Shojin - Culver City

  • Vegan Vegan
    ( 25 reviews )

12406 W Washington Blvd, Culver City, California, USA, 90066

Sister restaurant to Shojin in downtown LA, this one opened in 2013 on a busy street - look for the lotus root design. Offers modern vegan Japanese cuisine with refreshing beverages, a variety of appetizers and sushi rolls plus ramen and daily desserts. Intimate setting with dim lighting. Open Tue-Sat 5:30pm-10:30pm, Sun 5:00pm-10:00pm.

Categories: Vegan, Japanese, Macrobiotic, Organic, Take-out

25 Reviews

First Review by eric

Flavorful Food - Edit

If you like flavorful food, it is the perfect place for you. However some of the dishes were too salty for me. I liked the green forest. All their desserts were delicious.

Pros: Nice ambiance

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Inventive menu - Edit

We came here while they were serving a Halloween-themed tasting menu that was very creative. The presentation was great and the food was good.

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Definitely! - Edit

Even though the descriptions of the different dishes on the menu look like they would be similar to each other, when you get them, they taste wildly different from each other and are unique from anything else I’ve tried. Everything was so delicious. Our favorites were the dynamite roll and cauliflower roll. The standard ramen sauce had more tahini in it than I would have liked. The tempura pumpkin was amazing (seasonal special). The staff are super friendly and the atmosphere inside is really nice and isolated from the ugly outside. It’s not only vegan, but also gluten and cashew free (including the drinks).

Pros: Amazing food, Friendly staff, Nice atmosphere

Cons: Expensive

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Better then I could have imagined - Edit

I like to try new Vegan restaurants and gave this a First try. The staff was Very attentive and the Food was overall amazing and tasty.

Pros: the Crab Cake was as good as it looks in the pics

Cons: nothing!

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Handcrafted Vegan Cuisine - Edit

Since this location opened back in 2013 I've eaten here numerous times. Was just here again, and here's my updated Shojin Culver City review.

The restaurant is in a discreet location near the corner of Centinela with no signage and on a busy driving boulevard with no walking traffic. You have to be looking for it. Parking is on the street right in front or around the back. / Inside is intimate with dimmed lighting. On each table is usually a candle light. The servers are pretty Japanese woman dressed in black outfits who are always pleasant and polite.

I've eaten at the original Shojin in LA little Tokyo many times and have always enjoyed my meals there. Here the menu is similar: vegan sushi rolls, salads, appetizers, a couple of ramen, tasting menu, desserts.

Most of the sushi rolls I've tried have been tasty and inventive, though you might ask to keep sauce on the side if you don't want salty.

Shjoin frequently features special multi-course dinners for the holidays (Valentines, New Years, Xmas, Thanksgiving, etc.). Those are always a treat.

It's finer dining, special meal kind of place, so prices reflect that and are higher than typcial veg eateries.

Updated from previous review on 2016-12-19

Pros: attentive staff, good presentation, inventive dishes

Cons: need a sign outside, some dishes salty

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amazing food and service - Edit

Everything I tried was amazing including the desserts.

Pros: creativity , selection , great date night restaurant

Cons: small space

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so so - Edit

this location doesn't have hot food like ramen soup noodle. interesting take on vegan sushi and it's not bad. but it's not like I dream of going back for any dish. actually very expensive.

Pros: vegan

Cons: expensive, street parking only

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Great experience. ^_^ - Edit

We had a wonderful time at Shojin. The food was exquisite and tasty, the service was super nice and classy. We were visiting LA briefly, so only went once, but we are definitely stopping by again on our next visit. I love eating in places where I know the kitchen is fully vegan, and I'm enjoying a meal made with care from the best wholesome ingredients. Thank you Shojin, for holding your high standards. We'll be back.

Pros: Nice ambience, Good service, Organic and wholesome food

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Vegan pastas are unique - Edit

I'm a fan of the downtown branch, so I'm very glad Shojin Culver City is as outstanding. Went there for brunch and everything was tasty, original and high quality. The same high standards of quality in food, drinks, decor and presentation and excellent service as in downtown. I'm glad we have now two great options to have superb Japanese vegan food in LA. By the way, you can only find the best vegan pastas in LA here, not in downtown.

Pros: High quality and tasty food, Excellent service, Food presentation and decor

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so good - Edit

This is a great place for an intimate dinner. We ordered the set menu, which was great. My favorite dish was the "crab" cake. The service is impeccable.

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Makes me want to move to LA - Edit

Just reaffirming previous reviews; phenomenal food. It's serious cuisine, and not cheap as a result, but worth it. Please open a restaurant in Australia!

Pros: Vegan sushi even better than you could hope, Diverse menu (pumpkin tempura is that good), Great atmosphere and staff

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Best sushi I have ever had! - Edit

Yesterday I had the pleasure of trying hands down the best sushi I've ever eaten.
Shojin is a all natural organic vegan sushi restaurant located in Little Tokyo (Los Angeles).
If you are looking for a high quality 5 star restaurant for some delicious vegan food, Shojin is the place to go.
One of dishes we ordered was torched

Pros: High quality food , Incredible service , Classy vibe

Cons: Miso soup lacked a little flavour , Make sure you get your parking validated , There is not more places likes this

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great atmosphere - Edit

great for date night. my wife and I go here when we splurge and get a babysitter. very romantic atmosphere and the food is great.

Pros: gourmet vegan sushi great service romantic atmosph

Cons: parking not cheap not well marked on outside, look

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Phenomenal! - Edit

Incredible vegan sushi. everything is tasty and freshly made

Cons: so far from the valley. should be another location

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Decent Sushi - Edit

I wanted to like it, but was not blown away. The rolls were inventive. I would have preferred of they were a little more classic. Seemed a bit on the expensive side too. The wait staff were all sweet & attentive though.

Pros: staff

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Oh my god, this place is so amazing, I daydream about it. I had one of the best meals of my life here. We ordered a bunch of items, each one more delicious than the last. Some highlights: the shishito peppers in miso sauce were absolutely incredible and the Pirates of the Crunchy roll was probably the best sushi roll that has ever entered my mouth. My mouth is watering just writing about it. This is going to be my go-to spot every time I'm in LA.

Pros: Amazingly delicious food, Nice and attentive staff

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Happy Thanksgiving - Edit

We went to the Culver City location for Thanksgiving. The special Thanksgiving menu was delicious and beautifully presented. The service was excellent, and our time there was relaxing and enjoyable. A treat!

Pros: Excellent food, Attentive, friendly service, Charming ambience

Cons: Would be helpful to have better signage

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Impressive all round! - Edit

A highlight of our vegan food trek through LA. We'd never had exclusively vegan Japanese before so this filled us with anticipation... and it payed off.

The presentation of all the food was superb, the flavour combinations were all winners and there were some brave ingredient choices that worked extremely well. Only the green tea souffle didn't dazzle as much as I hoped it would - no ooze! Everything else we tried surpassed our expectations. Great cocktails presentation too!

There was a simple, elegant ambiance topped with polite service - this was a great experience all round. On the pricey side for sure but this is a treat I'd be happy to go back to and pay for again and again.

Want to impress someone with fine dining? This is a place to take them.

Pros: Delicious vegan food, Superb presentation, Excellent service

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A Hidden Gem - Edit

My wife and I were looking for a vegan restaurant while attending a conference near LAX and with the help of Happy Cow found Shojin.
However when I say found we almost didn't - there is no sign on the outside of the building! At least when we were there. I guess that adds to the mystique. We drove by and finally walked block, parking is bad, but glad we did. Pay careful attention to the address.
Once inside we were greeted by 2 young ladies and from that point on add 1-3 servers waiting on us. Perhaps a bit over done, but they genuinely want you to have a good experience .
Many menu options and the food was well presented and good. During the course of our meal when I was asked about replacing a plate that was barley used I said no and was met with a look of utter disbelief. Obviously that wasn't the right answer so once corrected my waitress was happy.
The multiple variations of sushi were wonderful and it is all organic. That of course makes it a bit more expensive but the flavors are great.
The ambience of the inside is quiet and decorated tastefully. What a breath of fresh air over the hotel.

Pros: Great food, a little higher in price, Amazing service

Cons: Hard to find, on busy street corner, Off street parking

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Shojin is a special treat - Edit

Shojin is a special occasion kind of restaurant--one that you go to treat yourself and family, celebrate a milestone, or impress a date. The entire menu is vegan, and the food is carefully crafted and full of flavor.

The sushi rolls are especially tasty. I recommend ordering a few different plates of rolls to share with friends.

The desserts are incredible. They usually have several on hand each day, each marvelous. Try the hot molten lava chocolate cake paired with vanilla ice cream--it's divine.

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Too slow - Edit

We love Shojin in Downtown LA. But this place leaves so much to be desired. We had 7:15 reservations and we were seated immediately. I informed them that we had to leave at 9:00 to catch a flight out of LAX. They didn't take our order until 7:47, that included our drink order. Not even water before that. The food trickled out, some things were mediocre at best. Most were not worth eating, other than the fact that we were hungry and didn't have time to go elsewhere. Only two things were sent back, the pumpkin soup was nothing special. It tasted like pumpkin purée that had been watered down. Boring. Switch that to miso and it was okay. The Kabocha Pumpkin Penne took an hour to arrive and was barely warm. The kicker was the 20% gratuity that was added to the bill. It is not mentioned anywhere on their menu so I ask. "It's on the website." I informed the server that I wanted that removed and then I would pay the bill and tip accordingly. She complied. I have no intention of returning to this location. When all was said and done, dinner was nearly $30 per person.

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Superb food, hard to find - Edit

We almost didn't get to eat here because it's difficult to find. Not because of location or anything like that, because they seem to have embraced this hipster nonsense whereby restaurants don't actually have visible signs above their doors. Once we found it though, we were thoroughly impressed. Presentation was amazing, all the appetizers and rolls we tried were delicious and complex. Highly recommend the creamy "oysters" and the Pirates of the Crunchy roll. Two appetizers and five rolls were enough to put the two of us in a food coma and were well worth the $100+tip we payed for them.

Pros: Vegan sushi!, Very polite staff, Incredible, complex flavors

Cons: Expensive, Staff almost *too* polite, No sign

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An Elegant Vegan Occasion. - Edit

I visited Shojin for brunch after my friends raved and raved about great food, kind staff, and beautiful ambiance. They were right on all accounts.

Everything reflected much care. The sushi was delicious and artful. Our waitress was meticulously dressed and doting. The meal made us feel wonderful.

The only negative thing I can say, is that the AMAZING sake cocktail was tiny- half of a champagne glass, the other half was foam. I wanted more!

Pros: Beautiful/Delish Food, Friendly Staff, Ambiance

Cons: Street parking

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Shojin - New Location! Amazing food and service! - Edit

I joined a couple of friends for a fantastic lunch at the new Shojin location in Culver City.

If you don't know, Shojin the restaurant is named after the practice of Buddhist temples in Japan serving vegan cuisine to the public. This practice is called Shojin Ryori.

I had eaten numerous times at the downtown Shojin location, and this has been one of my favorite restaurants in the world since it opened. I was very excited to hear that Shojin had opened a Culver City location which is a mere 25 minute bike ride from where I live.

The new branch of this restaurant is a bit smaller than the other location, and the decor is different, but I believe the menus are the same.

The service at this restaurant is perfect. The waiting staff is very attentive, and don't overlook any details that make dining here an absolute pleasure.

The food at Shojin is amazing, but quite expensive if you come in on an empty stomach.

Here is what we ordered:

Shojin fried egg roll, fried gobo with vegan mayo,
apricot kale salad, edamame salad
purple treasure sushi roll (with fried eggplant cubes on
top), forest sushi roll (with fried broccoli florets on top), east sushi roll (with fried tofu cubes on top),
orange seitan chicken entree with tofu and brown rice
molten lava w/ vanilla ice cream, strawberry cheesecake w/ berry n' plum ice cream, genmatcha green tea

The appetizers and portions here are relatively small, but what they lack in amounts they make up for in the unique flavors and perfect textures. The salads were subtle, yet delicious.

My favorite dishes of this Shojin are their cut rolls. Each roll has its own unique personality and flavors, and are all just mouth-watering. A tremendous amount of care and detail is put into each dish, and I have yet to have a cut roll from Shojin that isn't a perfect "10".

The desserts at Shojin are a wonderful treat and ending to one of the best meals I have ever had. The flavors and textures of the desserts are decadent and delightful, and the final chapter of our lunch left all of us on a high note.

Shojin is not inexpensive, but the food quality and service is so amazing that I find the value here to be quite reasonable.

I really love this restaurant! Thank you again, Shojin, for such a memorable afternoon.

Pros: Excellent food, Friendly Staff, Cozy vibe

Cons: Small portions

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Great to have a closer location! - Edit

I've been a fan of Shojin for years now and often said it's my favorite place in Los Angeles. I've only eaten at the downtown location a handful of times since it's far from where I live so it's wonderful to have this new location, which is at the west end of Culver City.
It's a small place, intimate, and from the minute you walk inside you'll feel that you've been transported someplace out of LA. The waitresses are very sweet and attentive. While the menu is smaller than downtown, and seems to focus more on sushi, the food & presentations are excellent and as good as their other location.
We have nothing like this (vegan, gourmet, Japanese) on the Westside, and this place is bound to catch on and develop a following.
It will be great if/when they open for lunch during the week and would be nice if they offer a daily special. It's costly to eat there, but really worth it. I'll be as regular as I can afford.
I'm going again this weekend, can't wait!

Pros: presentation, intimate, vegan sushi

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