We were in Santa Monica last week, visiting the Getty museums and had an opportunity to sample more of the wealth of nearby restaurants. Roku’s first location in Hollywood opened in 1997, and remains the backbone for the group, which includes locations in Santa Monica, Pasadena, Las Vegas and Scottsdale. Investors include Ryan Seacrest and Tori Spelling and the crowd was definitely upscale. The Santa Monica location faces directly on Ocean Avenue, so there is a nice view of the park and plenty of tourists. The prices are a little expensive, even for Santa Monica, but I would blame part of that on the great location.
The interior is dark with small pools of light over the tables. They have an outdoor section with heat lamps, but on the night we visited it was foggy and a little damp, so we sat indoors.
We ordered some edamami and a chilled bottle of Ozeki Osakaya Chobei, which is a premium sake named after the founder of Ozeki. This is a Daiginjo sake, brewed from highly polished rice. Fifty percent of the rice grain is polished away. Ozeki Osakaya Chobei has a rich and fruity aroma and a delicate flavor which goes great with fish.
They had Kumamato Japanese oysters with three sauces which were cold, sweet and delicious.
We ordered a variety of sushi and steamed shrimp dim sum. The sushi was fresh and good, the service prompt and courteous and the setting comfortable. For instance, the waitress explained the the Truffle butter for the edamami was too greasy for most patrons and explained our questions about the menu completely and guided us to popular dishes. This was a good sushi restaurant in a great location, if you are looking for sushi in Santa Monica on the ocean, this would be a good choice. This is permanently busy establishment. I think that is partly because it's ocean front and straddling one of the most touristy stretches in Santa Monica. So there's a lot of passing trade, best to make reservations.