Ainoko joins the growing number of specialized chef counters that are popping up all over LA. Located inside Petite Taqueria, the Mexican inspired omakase multi-course experience is served at a small angular bar at the back of the restaurant.
Chef John Carlos Kuramoto created the menu, which is served twice each evening for 10 guests. Kuramoto has worked at some of LA's top restaurants including Providence, Michael's and Campanile.
As we were seated, Chef Kuramoto explained that "Ainoko" translates into "half breed," and the menu reflects a fusion of Mexican and Japanese flavors.
We sampled charred white corn soup, a small Ahi tuna tostada with avocado and chipotle soy sauce and a serrano chile escabeche.
The following courses included a nori blini with smoked roe; oyster and Hawaiian shrimp in a green chile sauce; Hamachi with hot oil and citrus emulsion; a pork and garbanzo taco with hummus; grilled octopus and miso aioli on a tortilla; a duck confit slider with chicken pate and a sukiyaki Japanese Wagyu taco.
Dessert was a refreshing last course of green tea ice cream topped with mocha donut churro balls and a black sesame seed topped caramel budino.
We loved the combination of flavors in this unique Mexican/Japanese omakase menu. Chef Kuramoto changes up the dishes every few weeks enabling diners to return to enjoy a new dining experience.
Dinnerware ceramic vessels by Match Stoneware.