Author Archives: Gary Idama

Gary Idama

About Gary Idama

A gourmet since the mid 1970s, Gary Idama has an extensive knowledge of a variety of cuisines, but is partial to Japanese food. When Gary reviews restaurants, he looks for good food and drink, good bang for the bucks, a clean eatery and kitchen, plus knowledgeable and enthusiastic service. He is a member of Yelp's Elite and spends his time at restaurant and cultural events, hanging out with friends, and attending Sake/Wine tastings. His last meal on earth would be Omakase with premium Sake at Mako Sushi in Little Tokyo and maybe a little salted, preserved Fugu ovary with a Napa Pinot Noir.

Kinjiro Izakaya in Little Tokyo

Kinjiro is carrying the torch passed on by BOS, which was a beef centric restaurant in the same space. The layout is about the same, but the open kitchen is now surrounded by clear plexiglass. Jun is still at the … Continue reading

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Fig & Olive Introduces its New Fall Menu

Walking around the pure whitewashed building housing Fig & Olive, I was reminded of the thick, white walled, red tiled roofed villages all along the shores of the cobalt blue Mediterranean Sea. Upon entering, the interior walls, table cloths and napery, and the ceramic service … Continue reading

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Hirose Sushi in Torrance

Hirose is a hidden sleeper of a tiny sushi restaurant sandwiched between a Jersey Mike’s & Ko-ryu- Ra-men.  It’s mostly a Japanese speaking clientele, especially during the lunch hour, but that shouldn’t discourage non-Japanese speakers from enjoying the fresh, light, … Continue reading

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Inaba: Japanese Oysters in Torrance

Inaba is noted for its handmade Soba which is difficult to make.  Buckwheat has very little gluten so that it doesn’t “stick” together easily.  Therefore, in order to facilate the making of Soba, about 20% is wheat flour to create … Continue reading

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LA Rose Café: Pilipino on the Eastside

I remember coming to the LA Rose Café during the first wave of Nouvelle California Cuisine which started sometime in the mid 1970’s in Los Angeles and incorporated mainly French cooking technique with Japanese aesthetics.  Around 1982, we stepped into … Continue reading

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Jinya Ramen in Studio City

The gyoza (ghee yoh zah) at Jinya is, for me, the best that I have had so far in Los Angeles. The Kiyoken Gyo-za Ekimae Bento  at Yokohama Train Station may be better although tasting quite different from Jinya’s, but may … Continue reading

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An Early Peek at Redline Restaurant and Video Bar

Thursday, August 14th, was the soft opening of Redline, the second Gay bar in DTLA. Actually it was more of an art “happening” by Graffitti artist, Aloy, who was spray painting a huge wall space to be the future bar … Continue reading

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Craft Cocktail Class at Neapolis in Pasadena

I attended a Craft Cocktail Class to Benefit Aids Service Center of Pasadena held on July 31st at Neapolis. There was a light tasting menu with cocktail pairings, after which we were given hands on lessons in cocktail mixing. Neapolis … Continue reading

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Nozomi in Torrance

Nozomi means hope in Japanese. Is it hope by the restaurant to do well in serving its customers or hope by the customers to have a good meal? I am always all for the latter. The interior is a nondescript, pleasant … Continue reading

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Outfest: Pat Rocco and George Takei

“Outfest is one of the leading nonprofit organizations dedicated to growing, preserving and showcasing lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender filmmaking. Beyond its well-known annual festival (its namesake), it screens movies year-round (as part of a regular series), and hosts special … Continue reading

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