Wabi on Rose is such a gem down in the heart of Venice; the heart of Rose street. Elevated sushi is a perfect description of Wabi on Rose and apparently this location is extra special because their other location burned down back in 2018. Such a bummer to hear, but the spot they are in now is so beautiful and such a little oasis that absolutely gives what it’s supposed to give.
The moment you get to the intersection where it’s at, you notice it rather quickly. It’s very lush and enclosed in greenery and I always love that when I go to restaurants. That said let’s get into another installment of Los Angeles restaurants to eat at with Wabi on Rose front and center. A hot spot for sushi that you don’t want to miss out on.
Entrance & Arrival to Wabi on Rose
Street parking in venice is what you make of it. When we went, we were able to park on the residential street on the same corner that Wabi on Rose is.
The restaurant has has high hedges that enclose the seating area, but where the sidewalk is there is also seating at tall boy style tables. I personally wouldn’t want to eat out on the sidewalk side unless it was totally full, but I really feel like the experience inside of the restaurant, or essentially on the other side of the hedges, really makes the vibe at Wabi on Rose unique.
Like any restaurant, Wabi has their cocktails which totally looped me in based on names alone; but of course with a full bar you can order what you would like. I didn’t know what to expect for their cocktails, as far as how they looked, I didn’t do that research this time, but I ordered a drink called Uggs in Summer. If you’re from LA there was definitely a period of time where girls, myself included, wore uggs in the summer. I used to ALWAYS wear uggs with jean mini skirts; it was truly my high school street style, so being in Venice with a girl friend that I’ve known since middle and high school, it felt right.
It’s made with vodka, watermelon, lemon, pink peppercorn and basil. Super light, super fresh, it was pretty, but it didn’t blow me away. It is a fresh drink, I would probably say light on the ice next time or shaken, but poured without ice to really enjoy the flavor. Otherwise, it was cool, I would order a lemon drop next time.
Lunch and Menu at Wabi on Rose
I love a good happy hour and/or meal that comes with extras especially when it comes to sushi. My girl friend and I went during lunch, so it was nice because the restaurant was essentially still empty. I did my research on this one and I saw they had a lunch special that came with a seaweed salad and miso soup. If it’s my first time a restaurant I love to try as many things as I can, it’s a huge bonus if they have a special that includes multiple items.
Lunch menu is simple, it’s 2 chef specials, sashimi or sushi, short rib bao, chicken bao, and vegan bao. All of those come with a seaweed salad and miso soup. I was hoping they would have hot and sour soup, but they didn’t. The seaweed salad was excellent, but the miso soup was just okay. I ate some of it, but didn’t go out of my way to make sure I finished it. I ordered the chefs special with 7 pieces of sashimi. It was all folded together like a rose which was really nice actually; it had scallops on the side which were absolutely perfect. So fresh, the dot of sauce that the scallops were topped with really made me want more.
We also ordered from the regular menu, the rolls are great sizes, definitely shareable in my opinion. Now if you’ve been to Katsuya and other restaurants, Catch included, they have tuna with crispy rice. Let me say something right now, the crispy rice from Wabi on Rose is a 10/10. It actually has such a great crisp and bite to it, it’s drizzled in eel sauce, it was a great bite.
The service was great! We were there early which I feel like was nice because there was no need to have us on a time limit compared to the time that we left. When we left, it was definitely becoming more crowded and it was the Friday of Labor Day weekend. Our server was so delightful, she made sure we were well taken care of and even gave us a free shot as her thank you to us being so nice to her.
One thing I love though, I can’t say it works 100%, but they give each table this spinning thing that helps keep flies away. I would say for the most part it works, but because the tables are a bit smaller it can be a bit of a situation. Before we got our food it was easy to keep it in the middle of the table, but once your food starts to come out, especially if you order a lot, the table starts to get cramped. I had to move the thing, that we’ll call a fan for context, to the edge of the table which was a bummer. OTHER THAN THAT, the service was wonderful.
Ambiance and Vibe
Last but certainly not least, the ambiance and overall vibe at Wabi on Rose is totally different than the Venice experience that you start with and that’s not shade, it’s just truth. Wabi is the type of restaurant that you would see in Beverly Hills or the Robertson area, it gives off that vibe to me. Very instagrammable, unique light fixtures, color palette of green and pink velvet with marble table tops. The greenery engulfs you, and whisks you away to a perfect sushi location right in the heart of Venice / Rose Street.
Great for a girls day date or dinner date. Great for a date with your husband or wife, I definitely want the dinner experience so that is on my to do list. It gives upscale, it gives feminine with a hint of masculine. If you can request a booth or a tall table, the booth was the real experience for me. I would say 3 people max though for the booth, it’s very intimate.
9/10 would recommend. Check out Wabi in Action
For other Hot Spot reviews check out Los Angeles Restaurants to Eat At: Cara Hotel.