Momotaro, a multi-level mecca of Japanese food and design, offers myriad dining experiences: The first floor, devoted to izakaya—a cocktail, whiskey, and sake bar with elevated bar snacks— was designed to evoke wandering the back alleys full of street vendors during mealtime in Tokyo. Venture to the main level and you can eat at eye-level with the sushi chefs at bar-height tables. Apparently the designers looked to the post-World War II era in Japan, known as the “economic miracle,” to inform their design decisions: it’s a mash-up of Japanese forms and materials merged with Western architectural styles. Against this backdrop enjoy such inventive delicacies as Santa Barbara uni rice with burgundy black truffle ($22), hamachi tuna roll with Satsuma orange ponzu, Serrano chili, and shallots ($12), or anything from the full lists of sushi, nigiri, and sashimi (starting at $3). Don’t miss the inventive cocktails either; if you’re feeling adventurous (or tyrannical) try the Warlord’s Bounty with Cruzan aged light rum, Rhum Clement pure cane, Mandarine Napoléon, wasabi almond, and lime.
820 West Lake
For the main dining room:
Sunday to Thursday: 5pm to 11pm
Friday to Saturday: 5 pm to 12 am
Tuesday to Thursday: 6 pm to 11 pm
Friday to Saturday: 6 pm to 2 am