OMG Omakase…

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I cheated.

I am a one sushi bar woman, but I was strangely attracted to another.

Hamasaku was a treat.

Last week, I ventured out to try my hand at a very reasonably priced Omakase menu.

This is an oxymoron as Omakase usually starts at $150 per person.

I read about Hamasaku, a small restaurant in a innocuous strip mall in Westwood, California.

Hamasaku
Hamasaku

The exterior does not speak to you, but once inside the atmosphere is serene with clean lines.

Hamasaku photo:laeater.com
Hamasaku photo:laeater.com

Hamasaku was transformed last year by Marwan Al-Sayed, using repurposed materials from the old interior.

Interesting point, Hamasaku is owned by former CAA president, Michael Ovitz who infused the restaurant with pieces from his personal art collection.
Executive Chef Yoya Takahashi photo: hamasaki.com
Executive Chef Yoya Takahashi photo: hamasaki.com

Executive Sushi Chef, Yoya Takahashi, now rules the sushi bar.

Chef Takahashi was born and raised in Kyoto, Japan and moved to Los Angeles with dreams of becoming an actor like his grandfather.

While making ends meet, he quickly found the comfort of home behind the sushi bar in Little Tokyo.

Now he makes magic at Hamasaku.

We did not encounter any notable sightings, but purportedly it is a celebrity hangout with many rolls named after the rich and famous.

Our server was a lovely purple haired Japanese woman.

The menu is extensive, including robata, an endless list of rolls, sashimi, salads, small plates and crispy rice. We opted for the 14 course Omakase.

Sake
Sake

The meal kicked off with a wonderful sake, Chrysanthemum Mist-Kikusui which was smooth, faintly fruity and semi-dry.

We opted for the Sushiomakase ($55).

Miso with Razor Clams
Miso with Razor Clams

Our first course was miso soup with razor clams.

Sushomkase
Sushiomkase

The 14 piece Omakase arrived in one large round bowl.

The chef’s choice sushi was amazing…sweet, fresh, tasty. It included halibut, mackerel, uni, ikura, yellowtail, toro, octopus and much more.

Every individual piece was excellent and melted in your mouth.

The ginger and wasabi were both so fresh.

Rock Shrimp Tempura
Rock Shrimp Tempura

We also ordered rock shrimp tempura…excellent, lightly battered, crispy with saikyo miso aioli ($14).

Chanwamushi
Chawanmushi

After we finished the Omakase we were served Chawanmushi, an egg custard with shrimp, shimeji mushrooms and mitusba.

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The dessert was excellent, as well. It was a green tea infused dessert with fresh whipped cream and a plump raspberry.

For a delicious, serene dining experience, try Hamasaku…you will not be disappointed.

Hamasaku
Hamasaku

Hamasaku 11043 Santa Monica Boulevard Los Angeles, California. Open Monday-Friday 11:30am-2:30pm and 5:30-10pm. Saturday 5:30-10:30pm and Sunday 5:30-9:30pm. Reservations on OpenTable.com. Street, mall and valet parking.

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