On November 16, Innovative Dining Group debuted its forthcoming flagship concept ROKU, bringing sophisticated Japanese-inspired fare to West Hollywood. ROKU will elevate the traditional teppanyaki experience with an array of contemporary creations. The sprawling 8,000-square-foot indoor-outdoor space combines a cutting-edge setting on the Sunset Strip with high-quality ingredients and sushi. ROKU also serves as an innovation hub for the IDG culinary team to experiment and craft new dishes for the global brand’s other Japanese concepts in Los Angeles, Newport Beach, Las Vegas, Scottsdale, and Dubai.
“With ROKU, IDG will present teppanyaki, a concept with a distinct perception, in a creative new way. For us, it is important to showcase our vision of teppan style dining with a polished display of culinary mastery, knife work, and exceptional ingredients,” says Lee Maen, partner/founder of Innovative Dining Group. “ROKU will blend some of the core sensibilities from Sushi Roku with our evolving signature style in order to offer something new for today’s intelligent diners.”
The culinary team behind ROKU’s innovative menu is led by Corporate Executive Chef Tyson Wong, who alongside IDG’s Japanese executive chefs Hiroshi Shima and Jiro Kobayashi, oversees the development of the restaurant’s three distinct components—teppanyaki, sushi, and omakase, and hot and cold dishes.
Teppan chefs artfully prepare the highest quality proteins from both land (A-5 Japanese Wagyu, Dry Aged New York Steak, Jidori Chicken) and sea (Santa Barbara Spot Prawns, Hokkaido Scallops, Lobster Tail) at interactive, communal grill tables. Teppanyaki offerings will be accompanied by Japanese mushroom consommé, kale salad with mushrooms, hibachi shrimp, seasonal vegetables with shiso pesto, and steamed rice, with miso mustard, ginger, and truffle chimichurri dipping sauces.
“Bringing teppanyaki cuisine to Los Angeles in a new, unexpected way is an opportunity I’ve always dreamed of,” Chef Wong says. “L.A. attracts a sophisticated and international clientele, and we hope they appreciate our boundary-pushing menu.”
ROKU’s experienced sushi chefs will prepare traditional sushi and sashimi with the highest grade fish, in addition to an inventive six-course omakase, behind a live-edge walnut sushi bar. Guests can also enjoy iconic dishes from the Sushi Roku brand including Yellowtail Sashimi with diced chilies (the restaurant’s most popular dish), “Hanabi” featuring spicy tuna over crispy rice, and Seared Albacore Sashimi with crispy onions.
The beverage program showcases a thoughtful list of sake, wine, and one of the most extensive collections of Japanese whisky in Los Angeles, curated by beverage director Charity Johnston and general manager Andrey Godzhik. The exclusively Japanese beer list consists of nearly 20 selections, including lesser-known brands in the U.S., such as Yo-Ho and Kiuchi.
The space features sweeping grand mahogany windows, which pivot outward toward Sunset Boulevard. At the restaurant’s entrance, a 20-foot custom-painted mural by local emerging street artist Hans Haveron depicts Japanese iconography in bold black, grey, and red hues, with backlit glass panels. The patio dining areas share a relaxed, Asian resort styling. Larger parties have the choice of banquettes, larger round tables, or the communal round. A cluster of circular center booths are upholstered in a playful floral pattern and nine oversized silk pendant fixtures hang from above. Seating is an eclectic combination of upholstered booths, settees and Mid-Century “hair pin” chairs. Leather armchairs and upholstered side chairs are paired with flamed white oak tables enhancing a relaxed, stylish feel. An overhead skylight with vintage Japanese lanterns illuminates the lounge.
While the front section of the restaurant offers a bar and lounge area with tables and booths, the back half houses the sushi bar crafted from live-edge walnut wood, where walk-in guests can enjoy sushi and omakase preparations. Large authentic sake barrels suspended above create a visual separation between sushi and teppanyaki. Imported from Japan, ROKU’s four teppanyaki grills are paired with a custom walnut top. Large parties of up to 28 guests can enjoy an authentic Japanese cooking experience. The three colorful hoods above the grills provide a dramatic backdrop to the performance. The restaurant also contains a private dining room, which will be built out for events in the coming months.