Tuesday, March 01, 2011

Sakae Sushi - Gardena

I'm bundled up on a cold winter's morning (55 degrees here) waiting for a sushi store to open. The things I won't do for O.G. I am her slave I mean - granddaughter, after all.

See, O.G. has friends coming over and she MUST HAVE FRESH SUSHI. Not just any sushi - sushi from Sakae in Gardena. This place is old skool. This is where alllll the 90 year olds buy their sushi, yo. How do I know? I'm second in line cause some old lady beat me here early in the morning. Man, you'd think I could outrun a cane...
Even when she lived in Pasadena, O.G. would make the long haul out to Gardena just to get this sushi. It's what local Japanese American families have been eating for years. This is NOT you-fancy-huh sushi. No roe, no dynamite rolls, nope - this is very traditional. There are only 6 menu items, all about 90 cents, there's not even any raw fish. Just things like sweet egg, some saba, nothing fancy.

When Eater LA did a huge feature on them in December, I was saddened by the comments saying that the place was 'dirty' and 'old', those people didn't get it. This is tradition. I remember going here when I was a child, so for the older generation - it really brings back memories.
There is a simple waiting room, lined with boxes - boxes and boxes, that is how much sushi this place sells. And for New Year's Day? Forget it, you have to order a month in advance or you're out of luck. I know it's a huge party of my over-the-top Oshogatsu.
The boxes are packed the traditional way, with one sheet of paper, no tape, just string to hold it together - like an origami-ed box of food. It is truly an artform to be able to wrap these boxes so quickly.
When you open it you're presented with good, no apologies, honest sushi.

But I think I've discovered the real reason O.G. loves Sakae. I saw this on the wall in the waiting area:
Yep, her fave young-man crush Apolo Anton Ohno eats here. You know she called in to vote for him on Dancing with the Stars at least TEN TIMES every night?? Yep. I wonder if Apolo Ohno knows he's selling large amounts of sushi to smitten little old ladies. He should probably get a cut of that.

Sakae Sushi
1601 W Redondo Beach Blvd
Ste 112

Gardena, CA 90247
(310) 532-4550

Labels: , , ,

3 Comments:

Blogger The Food Librarian said...

Yay Sakae! And you can't outrun a cane...them cane ladies are fast!

Great, now I'm totalllly hungry.

Tuesday, March 01, 2011 9:34:00 AM  
OpenID supahcute said...

I totally want sushi now!!

Man, I hate when foodies/bloggers/critics talk shit about neighborhood gems. If you don't get it, move on. Go take your camera somewhere else. Sheesh.

Tuesday, March 01, 2011 9:38:00 AM  
Anonymous Ally said...

Oooh, I can't wait to try this place! I'll be living with my granny for the summer and she lives in Gardena. Perfect! We'll have to go!

Monday, March 07, 2011 10:24:00 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home