337 E. 1st St.
Los Angeles, CA 90012
When I first moved to LA from Pasadena and I lived in K-town with a good friend of mine by the name of Takeshi Nishimoto, a brilliant guitarist who taught me how to just love making music in the moment. We had many a night making music in our place and then grabbing food afterwards. As any of you know there aren't many places that are open super late (at least that have good food) in LA. I was fortunate that he knew of one such place in Downtown LA (on the edge of Little Tokyo) called Suehiro Cafe.
When I had no job and watched TV a good portion of the day as a kid, I would see this show that I still don't know the name of, but it was on KCET and it was like a diner version of Cheers except really cheesey and seemed as if the stars were all extras prior to doing this show. Somehow Suehiro's reminds me of that place. I would call it a family Japanese diner. There are 2 waitresses that are there that have been there since I started going there in 2000. One's a grandma type and the other is a sweet bubbly 20 something who is the picture of Japanese sweetness... just constantly adorably cute. Me and my wife come here and forget about what the rest of the world is like. It just has that effect on us. We've been blessed to find a place like that in LA.
The food is Japanese standard faire with an emphasis on noodle bowls and combination meals. The noodle bowls are yummy with very well balanced portions. I usually get the combination plate which has chicken teriyaki and tuna sashimi and comes with sliced pickle cucumber, potato salad(the odd man out but very tasty) and shredded cabbage salad which has a dressing that I wish I knew what it was cause it's so good and Celeste always has a hard time getting me to eat vegetables at home. I will also mention that it comes with a scoop of ice cream and I always get the pineapple cause it's so perfect for after the meal with whatever I've gotten. The tuna has always been very fresh and nice colored when I've gone here, and rest of the food is just good and consistent. This night we also got a Chicken Katsu Curry over rice which was huge (leftovers were great as well), Spam Onigiri and their Shumai which we almost always get. It was a blessed evening and I must admit that it's nights like last night that make me so happy I live in LA, where I can get good food and a great atmosphere.
One last little bit of advice is that the area is street parking only. Seeing as it it Little Tokyo area you shouldn't have to worry too much about scoring a parking spot and remember the LA insider advice that after 6pm loading zones are legal to park in(I promise you you won't get ticketed) and there are a fair amount of loading zones in that neck of the woods. I won't call this a date spot but it's a date spot that reminds me and Celeste of when we were just dating and life was like a sitcom with extras serving me food.
Free Drink Refills: Yes
Entree Price Range: Noodle Bowls are $6.50 average, Over Rice plates are $7 average and the big combo dinners are about $12 to $14 average.