Cutie Reviews Issen Joki in Little Tokyo

I haven’t had much experience with Japanese food, because the only fish you’ll catch me eating is fried shrimp– and lox, of course. Or a tuna sandwich, at the Hollenbeck Palms Bistro.

But my grandchildren assured me that there’s more to Japanese food than sushi, and that I’d like their version of home cooking. So we came out to give it a try, to a cosy little place upstairs in the Little Tokyo mall where I get my cream puff fix. I liked it from the start, but I like everything that is close to the house.

The decor was nice, lots of old fashioned wooden chests and hanging cloth. I would bring someone on a date here, especially if they like Japanese food or if they are more adventurous, like my husband.

Now the truth is that I ate Japanese food for the first time in restaurants in Los Angeles many years ago, but I haven’t kept up the habit. I mostly had the shrimp tempura. It was good. It really had to do with all the sauces. That is the secret of good cooking, no matter what part of the world you’re cooking in.

Overall, I was very impressed. We ordered a little of this and a little of that, and I tried all the things that didn’t look too strange. One thing that did look too strange was a shredded white snowy radish covered with hundreds of tiny dried fishes. Apparently it’s one of the girls’ favorites, but not only didn’t I taste it, I did my best to pretend it wasn’t on the table!

But most of what we ordered, I liked. The miso soup was bland, but very good. The lightly fried tofu chunks in salty sauce were wonderful — well, I don’t know whether I liked the soy sauce or the tofu, but together they make a wonderful dish. I felt similarly about the eggplant, which also had a delicious sauce–whichever the best part was, together they make a wonderful dish.


I haven’t had much experience with Japanese food, because the only fish you’ll catch me eating is fried shrimp– and lox, of course. Or a tuna sandwich, at the Hollenbeck Palms Bistro.

But my grandchildren assured me that there’s more to Japanese food than sushi, and that I’d like their version of home cooking. So we came out to give it a try, to a cosy little place upstairs in the Little Tokyo mall where I get my cream puff fix. I liked it from the start, but I like everything that is close to the house.

The decor was nice, lots of old fashioned wooden chests and hanging cloth. I would bring someone on a date here, especially if they like Japanese food or if they are more adventurous, like my husband.

Now the truth is that I ate Japanese food for the first time in restaurants in Los Angeles many years ago, but I haven’t kept up the habit. I mostly had the shrimp tempura. It was good. It really had to do with all the sauces. That is the secret of good cooking, no matter what part of the world you’re cooking in.

Overall, I was very impressed. We ordered a little of this and a little of that, and I tried all the things that didn’t look too strange. One thing that did look too strange was a shredded white snowy radish covered with hundreds of tiny dried fishes. Apparently it’s one of the girls’ favorites, but not only didn’t I taste it, I did my best to pretend it wasn’t on the table!

But most of what we ordered, I liked. The miso soup was bland, but very good. The lightly fried tofu chunks in salty sauce were wonderful — well, I don’t know whether I liked the soy sauce or the tofu, but together they make a wonderful dish. I felt similarly about the eggplant, which also had a delicious sauce–whichever the best part was, together they make a wonderful dish.

I was surprised to enjoy the cold buckwheat noodles as much as I did, since I think that’s the same stuff as is in Harry’s pillow. Was it better than his pillow? I don’t know–I don’t taste his pillow. But these noodles had that same yummy sweet/salty sauce, and they were a treat.

The service was good. No complaints. They are running it well. They cater to families and treat the customers nicely. The food is good. It was interesting. Families come here. You should come and bring your children.

Issen Joki Restaurant
333 S. Alameda St. # 301
Los Angeles, CA 90013

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