plus udon, teriyaki and bento boxes. We both ordered the bento box- mine with Chicken teriyaki and husband with Salmon Teriyaki. The box comes with miso soup, bowl of rice, the chicken/salmon/beef teriyaki, a small scoop of Japanese-style potato salad (my favorite!), 2 large shrimp tempuras, 2 veggie tempura (with dipping sauce and daikon), 6 pieces of california roll, and a green salad. Everything was very fresh, the miso was perfect and it was just good ol' downhome Japanese eatin' (a nice change of pace from sushi). The place filled up quickly and we realized it must be a neighborhood favorite. Hardly gourmet but seemingly dependable in simple, hot and fresh food. Will definitely go again and try their udon or ochazuke (rice with seasonings and dried fish in hot water). Offers grilled mackeral, pike, salmon in addition to pork, beef and chicken dishes + the many rolls and yakitori. Tried an order of their albacore sashimi and it was fresh and served with thin slices of carrot, red onion, and radish sprouts covered with ponzu.
Chicken bento box is $9.50, salmon is about $1 more. Apparently they are having "Salmon Mondays! Let's eat Salmon on Mondays!" and have specials and all salmon dishes. Beer, sake, and "chu-high" which is shochu + fruit flavored soda.
Yakitori East Japanese Restaurant
329 East 1st St
Los Angeles 90012