If you’re in or anywhere near Gardena for breakfast, head to Painter’s Tape. This order-at-the-counter cafe is open every day from 8am-3pm and has a tremendous Japanese-influenced breakfast menu where nothing is more than $10. Expect things like steamed organic rice in a chicken broth, shabu shabu steak buns, and a curry and cheddar donut that will make you question every donut you’ve ever eaten.
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Shin Sen Gumi Yakitori in Gardena is an institution where you go to eat tremendous meat skewers in a low-key space.
Kotohira is a tiny noodle shop in a Gardena strip mall with a giant menu of udon, ranging from curry to creamy to green mochi.
Gardena Bowl Coffee Shop
Gardena Bowl Coffee Shop is an excellent Hawaiian diner in a bowling alley in Gardena.
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Santa Monica’s KazuNori is a hand roll-only sushi option from the people behind Sugarfish. Expect the same quality without the crazy wait.
Tokyo Hamburg is a rowdy Japanese restaurant in Koreatown that feels like a party from the moment you walk in.
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Millie’s in Silverlake is the classic breakfast spot you go to when you need an escape from LA.
Ototo in Echo Park is a casual Japanese spot with a lot going for it - including a huge sake selection - and a lot going against it, too.
Baran’s 2239 is a Hermosa Beach neighborhood spot that will make you feel like you’re at a potluck.
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