Abbot Kinney is one of Venice's (in fact all of L.A.'s) trendiest, most pleasant, cute, pedestrian-friendly streets. It has tons of great restaurants, coffee shops, and boutiques.
Wabi-Sabi has been a favorite sushi restaurant of mine for years. The space is cool, modern, and clean, while being comfortable (cozy even) at the same time. The servers are always pleasant and attractive--and the food is spot-on. The crunchy shrimp roll is the one dish I am crazy for. It's a spicy platter of a cut shrimp tempura roll that is one of my favorite very favorite meals. It is made with soy paper (which I usually request for any roll) and all kinds of delicious sauces (one of which I think is Sriracha) on the plate for dipping.
The miso soup is really flavorful and always hot, the cocktails are interesting, well-made, and strong, and the fish is fresh. There are also plenty of hot dishes (small and large), for the non-sushi lover in your life, and some great dessert options too.
There is a very good Happy Hour for select food and drinks from 5:30 p.m. (when they open) to 6:30 p.m. daily.
Wabi-Sabi is located at 1637 Abbot Kinney Boulevard in Venice, Calif. Info: (310) 314-2229, wabisabisushi.com
-- Leslie Anne Wiggins
Photo credit: Open Table