The best Shabu !!! I been eating here for the last 20 years. I see people that come in again and again. Most of local people know this place. Never think I need to write a review for it. You must drink the ice coffee if you do go there. One of the best ice coffee.
I know some people doesn’t know how this place work and think the business owner it rude. I been eating there so often, the owner it’s really nice. He had his way managing the place. Why always so packed? There is reason on it. So no need to explain more.
Yesss….the last time I was in the area we didn’t have a chance to eat here, so needless to say, I was excited that this time we were going to get a chance. They opened at 5pm, but we’ll before that, there was a clip board left out for you to place in your name and number in your party. We got lucky and was the first few. This restaurant is located in a cute area with a ton of other stores to see, so we walked around while we waited for them to open. When we came back we got seated and started eating right away. The meat was great! I definitely recommend ordering the large size. You won’t regret it…haha.
It’s super quiet in the restaurant and not that many seating areas. They even have a sign asking costumers to put away their cell phones. 🙂 There was definitely no need for the phone anyways because everyone was busy eating.
Service was quick and efficient.
you don’t dip meat into sauce as it is, you need to mix with other ingredients on the table. I would suggest you to ask restaurant staff for their suggestion. They helped me to mix the ingredients with sauce, and it tasted super good.
Shabu Shabu House is a no-nonsense, authentic Japanese hotpot restaurant that excels at what it does. This tiny shop in the Japanese Village Plaza is always busy, and for good reason.
THINGS TO NOTE:
1) They only serve shabu shabu at dinner. At lunch, they offer the same high-quality meat but in cooked, bento form.
2) Cash only.
3) They close between lunch and dinner and end the day at 9PM instead of 9:30.
4) They’re very strict about timing, so make sure you’re inside and put your name down before 9. They will not take more names after that. On my last visit, a group came in past 9 and made a big deal when they couldn’t be seated. One of them took a video of the sign while loudly making comments. It’s disappointing, sure, but they have a right to close when they want.
5) On that note, phones! They ask that you don’t use them, and they will call you out for it. You can sneak a quick picture if you really want, but I’d avoid it and just enjoy the experience.
I point all this out because I’ve noticed a lot of reviews complaining about the policies. Yes they’re strict. However, it’s completely within their right. The owner has run the place for 24+ years and it’s only respectful to follow his rules if you choose to eat here.
Onto the good stuff! If you’re indecisive like me and get overwhelmed by options, you’ll love their menu. It has one thing: beef shabu shabu. Just choose your portion size. Regular = 10 slices for $22, large = 15 slices for $24. You can request lean or fatty meat if you have a preference. What’s amazing is they slice the meat right in front of you and serve it immediately. In addition to rice, vegetables, tofu, udon, and glass noodles, you get bowls of ponzu and goma (sesame) sauce. The goma is pretty mild, but I LOVE their housemade ponzu. Sauces and rice are refillable, and you can customize them with the tableside daikon, garlic, sesame oil, soy sauce, chili powder, and green onion.
A NOTE ON BROTH:
A number of negative reviews lament that it’s plain water, but that’s what shabu shabu is meant to be. A little dashi or kombu sometimes and that’s it. It’s not sweet like sukiyaki or intensely flavored like Chinese hotpot. It does take some getting used to, and I love my flavored broths at Jazz Cat and Little Sheep. I was surprised my first time. But the broth here lets the meat stand out. They use USDA Choice Black Angus ribeye and you can taste the quality. It’s flavorful even without sauce, and that’s coming from someone who loves the sauce bar at Little Sheep. You’re always free to add condiments to your broth (I add a little soy sauce and green onion to mine), but just know it isn’t meant to shine.
This is the only place where I’m willing to shell out ~$30 for hotpot. I suggest going after 8 on a weeknight to avoid waiting. They validate parking at the Japanese Village Plaza garage. Respect the rules, don’t expect flavored broth, and you’ll enjoy a high-quality, no-frills meal.
Located in the heart of Little Tokyo, Shabu Shabu House is one the oldest restaurants in this plaza. Shabu Shabu House known for their Traditional Japanese Shabu. It’s a small restaurant and in the middle you can see a butcher slicing the meat. The meat is high quality and sliced supper thin. The menu is very limited. The broth is just hot water and the additional flavor comes from their house made ponzu sauce and peanut sauce. Chopped green onion, garlic, radish, chili oil and etc. are available for additional flavoring.
As a rule, when you come in, you sign in and write down if you want a small or large (meat entree size). Plenty of seating inside and outside if there’s a wait. There’s a no cell phone rule. The owner will call you out for being on your phone lol. Very fast pace with friendly service. You’re in and out. This place is CASH ONLY. They will also validate parking ticket.
My Go-To when I’m in LA. And as the weather starts to get cooler, I’ve been craving this more and more. It’s a hidden gem in K-Town and conveniently close to the Metro (don’t forget your TAP card). Exit the Little Tokyo / Arts District Station and cross the street. Once you find the wishing tree, you’ve reached your destination.
Two things: Cash Only and Get Here Early!
You’ll need to put your name on the list. So do yourself a favor and be close-by when they call names, if you’re not around they will not save your spot. Believe me when I say this restaurant has limited seating (only 18-20 seats or so), don’t come with a group.
The Menu: Medium or Large.
Veggies, Udon, Tofu, Sauces and Rice.
The meat is perfectly tender and the veggies are so fresh. Very generous with sides. But eat fast because there is no time to linger here. There’s a 30 minute time limit. So sit down, eat and be on your way…and don’t let the door hit you on the way out. Lol.