Mori Sushi

Head chef is leaving. Second chef is taking over. What does the future hold for Mori Sushi?

I like the second chef and think he’ll take Mori Sushi to new heights. Mori Sushi is still arguably the top sushi restaurant in town, even if it does serve non-traditional, kaiseke-like dishes to cater to clowns like me who disrespect the sushi. Well, I figure Q Sushi is tops right now, though I am surprised that Mr. Q hasn’t decided to turn it into a $$$ circus like most American sushi restaurants.

Interesting. I was just there. Where is he going?

By head chef, do you mean Maru san? Isn’t he now the owner?

Yes and yes. He said he’s going to work at a branch of a NY-based chain of sushi restaurants that’s opening up in Hollywood.

I believe that will be Sushi of Gari.

By second chef do you mean Taketoshi or Yoshi? I think both are perfectly capable of assuming control although I personally prefer to sit in front of Yoshi by the slightest of margins.

Well, if he was really the owner and has chosen to leave to work at a branch of another chain then you have to wonder about the future of Mori.

Yah I wonder about that. Mori-san gave it up to go to NY. Sold it to the current owner. Who now leaves after a few years to work at another place? Seems like a vote of no confidence.

Our dinner there we were the only people at the bar. And only one other person had eaten there all evening (she was at a table and left a little after we arrived).

Yeah, it’s often depressingly empty when I go. So is Q Sushi, for that matter.

It would be a terrible blow to the LA sushi scene if we lost Mori.

Mori went to New York? Where’d you get that? I’m pretty sure he’s still in L.A. He’s in the rice business. And pottery.

And then there’s this. Morihiro Onodera turns his culinary artistry into pottery creations

@MrFoodiepants I read that LA Times article before when it came out. Definitely know he’s back doing pottery (which he loves).

The NY comment was from a thread on our old board I read. IIRC someone had mentioned speaking with Mori-san back then and there was a possibility he was going to NY after selling Mori Sushi.

Yes, Mori’s Satsuki Koshihikari rice is being used at Okipoki in DTLA. It is really really good.

Wow that’s so sad to hear. So glad I was able to go once and was served by Maru-san. When is his last day?

Just saw on Facebook that Morihiro Onodera was serving food (a la Mori Sushi) for an event at Offramp Gallery in Pasadena last month (heard it was $200 pp). One of my greatest regrets was not attending one of the guest chefs 12 Nights of Christmas when he was there at Meadowood some years back.

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I ate here last night and the OP got it wrong. Taketoshi-san (who is not the head chef) has left and will be working with his brother at Sushi Gari when it opens in Hollywood. Taketoshi’s brother, who I believe formerly worked at Asanebo, will be the head chef at Sushi Gari. Maru-san and Yoshi-san continue to carry on happily at Mori (thank the lord).

And on that note, they’re carrying on as humbly, meticulously, and gloriously as ever. Some standouts from last night were tempura’d bamboo (pictured below on the small bites platter), a kelp soup with a scallop pancake bobbing happily in the middle of it, nigiri bamboo (pictured below), a flounder whose name I wish I could remember because it was scandalously soft and yielding, the best bafun uni that’s ever graced my tongue, and a saba handroll to close that in its splendor throws a shadow over the more ubiquitous blue crab.


Thank goodness. The loss of Mori would have been a significant blow to LA’s sushi cred.

Thank you for reporting back.


And lovely pictures.

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Thanks for the clarification. I’m with @Porthos, thank goodness it wasn’t a potential shut down and loss of ownership. Maru-san is great.

great news!

Wow. The power of rumors.

I too confirmed with the staff at Mori (via phone) that Maru-san has no plans of going anywhere currently.

No offense at all intended, just out of pure curiosity on my part: What was your source for the OP, @Alkiegourmand?