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Check Out This Incredible New Taiwanese Tasting Menu Spot in West LA

Newcomer Kato comes out of absolutely nowhere

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Kato, West LA
Kato, West LA
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.

Here’s a surprising new addition to the Westside dining landscape: Kato, a pan-Japanese and Taiwanese restaurant hovering near the border of West LA and Santa Monica. The exceedingly simple space is turning out some of that area’s most beautiful dishes right now, while managing to otherwise fly right under the radar.

Kato is the work of chef/owner Jonathan Yao, who most recently spent time staging in San Francisco at places like Coi, but was before that working the line at Alma. With Kato, Yao is bringing refined modern Japanese and Taiwanese dishes that rely on bright local produce and fresh seafood. Seriously, look at one of the restaurant's first dishes in their Instagram shot below.

smoked hamachi, charred scallion & cucumber #katorestaurant #santamonica #comingsoon

A photo posted by kato restaurant (@katorestaurant) on

The menu is mostly comprised of whatever Yao has on hand at the moment, worked up into a five course tasting menu that runs just $49. You can add a few side dishes like pork belly rice for $8, but that’s about it. You can make your reservations now over at OpenTable, which is recommended given that the space is rather small.

Kato just opened a couple of days ago, and for now is doing dinner only from 5:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. most nights of the week. That expands to 11 p.m. on Friday and Saturday night. Feel like joining the team? They’re currently hiring up for prep and line cooks.

11925 Santa Monica Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA