Tastes of Sawtelle

Original photo by Monstruo Estudio via Unsplash

Original photo by Monstruo Estudio via Unsplash

Part of the L.A. by district series.

Sawtelle is my personal favorite food spot in Los Angeles. Some call it “Little Osaka”, but Sawtelle is a blend of Japanese, Korean, Taiwanese, Chinese and Vietnamese restaurants. It’s an area you go to eat and eat well.

This district’s situated on the main street it’s named after. Sawtelle Boulevard between Santa Monica Boulevard and Olympic Boulevard is where you’ll find some of the best restaurants on the Westside. The area is small but mighty.

Parking may be tricky during peak times, but there are two lots where you can valet for free if you’re eating at the corresponding restaurants. Both are on Mississippi Avenue. Otherwise find a meter closer to Santa Monica and walk. Sometimes there is available parking in the surrounding neighborhood. Always check the street signs! You know this if you know L.A.

Small Shared Selection

Coffee Tomo

This is my favorite coffee shop in Los Angeles. Their Iced Tomo Latte is a miracle. It’s made with condensed milk, so it’s a little sweet, but not kicking you in the face. I couldn’t recommend it more. They also have tasty hot tea if you’re low-key.

Seoul House of Tofu

Most people hear “tofu” and walk away, but I promise it’s amazing. What is our relationship if there is no trust? Though this isn’t Korea town, you can rely on this restaurant. Get the Bulgogi Combo or the Spicy Bulgogi Combo.

ROC Kitchen

If you love Din Tai Fung but don’t have time to go to Arcadia, try the soup dumplings here. For those of you who missed the memo, I’m talking about a dumpling with hot soup inside- typically a broth with pork. Delicious.

Blockheads Shavery

What they serve is called “snow cream” by the shop, but it’s hard to gather what that means without having tried it before. So you’ve had shaved ice? What about shaved ice cream? It’s like a big block of ice cream they shave to give it the fluffiness of shaved ice with the creaminess of ice cream.

Seoul Sausage Co.

Run by three brothers, Seoul Sausage put a spin on Korean BBQ by making it street food. Brought to the masses with an award winning food truck, the restaurant location sits on Mississippi Avenue and Sawtelle.

Tsujita LA Artisan Noodle/Tsujita Annex

This restaurant always has a line out the door. Apparently, they are known for a ramen dish, which is only served at lunchtime. I haven’t been yet, but I really want to go. Please get there first and tell me what I’m missing!

Max Karaoke Studio

Belt out your favorite jams with your friends in one of their private karaoke rooms. For a small fee you can BYOB, since they don’t serve alcohol. 

Now I’m hungry. And I’ve only listed a fraction of the restaurants, since I haven’t tried them all. Please share with me your recommendations in the area! I need to explore more. 

Until next time…


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