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Gaji, A Modern Asian Restaurant in Downtown

Photo: Hazelnut Photography
Matthew Kang is the Lead Editor of Eater LA. He has covered dining, restaurants, food culture, and nightlife in Los Angeles since 2008. He's the host of K-Town, a YouTube series covering Korean food in America, and has been featured in Netflix's Street Food show.

Here is the interior of Gaji, a swell Asian eatery right smack in Downtown on the corner of 7th and Grand that quietly opened last week but officially serves lunch today . While there's some hefty competition like Mo-Chica, Sugarfish, and Bottega Louie (Coco Laurent is no more), Downtown's Restaurant Row will surely benefit from the creative dishes of Minh Phan, who last helmed the stoves at Beachwood Cafe before striking off to do a pop-up called Mignardises.

Gaji Shoot-1086.jpeg

Owner Linda Shin designed the clean, industrial space herself, adding in some tasteful furniture and accents to warm up the place a bit. In terms of food, the lunch menu has Asian fusion options like a bulgogi melt, pork belly baguette, and ginger molasses chicken salad while dinner gets more ambitious, almost Momofuku-like with uni-topped steamed egg with smoked bonito broth or allium-roasted whole loup de mer. The 35 seater officially commences lunch June 15 while dinner gets an official nod around early July (though it might be worth dropping by to see if they're soft open before then).
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523 W 7th Street, Los Angeles, CA