Blackship opens today in West Hollywood, one of the newest entries in an increasingly crowded restaurant zone nearby the corner of Santa Monica and La Cienega Boulevard. From Keiichi Kurobe, who’s opening his first big LA restaurant, Blackship fuses Italian and Japanese flavors seamlessly in a dreamy, intimate standalone building with a lovely garden patio to boot. The name is a reference to the European ships that came to Japan in the 1800s (and before), which opened trade to the West, and eventually brought in the use of new cooking techniques and ingredients.
The menu focuses on pasta, with a carbonara ramen, chrysanthemum gnocchi, and chicken karaage tortellini headlining the section. The intersection of the two cuisines continues with a T.K.G. arancini (short for tamago kake gohan, or egg and soy sauce beaten into rice for breakfast); albacore namerou with avocado, egg yolk, and rice chicharron, and in the kurobuta pork chop with koji polenta. With Japanese and Italian restaurants among the most popular in LA, it seems like a smart way to appeal to many different LA palates.
Blackship’s interior look comes from Sean Knibb of Knibb Design, who works a suave, dark interior with some nautical elements, and builds a lush patio space that seems to be all the rage in restaurant decor these days. Blackship is open at 6 p.m. for dinner Wednesday to Sunday, closed Mondays and Tuesdays.
Blackship. 8512 Santa Monica Boulevard, West Hollywood, CA 90069. 310-734-7553