3785 Wilshire Blvd,
Los Angeles, CA 90010
February and March, 2012
Shabu Ya is not a restaurant you will ever pass by in K-town, unless you live there or happen to go there for a haircut. It’s located in the same building as Solair Apartments and right next to Hair Day salon. It’s also on the second floor. Basically, you have to know that it exists or else you probably won’t ever visit the restaurant.
I’ve tried shabu shabu at a few places in LA: Shabu Shabu House, Kagaya and Shabuyo in Little Tokyo and Yojie in downtown. Shabu Ya probably has the best beef out of all these places. When I went there for the first time, a lady (either the store manager or the owner) was shocked. “How did you find this place?” she asked. I told her that it was through Yelp and that I’ve been to the salon next door for a few haircuts before. The lady was very nice and attentive.
She made sure to hide in the kitchen when my friend and I were eating to give us some privacy–after all, the restaurant was empty except for the two of us. She came back at the right time to help us refill our sauces and water. After we were done eating, she proudly told us that they serve Grade A Prime Beef, which, as I experienced myself, literally melts in your mouth. One thing I also noticed about the restaurant, since I was comparing it to Shabu Shabu House for the most part, is that it’s very clean. The lady told us that that’s another area where she is really proud of. She tells the workers to make sure the restaurant is very clean. “I tell them to scrub the toilets every day, even when no one used them.”
We started off with the raw oysters. Normally, I have them with lemon and cocktail sauce but Shabu Ya serves them with their own ponzu sauce with spring onions. It was different from the sweet cocktail sauce that I normally eat my oysters with but it was a good “different.”
The beef came shortly after we finished our oysters. From what I remember, the shabu shabu set was around $15. At $15 for a lunch in a nice and clean environment with “meltable” beef and validated, free parking, it’s a good deal.
My second experience in Shabu Ya was just as good except they ran out of oysters by the time I got there for dinner.
With two good experiences down the belt, I’d revisit this place.
Joey Wong ♥