It started with my friend Danny – who invited my boyfriend and I, who in turn invited another couple, and before we knew it, Oki Doki was a must have, Sunday night tradition for all our friends. I've become specialty roll sushi obsessed – and I happily blame it on the near flawlessness of Oki Doki Sushi. My fish eating skills were visibly lacking two years ago, when I couldn't imagine eating anything from the sea, with the mere exception of shrimp. Since then, I've added lobster, crab, salmon & tuna to my list, all as a result of the amazing chefs at Oki Doki. I've yet to leave this place completely satisfied and I guess that's what keeps me coming back time and time again.
Let's break it down:
Location / Atmosphere: Yes, it may look like a whole in the wall – a tiny (yet very clean) restaurant, crammed in the corner of a tiny strip mall, but, as we've all witnessed, looks can be deceiving. Inadequate parking can be a pain, but I can deal. The quaint place only seats about 35, and sure the décor isn't up to perfection, though appealing in its own right – BUT the food is, so no biggie.
Menu: The menu offers an assortment of items you would expect from a typical sushi place. Although I haven't experimented with it all, I haven't had a single thing I didn't enjoy. Menu items includes tasty apps (like pot stickers, tempura and the classic miso soup), teriyaki bowls, Bento Combos, Noodle Soups, Sushi a la carte, dozens of fun sushi rolls and even tempura ice cream!
Service: The chefs and wait staff at Oki Doki are genuinely friendly, always helpful in suggesting new items. Since the place is small, you don't have to wait long for your food (although getting a table on a busy night can take a bit). Plus, you can enjoy complimentary edamame and pickled cucumbers in the meantime. If you come on a busy night, you will need to be a little patient, as the place does seems to be a little understaffed.
Price: In terms of Sushi, prices here are unbeatable for LA– $3 gets you 2 pieces of most sushi. Rolls start at around $4, for the basic California & Veggie rolls, average at about $9 for most of the local faves and top off around $13 for fish loaded daily specials. The place also offers different combo deals for beyond reasonable prices.
Quality/Taste: Delicious, fresh fish + creative, amazing tasting rolls + yummy sauces (allowing you to avoid tons of the sodium in soy sauce), served in HUGE portions, carefully & beautifully prepared to perfection = sushi joint heaven
The Extras: They often bring around complimentary baked albacore tuna as an app, which is totally irresistible. I cross my fingers each time that they'll bring it out. You'll also enjoy the less than subtle, occasional early 90's rap and rocky edged club music sometimes pumping through the sound system.
Here are some of the staple rolls for our Sunday tradition*:
Alaska Roll ( in: Spicy Crab, Avocado, Cucumber / out: Salmon Tempura)
In & Out Roll ( in: Spicy Tuna, Avocado, Cucumber/ out: Seared Tuna)
Snow Cone Roll ( in: Crabmeat, Avocado / out: Baked Albacore, Lobster)
Dynamite Roll ( in: Spicy Tuna, Avocado / out: Baked Seafood)
TNT Roll ( in: Crab, Avocado, Cucumber / out: Shrimp Tempura, Smelt Eggs) – minus the eggs for me
*Keep in mind that all of these rolls come drizzled in amazing secret sauces that I am desperate to find the recipes for....
I can't get enough of this place. And chances are, by the time I finish this review, I'll have made plans to head there tonight. Bring you friends. Bring your family. If you're local to LA or just visiting the Southbay, this is one place that won't disappoint!
Pictures to come :)
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