/ The Los Angeles Guide
Los Angeles — By Joannaline C. Young on May 6, 2010 at 9:18 pm
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Yamashiro Restaurant Review

Set atop a Hollywood mountain, many come to the popular Japanese restaurant Yamashiro as much for its great view of Los Angeles as for their food.  The restaurant serves a wide array of traditional Japanese food and beverages, with a presentation, accompanied by excellent service, that exudes a refined and classy dining experience.

Familiar menu items include your choice of sushi such as unagi (eel), uni (urchin), or tamago (egg omelet) served to your preference, but their¬† specialty is unique Asian Fusion entrees like American Wagyu steak with Himalayan salt plate and Korean-style braised beef short ribs.¬† Yamashiro’s features Japanese beverages from teas to hot and chilled sake that can be flavored with the Asian fruits lychee and Fuji apple, along with a a full bar, and a nice selection of beer and wine.

View in front of Yamashiro

The restaurant was given it’s Japanese name, which means “Mountain Palace”, because it was designed to be a replica of a palace in the “Yamashiro” mountains of Japan. It was built about 88 years ago as a private estate and garden to hold Asian treasures, later becoming a celebrity hangout during the Golden Age of Hollywood. The building has also gone through vandalism and theft during the low times of the Depression and anti-Japanese sentiments during WWII, and at one time was turned into a 15 unit apartment.¬† Finally it was remodeled into the restaurant we see today.

Regardless of the time of day, restaurant goers get a view of the city’s seemingly infinite landscape.  Small buildings, tiny moving cars, and tree-lined streets makeup much of this great city, and in the distance, you can see popular Los Angeles landmarks like Capitol Records, El Capitan Theatre, and the Griffith Observatory. You can also see the newly saved Hollywood sign!

Yamashiro's Japanese Garden

The Yamashiro building itself is beautiful, with an elegant single story layout.  Customers can choose to dine at the center of the restaurant around a calming Japanese Garden or in the front of the restaurant overlooking the Los Angeles view and outdoor garden.  In the garden are  small waterfalls, creating soft, soothing sounds for relaxed dining.  Behind this garden is a Japanese lounging area  with comfortable chairs and artwork.

Though many guests first come to the restaurant for a great view of Hollywood, the food is what keeps them coming back!

Yamamshiro features colorful ‚ÄúMakizushi Rolls‚ÄĚ (or rolled sushi), made in their kitchen. Try their Comfort Me, Amor√©, which looks like an ordinary salmon roll.¬† This treat features a top of prosciutto with a filling of¬† soy paper, goat cheese, basil, arugula, and sweet melon.¬† Their savory Asian fusion entrees are well-proportioned servings, graciously presented on simple white plates.¬† The BBQ Baby Back Ribs, served with an Asian five-spice corn bread, marries the cuisine of the US South with Asia to mouthwatering perfection.¬† The Pan-Roasted Chicken Breast was moist, topped with a teriyaki sauce, and served on top of brown fried rice with Chinese long beans on the side.

During the day the restaurant is delicately lit by the sun and by nightfall red lights surround the interior, creating an ambiance this an ideal spot for both special occasions and upscale casual dining.

Price: Entrees range from $19 to $69. Dinner reservations can be made online.

Attire: Business Casual

Hours:  Monday-Thursday, Sunday 5:30pm-10pm; Friday-Saturday 5:30pm-11pm

Location: 1999 N. Sycamore Avenue, Hollywood (map)

Photo courtesy of Luna, Ink.

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    Yamashiro Restaurant
    1999 N Sycamore Ave, Los Angeles, , United States
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