When discussing Urasawa, it's probably best to address the elephant in the room first. This is unequivocally the most expensive restaurant in the city (too high for alt-weekly expense budgets). It's the kind of commodity, along with courtside Lakers tickets, that most people spend years squirreling away toward. The real question — is it worth it? Chef Hiro Urasawa trained under Masa Takayama, a man who is unanimously agreed upon to be the best sushi chef in the country (Takayama left Los Angeles a few years ago to open Masa in New York, where dinners often command even more astronomical prices.) Urasawa speaks the delicate language of kaiseki with a level of fluidity most chefs can only dream of, teasing out the nuances of Japan's most prized delicacies: Kobe-beef sashimi, Kagoshima beef shabu-shabu and, if the season is right, sweet filaments of hairy crab imbued with layers of creamy shirako. The bill might become more bearable if you think of it as a first-class Japanese vacation that lasts only a few hours — imagine the money you saved on airfare. 218 N. Rodeo Drive, Beverly Hills. (310) 247-8939 (no website).
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