Little Osaka is located in West Los Angeles area. It's west of Beverly Hills and east of Santa Monica. It is along Sawtelle Blvd, between Santa Monica Blvd and Olympic Blvd, 6 block long.
There have been many Japanese people living in the area from pre-WW II era. Several Japanese nurseries have been there from generation to generation, selling general plants and unique Japanese plants.
The area of West Los Angeles was a separate city until 1922. It was merged to city of Los Angeles then.
UCLA (University of California, Los Angeles), Santa Monica College, and Pepperdine University are located near by. Therefore, there are many students, faculties, and administrative staffs living in the area.
I used to live near by until 14 years ago. I visited Hide Sushi (founded 30 years ago or so), Granada Market, Safe & Save Market, Satsuma Import, Asahi Ramen (founded 20 years ago or so), Hurry Curry of Tokyo, Yakitoriya (founded about 15 years ago), Nijiya Market, and Mouse Fantasy (now it also operates Beard Papa), and etc. Also, Curry House opened there 5 or 6 years ago. Friends mentioned Kiriko Sushi is good, although I have not been there, yet. I visited Mizu 212 a few times. It's Shabu Shabu restaurant.
A site called, "Sawtelle Blvd.com"serves as a guidebook for Little Osaka area now. It lists 27 restaurants, 7 coffee/tea/Boba shops, 3 Karaoke boxes, 3 markets, and many more.
I did not know the area was called "Little Osaka". I wonder when it started.
A local free magazine called "Japan Up!" featured 'Little Osaka' in its August 2008 issue. Maybe, people started to call 'Little Osaka', because it's located west of the city, in contrast to 'Little Tokyo', which is located in downtown Los Angeles.
As I searched on the net, I found out that "Little Osaka" was featured on "New York Times" in October, 2006. This area must be a trendy spot these days.
Added 8/7/2008 17:42 LAX time: First there was "Giant Robot"Magazine, started by two UCLA graduates in 1994. They started to talk about Japanese pop culture and foods, and it evolved into a glossy Asian pop culture magazine. Then, in late October 2001, they opened "Giant Robot" store in Little Osaka area to bring Japanese imports to the fans. They contriburted a lot to introduce Japanese culture to Americans.
This summer, there are many Americans who travel Japan to experience foods and culture. The number has been increasing every year. Although less Americans travel Europe these days.
Dream On@LAへようこそ！ コメント、リンク大歓迎。. 留学からLA永住し28年以上経過。. ダンス、写真、映画、ヨガ、グルメ. 霊気、世界平和が趣味です。. Blog started 8/7/2007 Counter set 8/6/2008. Welcome to "Dream on@LA" blog! I welcome your comments. I live in LA, CA, USA. It's been over 28 years.