Katsu Sushi: Your Moment of Zen
Before there was Matsuhisa, before there was Nozawa, there was Katsu Michite, the acknowledged sushi master of Los Angeles, whose former art-filled Los Feliz sushi bar was one of the defining restaurants of the 1980s, almost as noticeable for the plates Michite designed as for its cuisine. (Many of the best sushi chefs in Los Angeles were trained by Michite.) His Tama Sushi has long been a connoisseur’s choice in the sushi district of Studio City. And now comes Katsu Sushi, a stunningly minimal sushi bar in Beverly Hills, a bare box whose light fixtures resemble trout eyes, where the fish is all hidden behind a blond-wood counter and where the omakase sushi is among the very best in town. The house style is spare and precise, luxuriously soft fish fitted over a small bullet of rice, fastidiously touched with fresh wasabi, and put down, already seasoned, on individual plates — Michite and his chefs don’t even bother placing soy sauce dishes in front of their customers. The offerings are not particularly exotic or expensive — you will have to go elsewhere for garnishes of beluga caviar, gold leaf or blowtorched toro — but Michite always has been a master at choosing fish, and the wild tai, the aji, the sardines and other seasonal fish are superb. Katsu is more expensive than Tama — it would have to be, given the address — but compared to Beverly Hills neighbors like Urasawa and Sushi Sushi, it almost seems bargain-priced. 260 N. Beverly Dr., Beverly Hills, (310) 858-0535.
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