Best Yakitori, March 2007
The cooks at West L.A.’s Nan Ban Kan are deliriously gifted. In Gardena, Shin-Sen-Gumi makes remarkable deep-charred mackerel. But Kokekokko takes yakitori —grilled meats and vegetables—down the final stretch. Bonhomie reigns in this crowded Little Tokyo landmark, where regulars hand glasses of beer over the counter to the cooks. What makes it so popular? The perfection of its skewers—chicken wings, gizzards, hearts, and livers cooked over flames expertly tended by chefs pivoting between counter and grill. Be here by six, or expect to wait.