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Mastro’s Ocean Club Debuts Huge Seafood and Steak Restaurant in Downtown LA

Plus, a labor union for Genwa Korean barbecue, and how inflation is affecting taco prices

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Seafood tower from Mastro’s Ocean Club.
Seafood tower from Mastro’s Ocean Club.
Mastro’s Ocean Club
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.

Mastro’s Ocean Club, the more seafood-oriented version of the popular Beverly Hills steakhouse, has opened a 350-seat branch with an outdoor dining area that overlooks Arena at L.A. Live. Given its prime location, the ritzy seafood and steakhouse will likely be a popular pre- and post-event dining destination, as well as a buzzy convention/expense account spot. Like other Mastro’s locations, it’ll have live music in the Piano Lounge to go with raw bar selections, prime-grade steaks, lobster mashed potatoes, and the restaurant’s lauded warm butter cake. Executive chef Marcus Andrade oversees the kitchen while Robert Spindler will serve as the general manager. Hours run 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. daily.

Dining room of Mastro’s Ocean Club in Downtown LA.
Dining room of Mastro’s Ocean Club in Downtown LA.
Mastro’s Ocean Club

The first Korean barbecue labor union

Genwa Korean BBQ, which has locations in Beverly Hills, Mid-Wilshire, and Downtown, has created a union, reports LAist, who writes that employees at the restaurants are the first to organize at a privately owned Korean restaurant in the U.S. Genwa was forced to pay a $2 million penalty for wage theft and labor law violations in 2020. With 325 servers, dishwashers, and cooks in the union, the organization will prevent that kind of situation from happening again.

On the subject of Korean barbecue in LA

The Los Angeles Times has a story about how the city’s desire to phase out natural gas in buildings could affect Korean barbecue spots and Asian restaurants that use woks. Restaurant operators say gas stoves and woks are critical to the way food is cooked, either in the kitchen or on tabletops. LA City Council passed a motion that would ban gas appliances in new residential and commercial buildings by 2023.

More bread at McCall’s

Jyan Isaac Bread is now distributing its breads to McCall’s Meat and Fish in Santa Monica on Montana Avenue from Wednesday to Saturday, giving greater reach to one of the Westside’s best bakeries.

The Fundamental replacement

Westside reporter Toddrickallen says that a new restaurant called The French Way is coming to the former Fundamental LA space in Westwood, aiming for a June 15 opening.

Taco inflation is real

Reddit users are poking fun at the rising prices of Tito’s Tacos, which now start at $4 apiece without cheese and up to $5.10 including its signature shredded cheese, up from a little over $2 just a few years ago, as evidence that inflation is really happening. Consider, however, that Tito’s now takes credit cards, which it had not in the past, and that it pays workers above minimum wage. Oh, and every order continues to come with free chips and salsa.