Omakase at Mori

How do I convince myself to drop multiple Benjamins at Mori? I had find myself an excuse. At last, I found the perfect one since tonight marked the first time I took my sister-in-law to dinner. What better way is there to introduce her to good sushi than hitting up Mori? :sunglasses:

Upon arrival, I felt quite special since Maru-san actually recognized me even though it had been a while since I last visited. On this night, Mori was surprisingly busy and the restaurant almost filled up entirely at one point.

Now moving on to the food. The star of the show, the shari, was excellent as usual with great chew and flavor. Temperature was consistent throughout the night and plenty of air was packed into each nigiri without them ever falling apart. Also, not one grain of rice was dropped tonight despite utilizing our less than perfect chopstick skills to pick up each nigiri.

On the other hand, I’m equally impressed by the breadth of neta selection which demonstrated a variety of textures and preparation methods. I’m quite biased when it comes to Mori since this is my reference point which explains why I struggled to find fault or highlight any one particular nigiri tonight. They were all fantastic. However, if you hold a gun to my head, I’ll concede that the Alaskan Sockeye Salmon, Baby Kohada, and Nodoguro were the superstars of the show.

Did it exceed the height of Shin Sushi from 3 nights ago? A resounding YES with the exception of the desserts which were mediocre, but it came with a 2X the cost though admittedly, I had more exotic fish and the seasonal platter at Mori.

Highly recommended!

Maybe it’s time to redo the sign?

Brought this in tonight: Ginga Shizuku Divine Droplets | Junmai Daiginjo

Creamy Tofu with dashi, wasabi, ikura
I prefer the regular tofu that they usually serve. The texture of this tofu’s a little too thick so it wasn’t creamy like it’s intended to.

Of course we requested to sit in front of Maru-san, the man, the myth, the legend-ish

Seasonal Platter from left to right-ish:
1) Santa Barbara spot prawn with uni sauce - YUMM
2) Japanese silver shrimp tempura
3) Umaki/omelet stuffed with unagi
4) Grilled okra
5) Yuzu marinated potato
6) Fig with sesame - YUM
7) Octopus seaweed salad
8) Smoked mirugai/bluefin tuna/takuan - YUMMM
9) Tomato atop tomato marshmallow

1) Tai Kobujime / Marinated Snapper

2) Hotate / Hokkaido Scallop

3) Nama Tako / Raw Octopus

4) Isaki / Grunt Fish

5) Aji / Horse Mackerel

6) Alaskan King Salmon

7) Alaskan Sockeye Salmon

8) Bincho Maguro / Grilled Albacore

9) IshiKarei / Stone Flounder

10) Shimaaji / Jack Mackerel

11) Iwashi / Sardine

12) Zuke / Marinated Bluefin Tuna

13) Bluefin Chutoro

14) Saba / Japanese Mackerel

15) Bluefin O-Toro

16) Kohada / Gizzard Shad

17) Shinko / Baby Kohada
It’s essentially a cleaner tasting Gizzard Shad since baby kohada isn’t fatty. I love it.

18) Kamasu / Baby Baracuda

19) Iwashi / Marinated Sardine

20) Nodoguro / Blackthroat Seaperch
Rich, fatty, smokey, and meaty. Fantastic.

21) Uni #1 / Santa Barbara Sea Urchin
22) Uni #2 / Hokkaido Sea Urchin
As usual, the SB uni is creamier but Hokkaido uni is sweeter.

Roasted green tea

Strawberry marshmallow

Some kind of green bean dessert with mochi

Mori Sushi
11500 W Pico Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90064


I shamefully admit that I’ve only been to Mori twice (since I don’t live in LA). Upon my return a year + later after the first visit, Maru san remembered me… Actually a lot of good chefs/shokunin remember finer details, such as where you sat and maybe even your preferences (or can guess exactly what you want to add on without saying it, but that’s next level). Of course there are aspects of each customer that may leave deeper impressions with the chef than others, e.g. interactions or mannerisms.

I’m now more used to the Sushi Sho styles of sushi, particularly a well balanced sake lees/red vinegared seasoned sushi rice recipe stronger in salt and sour profiles, but whenever in LA Mori Sushi’s rice is so far for komesu / rice vinegar seasoned sushi rice, pretty tops in my book and balances very well overall with any of the seafood on top. The additional polishing of the rice grains (which was first done by the previous owner Morihiro Onodera [now at Shiki] for rice sourcing) does make a finer textural and taste difference, part of the reason why this place is not for beginners, and a bit of a nod to one of his higher end sake offerings by Tatsuriki (Hyogo prefecture) by the brewery Honda Shoten.

Ahh Ginga Shizuku Junmai Daiginjo, a solid choice for wine drinkers (I was introduced to this 3+ years back) and also sometimes served by Saison (likely due to the Vine Connections sourcing, part of their sake portfolio). Speaking of Saison, Josh and Mark have been to Mori Sushi as well.

The seasonal platter is always a delight to have, and it’s done at such a high level that is typical of high end kappo kaiseki in Japan…and a favorite to enjoy sake with (or for some, a dry champagne, and guessing certain white burgundies too).

Great photos as always! I miss coming to Mori.

The green bean dessert reminds me of some mung bean dessert items from Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Vietnam. Must be great to have during the summer.


what was that bill? i need to treat the lady to some raw fish soon… she has been very patient.

@Nemroz $203/person pre-corkage, tax, and tip.

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I guess I need to pay Maru-san another visit soon!

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i really need to go back. I’ve been going mostly to Shunji nowadays since his cooked dishes are always phenomenal and it’s my wife’s favorite restaurant. (plus I need to work on getting on the FOTC list)
i agree, Maru-san’s rice is wonderful.

It’s a completely different blend that he’s using so I’m super intrigued.

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