9824 National Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90034
Phone: (424) 201-5576
Bike Parking: Yes
Wheelchair Accessible: Yes
Cuisines: Japanese, Asian, Sushi
Takes Reservations: Yes
Outdoor Seating: No
Pets Allowed: No
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This is the best sushi bar in LA, (I can even say that they serve the best sushi I've ever tried! And I grew up in Japan:). It's a bit pricy but worth every penny. If you know what the good sushi is (If you think California role is sushi, then don't even bother) and looking for amazing sushi to try, I highly recommend this place.
07/08/2011Provided by Citysearch -
Food is amazing. Every time I come here, I feel like I never want to leave. Very chic atmosphere with a relaxing mood.
The service is great and the staff really does a terrific job at taking care of you.
The appetizers are delicious.
Theres plenty of places to park: theres a parking lot across the street and a parkin garage up the street within walking distance.
Most of the time I find myself looking at my watch waiting for the food to come, but here I was so entertained with the fun atmosphere that I was pleasantly surprised when my food arrived
02/12/2011Provided by Citysearch -
the place reminded me of a ""subway"" chain. fish is of quality as at R23 , but not as good as at Nozawa,but with a price premium of almost +35%. the Omakase is as basic as it comes,nothing to compare to what you'll get at Matsuhisa, but you'll still pay the same prices as Matsuhisa . The ambiance is cold and sterile. tables wobble on the tiled floor and need to be adjusted every time you touch the edge of your table top. Waitresses are not well informed/versed in little talk,they rather serve you as if they were ""robots"". Sake selection is very limited and insignificant . All in all it is a place to ""forget about""...
01/22/2011Provided by Citysearch -
If you like your standard sushi selections, large pieces of fish, and putting as much soy sauce on your sushi as you like, don't go here.
If you are family with children, don't go here.
If you only like sushi rolls, tempura, or chicken teriyaki, don't go here.
However, if you are a sushi purist, are adventurous, and like mouth watering morsels of fresh fish that melt in your mouth, go to Sushi Zo and trust Kazo-San with your ultimate dining experience.
What to expect when you get there:
* You will be asked to turn off your cell phones while you dine there.
* If you sit at the sushi bar, and it is a busy night, chef/owner Kazo-san will likely not speak much to you since he prepares almost every piece of fish that goes out to his customers. If you go on a slower night however, he can be quite friendly. We've been going there for years and he always remembers us.
* They only serve Omakase (chef selection) and you will not be given a menu. You can tell them if you have any dietary constraints, or don't like particular types of fish. I personally don't like Octopus so I always ask them to leave it off the menu.
* For each selection, you will get one small mouth-watering bite of food (mostly raw). Each piece they serve you is prepared exquisitely by the owner/sushi chef and is intended to be savored in and of itself. They will tell you whether or not to use soy sauce on the fish since some of the selections are already seasoned with special sauces or salt.
* They will serve you fish in a very specific order. You'll likely start with oyster, maybe an uni/squid dish, and sashimi, then move onto lighter sushi, sushi with textures (i.e. sweet shrimp, giant clam), a couple of cooked selections (butterfish, unagi) and finally the crab hand roll.
* You will be able to try 20-25 different types of food, and many fish that you never encounter in other sushi bars. For example, they will sometimes serve you pompono, ono, needle fish, a few variations of mackeral, and all of them will be good.
* You will need to tell them when you want to stop eating. Make sure to save some room for the blue crab hand roll when you are done eating sushi. It is a heavenly ending to top off the rest of the sushi.
* When you are done, they typically serve you a small mouth-cleansing dessert drink that tastes a bit like yuzu. It's a perfect way to finish your meal.
Your total bill will typically vary between $70 to $120 per person depending on when you tell them to stop feeding you. If you drink sake, your bill will be more than that. This place is definitely a splurge and caters to a specific type of clientele, but everything we eat here is head and shoulders better than any other sushi place I've ever been to, including Sasabune which has a very similar model.
I once sent two of my co-workers here for a splurge while they were in town for one night, and they could not stop thinking about the food for a week. It's that good.
05/14/2010Provided by Citysearch -
some of these rave reviews posted below MUST be planted by interested parties.
don't fall for this ""it's tradition, don't disrespect the chefs""! that's bull. I have lived in Japan and it's THEY who show mutual respect to the customer, he and she who keep the business alive.
Never was i treated the way that i now know is the usual for this uppity WAY WAY overpriced strip mall sushi pit.
Like the rest of the REAL reviews, the sort of ok, but sort of unpleasant waiter asked us what we didn't like. We said we liked everything
So, he started bring these micro mini pieces of fish with a little rice stuck underneath...one slow and plodding piece at a time. And that ridiculous ""soy sauce, no soy sauce"" bull. At first we thought it was funny...but it got old fast. I know how much soy sauce i like. And believe me, when it was all said and done, i paid for every drop of soy that i used 1-thousand fold!
We ate what was put in front of us and it was ""ok"". nothing special.
Since the waiter didn't have the courtesy to explain their system...when we thought we were done and would pay for our pieces...we said so and they brought us a seaweed roll to finish up. We had no clue that these little pieces they were offering us were more than $100 per person!
When the $225.00 bill was presented to us, i was so shocked that I blurted it out loud! ""2-hundred and twenty five dollars??""
I was thinking based on what we had..MAYBE $75...and that's stretching it. Again, there was no explanation...no ""oh you ordered a pre fix menu"". just a snitty little waiter with his snitty little turned up nose. blah.
I have been to many a sushi place and have never felt ripped off like this. they have a horrible attitude and serve ""just ok"" WILDLY overpriced food. how a place like th is stays in business...i'll never know. I should have figured something was up when he insisted on knowing if we had a reservation...when there was only 3 other people in the entire place!
DON""T GO THERE!!
Another ""reviewer"" says...""bring a fat wallet""? I say take your wallet to a place that appreciates your business and gives you something for your money.
I can understand stumbling backwards into this and feeling forced to pay the price...but go there again? NEVER!
And tell everyone what a collosal rip off it is? YES!! Anyone who will listen.
If I had wanted to treat my friend to the meal of his life...it certainly would not have been at that rat hole.
So, I give this restaurant a NEGATIVE 225...because that's all i was left with! Fortunately there were left overs from another meal at home, becasue thats what I ate when i got there!
As a former waiter, i have never tipped below 20%...never really had to...i've received decent service in my dining experiences. the ONLY good thing turns out to be that since this waiter left such a bad taste...although I felt compelled to tip him SOMETHING...i didn't feel that i needed to him anymore than 10%. Saved 20-bucks there...that was the highlight of the evening.
02/04/2010Provided by Citysearch -
This chef is nice if you follow his rules: Let the staff know what things you don't like and he'll send everything else. He sticks to sushi and sashimi.
One piece comes out at a time so that the rice is warm and the fish cool. You are supposed to eat the sushi within a minute of serving so that the temperature stays perfect. There are a number of types of fish I've never had anywhere else. All of them are the best I've tried. I've been there 20 times and the quality never varies.
If you're looking for a california roll, stay away. Same goes for crispy deep fried shrimp rolls. If you're truly into great sushi, this place is a Los Angeles treasure. You won't be dining more than 90 minutes. Probably 45 minutes, so find a bar nearby!
09/15/2009Provided by Citysearch -
I have been a regular customer of the restaurant for several years. They don't serve American sushi, fusion sushi, Chinese sushi, Korean sushi... The only thing they serve is Japanese sushi. If you pretend to be a sushi eater, that is not a place for you. We don't go there a lot, but we go there for special occasions. We also take our best friends from out of town there to show off LA. I would love to go there everyday, but I don't think I can afford it. Typically, dinner for two people will cost you over $300 without drinks. Well, of course you can say you are ""full,"" but we usually finish the entire round. The fish they serve are absolutely DIFFERENT and delicious! I know some people hate the place because of the rude chef. Let me tell you, he is not rude, just very blunt. He protects his art, which is his sushi. If you respect him, he also shows his respect to you. Come on, if you cannot handle it, nobody has invited you there. Just bring a fat wallet and an OPEN MIND, you will not regret. Don't be an ""American"" when you go to have sushi. If you cannot help, go to McD. Oh, this place is for enjoying the food (sushi), not a place for romance or nice environment. In this sense, it is not a typical garden variety restaurant. Actually, I like the place that is very selective, as you don't have to wait a long time for a seat (another plus for this restaurant).
I'm not a morning person but every time I come in on my way to work the baristas are always smiling and provide fast service. They make the Starbucks Coffee experience very personal and leave you with wanting to come back for more! When making special drink request, they are always on point.
02/02/2009Provided by Citysearch -
I'm giving this place only a 3 star not because the food wasn't good but because of the overall experience was a 3. I was doing my laundry at a laundromat 2 doors down and simply wanted a beer while waiting for my dry cycle. I walked into this place without knowing what kind of restaurant this was. The hostess warned me that there was no menu and I could not order anything. I thought it was interesting so I sat down and ordered a beer. The chef gave me a piece of sushi and since the posted sign said I should eat my sushi right away, I did. As soon as I ate my sushi, the chef gave me another one, and I felt like I had to eat that one right away. The next thing I knew I've had about 10 pieces of sushi, thinking the most I've spent was around $60. BUT NO!!!!!!! The bill came and my total was $130!!! WTH? right? I mean, I've had really good sushi before but c'mon! $130 for about 10 pieces of sushi? that's just not right.
01/12/2009Provided by Citysearch -
I've never written a food review but must express my opinion about my experience at a heralded ""high-end"" Culver City sushi bar.
Sushi Zo's assembly line omakase dining experience would make Toyota proud. Rarely looking up other than to yell ""Soy sauce"" or ""No soy sauce"" as each dish was pushed before us, the three sushi chefs worked like automatons cutting fish and preparing each plate. I find this atmosphere forced and pressurized: the ""eat and get out so the next suckers can eat and get out"" style of dining.
Although much of the fish was indeed excellent? it did not make up for the unpleasant environment. About halfway into our meal, when my date was getting full and wanted to slow things down, we simply could not get anyone's attention. Make no mistake, it's not that the place is big and loud; the staff simply ignored us. We tried and failed repeatedly. Sadly, we only managed to get their attention when we were presented with sweet shrimp?after having initially expressed our allergy to that very item. This second request to avoid sweet shrimp caused such turmoil and agitation behind the sushi bar that what followed was perhaps the most unpleasant dining experience of my life.
The chefs' disrespectful attitude, hostility, and talking about us behind the sushi bar almost provoked me to tell them off and leave without paying. We endured this treatment a few more minutes and asked for the check, which was preposterously expensive?perhaps further punishment to discourage us from returning. I paid the bill and graciously thanked each chef, who glanced our way but never acknowledged our comments. We felt like errant elementary school children leaving the principal's office. An awful experience.
Of course I could go on, but I'll conclude by adding that while the sushi was good, I've had better, and you know where. Even the ""Sushi N*z*"" offers a more genial dining experience. Sushi Zo? He's the Sushi A**h***. My recommendation? Avoid this place entirely.
11/26/2008Provided by Citysearch -
After reading a ton of excellent reviews and hearing from a famous rock star and his Kool-Aid drinking girlfriend that - ?You?ll never want to eat sushi anywhere else again? our only option was to see for ourselves.
Now, we weren?t going to make any quick judgments and let our initial reaction of walking into a restaurant that seemed as bright as the GAP sway our opinion about the freshness of the fish so we continued ? with an open mind of course. We truly believed we were in for the best sushi meal ever but this could not be further from the truth. The Amberjack lacked texture, juice and that special fresh out-of-the-water taste. It was more like Amber ? jack me the hell outa here! The ?home-made? soy sauce was too saucy ? plus every 2 minutes we were being yelled at by the server: ?NO SOY SAUCE? or ?SOY SAUCE?, way too much pressure. While the food was satisfactory, I did not have the same ""climax"" feeling that some of the regulars seem to have while inhaling the blue crab hand roll and insisting that be the absolute last taste on their palates! Lastly, NO WAKATAKE Sake????? WTF?!?!?! My advice: dim the lights, relax with the soy sauce instructions, give a girl some low sodium soy sauce and definitely, definitely go with a rock star who?s girlfriend is completely on the same page as him. Oh yeah, make sure you back up the Brinks truck, this place is gonna cost ya!
Oh, and - When did your heart and appetite go missing? See ya at Seki bitches!!!!!!
11/07/2008Provided by Citysearch -
My husband and I like to consider ourselves sushi connoisseurs, and to say that Sushi Zo has the best sushi in LA is no joke. I promise you, if you go for omakase, you will taste some of the freshest, most tender, impeccably cut and flavorful sushi of your life! Ever morsel will melt in your mouth! And trust me, we've been to some of what most would consider ""the best"" in LA, and it simply doesn't compare. While it is a little on the expensive side, the experience will prove to be well worth your time AND money. But you must know that it's not your average sushi restaurant, where California rolls are a staple, so don't even bother if you're looking for that kind of typical American-style sushi. Sushi Zo serves up very traditional sushi, so you definitely have to be adventurous and respect the art and the culture behind it, because this is what you'll get there! And while some go as far as saying the chef is rude, I disagree completely. I believe these people don't understand the way sushi is done in Japan, where it's all about the freshness of the seafood and respecting the chef for his craft, not having the chef go out of his way to please greedy and impatient customers, who think that shouting out multiple orders for cut rolls and sushi all at once should command respect for THEM. It's absolutely absurd, and only reaffirms the stereotype of Americans as being arrogant, entitled a$$holes. Besides, there are rules provided for eating omakase at the bar, so if you can't handle it, beat it!
09/30/2008Provided by Citysearch -
Sushi is good and expensive! I am told Omikasa is now the only option. You eat what he wants to serve you. That can be fun. The owner is always rude! He makes it look as though Nozawa is running a charm school. I am sorry, but when you spend $250 for lunch, I do not think a simple ""good bye"" or ""thank you"" is out of order. I have been to Sushi Zo about 10 times. Today was my last. This type of behavior should not be condoned or supported. I have learned my lesson. Having sushi is not just about the food, it is also about the experience.
05/24/2008Provided by Citysearch -
So I lived in Japan for 14 years and I definitely consider myself a die hard sushi snob and this is my favorite restaurant in town hands down! I am so impressed with the quality of each piece of sushi plus the only thing TO order in a great SUSHI restaurant is OMAKASE and Zo knows how to do it right. The literal translation of omakase is ""entrust"" or ""protect"" and with each and every bite of amazing sushi that melts in my mouth, I feel like the chefs are delivering an amazing work of art! This is not the place for the first timers or someone who might like tuna. Well done, I finally feel like I can bring Japan to me while living here in LA.
03/03/2008Provided by Citysearch -
I?m glad I tried it, but I probably won?t go again cuz Once is enough. We had 2x $20 glasses sake and 1 bottle sake, 2 miso soups, 2 pieces each clam on a half shell, abalone, yellowtail amberjack sashimi, tuna, spanish mackerel, giant clam, toro, sweet shrimp, scallops, uni & salmon roe, egg, baby tuna, monkfish liver, albacore, halibut, salmon, red snapper, a hand roll (I forgot what kind of fish). Actually, I?m not totally sure about the last few pieces since I was already a little buzzed. they were all simple sushi pieces, fresh fish, perfect cut size of fish, perfect amount of rice, perfect amount of sauce, however they served it and however they said to eat it made the taste and experience it?s best possible. Even though they were simple sushi pieces, each piece was still amazing. it could be a little more romantic setting but the room was pretty bright. For 2?.$311 pre tip
02/14/2008Provided by Citysearch -
The people that have given Sushi Zo bad ratings are idiots. You obviously didn't read the card on each table explaining the proper way to eat sushi and sushi etiquette. It states that sushi should be eaten right away to ensure the best flavor and freshness of the fish. If it sits out too long the fish oils will dry out and the fish will not taste as good as it should. That is why they serve one piece at a time. It is for your eating pleasure. So plan on being there for a while, it is not a fast food place by any measure. Read the card and learn something new.
The Japanese culture is very big on respect. It is a way with their culture. If you are disrespectful, they will be disrespectful. However, if you are respectful and open to the ways of their culture, the sushi chef is actually very nice and even jokes with you. Order Omakase and you will not be displeased. When you order you can tell the chef certain things that you don't like or are allergic to and he will not serve it to you. He will however serve you fantastic sushi with more variety and sauces then you would find off the a la cart menu. Oh, and the reason they tell you no sauce or soy sauce OK is because a lot of the sushi served already has sauce on it. It doesn't need anymore. Or the soy sauce will not match the flavor of the sauce that is already on it. Again it's for your eating pleasure.
So, if you are open minded and capable of being respectful, please go to Sushi Zo. Expect to be there for a while and to pay a lot of money, but also expect to have some of the best sushi you have had in town.
There are only two negative things I can say about Sushi Zo.
1. It has ruined almost every other sushi restaurant for me. It has really set the bar high.
2. It is too pricey to go there every day.
Easily the most rude, snobby and obnoxious place in the city. They serve ONE small, boring, tasteless piece of fish at a time, SLOWLY (i'm talking 30 minutes between each piece...is THAT how they do it in ""Japan???""), it's NOT that good and then when they serve it to you, they TELL you how you should eat it. I ordered a piece of yellowtail, chewy, grisly, and NOT soft (think: OPPOSITE of matsuhisa), and when I got served my tiny portion of Hamachi, the waitress actually looked me in the eye and said ""do NOT put soy sauce on that."" Um....excuse me? I paid YOU to wait 30 minutes to bring me 1 piece of fish, and you want to order me how I should consume it??? On top of that, actually tried to give the place ONE more shot a few weeks later, walked in on an EMPTY wednesday night at 7pm (I am literally, not exagerrating, there were TWO ppl in the ENTIRE place.) and the ""head chef rude master sushi san"" told me and my wife if we didn't EACH order 10 orders of food, we would not be seated. First off, I understand a minimum on a Fri or Sat night, MAYBE. On a Wed night, when your restaurant is EMPTY...give me a break! I actually said to the chef, ""Excuse me? That's a little excessive don't you think? 10 plates per person??"" He said ""HEY! I am trying to run a business!!"" I gestured to the empty restaurant, smiled and said ""well, you're sure doing a great job of that.""
These people have egos that are BEYOND inflated -- they are no top-notch restaurant in this city, their service is GOD AWFUL and their food is ABSOLUTELY MEDIOCRE...Go to Matsuhisa or Koi if you want a FINE japanese dining experience. BOO THIS RESTAURANT. DO NOT GIVE THEM YOUR BUSINESS!!!!!!!!!!!!
StupidMonkey must be staff at Sushi Zo. Respectful and accommodating? My wife is a vegetarian and they wouldn't even make her a cucumber roll! Their culture is about respect? Screaming at guests to order 10 pieces min on an empty WED. night or get out is not what I call respect. This place is awful.
the most snobby and obnoxious place in the city. these people have egos that are inflated based on zero substance. this restaurant is no matsuhisa or koi, they do not have the clout to be treating customers with such disrespect. they look down upon people and critique the way you eat their food. they do not allow people to enjoy eating sushi in the way they want to eat it, they tell you what to eat, how much to spend and it's not worth it.
i would NEVER recommend this place in a million years. not when there are actual quality sushi restaurants nearby with staff and management who actually care about customers.