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Japanese Buffet Party Spot Oiwake Shutters Wednesday in Little Tokyo

The longtime drink and cheap bites place is calling it quits.

Oiwake, Little Tokyo
Oiwake, Little Tokyo
Farley Elliott is the Senior Editor at Eater LA and the author of Los Angeles Street Food: A History From Tamaleros to Taco Trucks. He covers restaurants in every form, from breaking news to the culture, people, and history that surrounds LA's dining landscape.

Casual Japanese buffet spot Oiwake is down and soon to be out, with plans to shutter at the end of the month.

That leaves only a few more days for folks to enjoy the Little Tokyo gem, which has been dutifully plating up weekday lunch buffet options for less than $10. Oiwake never sought out the sort of fame that comes with more prominent izakayas in town, instead hoping to fill its 150 seats with locals and regulars simply looking to eat well (and for cheap), while downing beers and having a generally great time. Midtown Lunch seemed to agree back in 2011 when exploring the menu there, calling Oiwake a deal that "shouldn’t be missed" for anyone working nearby.

The departure was first detailed on the Oiwake Facebook page, with longtimers chiming in to wish the place well after all these years. No official reason was given for the closure, but it’s entirely possible that the long skyrocketing rents of Downtown LA have finally come to call at even the most casual Little Tokyo spot like this one.

The last night of service at Oiwake is this Wednesday, September 30.


122 Japanese Village Plaza Mall, Los Angeles, CA 90012 (213) 628-2678 Visit Website