You can sit outside at Luckyfish, on Canon Drive in the heart of Beverly Hills, but that would defeat the purpose. The latest restaurant from the Innovative Dining Group, who are best known for their other places – Sushi Roku, Katana, and Robata Bar – brings the traditional Japanese kaiten-zushi idea to Los Angeles, and it is long overdue. Heading inside, you’ll immediately see why all the fun is there, as over 80 sushi, sashimi, and cooked foods move past the tables on a conveyor belt.
It’s a way of eating that’s been popular in Japan since the middle of the last century, and in New York City for decades, but hasn’t made it to L. A. until now. Generally designed to give diners a quick, less-expensive sushi experience, Luckyfish is determined to remain in that tradition, but with an important twist: this restaurant’s conveyor-belt sushi is excellent. No quality has been compromised here; in fact, each dish on the belt (with different color bands, indicating the price of the plate) is embedded with a radio chip, which tells the busy sushi chefs situated at the back of the strikingly modern space when it has overstayed its welcome, and it is quickly removed.
Prices range from $3.50 to $7.50 a plate, with two pieces on the sushi plates, and three pieces on the sashimi items. Once you’ve settled in and ordered one of Luckyfish’s reasonably priced bottles of sake (try the crisp and dry Osakaya Chobei Daiginjo Hyogo for $29), beer (Asahi, Sapporo, Kirin), or wine, you can jump right in. No need to wait to order, just take a look at the dishes chugging by on the belt, and start eating.
Don’t miss the Baked Crab cut roll, or the spicy Wasabi Toro sashimi; and you’ll want to make sure to taste the Albacore and Ginger roll, too. All your favorite traditional sushi/sashimi items will come around eventually – Unagi, Uni, Hamachi – and if it doesn’t, just ask one of the friendly servers that stop by every so often to see if you need anything.
Luckyfish features an extensive menu of cold and hot dishes, salads, noodles, soup, and rice as well. Some may drift past on the belt, but if not, simply order your favorites or explore some new delicacies. Check out the Miso Black Cod, wonderfully prepared with a complex miso sauce; try the Yellowtail with Yuzu Pepper Salsa for a spicy-fresh jolt; and keep the heat up with the perfectly sautéed Shishito (Japanese chili peppers). There are also different tempuras, calamari, edamame, teriyakis, miso soup, and gyoza.
Save room for a hit or two of mochi ice cream, those balls of chill surrounded by a sticky rice outer shell, or a bite of green tea cheesecake, and then smile when your bill arrives. Stuffed and happy, you’ll be amazed at the reasonable price, and will leave vowing to make Luckyfish a regular stop on your way through Beverly Hills.
338 North Cañon Drive
Beverly Hills, CA 90210