Chaya DTLA Welcomes New Chef Joji Inoue

Chef Joji Inoue

Chef Joji Inoue

 

Chaya in Downtown Los Angeles welcomes new Executive Chef Joji Inoue and he has introduced a new menu. The sushi bar has been replaced with a kaisen seafood.

new kaisen seafood bar

new kaisen seafood bar

 

Chef Joji and Chaya decided to change the sushi bar over to a kaisen seafood bar to feature whole fish and other seafood from Japan’s famous seafood markets including Tsukiji Market. Each week Chaya will receive a new shipment of fish to feature. When I attended a preview party, everyone was dazzled by the Cornet fish which has a very distinctive elongated mouth.

carving fish tableside

carving fish tableside

One of the new dishes is a fish you pick out and it gets served at your table. You may choose either grilled, deep fried, salt-baked or acqua pazza which is an Italian preparation.

 

fish tableside

fish tableside

 

We tried that and I really enjoyed the flavors that had garlic, onions and even bits of clam.

salad

salad

 

I’m happy to see the salads are still brilliant. I always love the seaweed salad. Chaya has also brought back its popular summer beer garden. You can get the skewers out on the patio.

battera sushi

battera sushi

 

Although not a sushi guy, Chef Joji has introduced battera or box sushi. The Osaka-style sushi is perfect for those who love sushi rolls that are also very fun. I was really into the salmon with a bit of chili oil.

salmon sushi

salmon sushi

 

The battera sushi would be a great lunch if you can’t wait for dinner to enjoy the full kaisen experience. I’m eyeing those luscious seafood towers.

trumpet fish sashimi

Cornet fish sashimi

 

Chef Joji demonstrated slicing fish for sashimi and within a few minutes, the whole Cornet fish turned into a beautiful plate of sashimi complete with pickled vegetables and edible flowers.

close up on the sashimi

close up on the bonnet mouth sashimi

 

Chef Joji thought the Cornet fish tasted best as sashimi. It had a mild flavor that reminded me a bit of snapper.

shrimp

shrimp

 

The plentiful oysters, shrimp cocktail and lobster claws by the dozens that really got the crowd going.

lobster

lobster claws!

 

I hear there might be foie gras buns… I just might to return sooner than later!

 

Summer Beer Garden until September 4.

Chaya Downtown

525 S. Flower Street, Los Angeles, CA 90071 — 213-236-9577

© The Minty 2015

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