Downtown LA’s Arts District is certainly a hot spot thanks to fire-centric INKO NITO. Tucked
away on a side street, this moody, dimly-lit, Japanese-themed spot is recognizable by its
signature neon green sign. An expansive drink menu, sharing plates, and the fire-burning
kitchen in the center of the venue makes INKO NITO the perfect location for any group looking
for a fun night and a flavor-packed meal.
Disclaimer, if you take nothing else away from this article, you absolutely MUST order the
bone marrow. Slathered in house marinade and engulfed by the open fire, its rich and bubbling
for spreading on adorable, buttered and individualized toasts.
The drinks list is expansive,
including a aromatic and balanced Palomita—but take my word and order a round of Sake to
take your night to the next level. The drinks are a perfect way to reciprocate the bustling energy
that lives in this restaurant – exemplified by the open, fire and coal burning kitchen that is
placed directly in the center for the crowds to observe. Executive Chef Carlos walked me
through INKO NITO’s motto. He explains that in their cooking they use “absolutely no gas, no
electricity, everything is cooked with 100% Japanese Charcoal made of Oak, charred and
compressed to get a higher degree of heat.” Every dish is made accordingly over the fire,
leaving that crusted, blackened, and smoky residue on every bite.
Next on my list is the Ribeye steak. Brought to the table with an aromatic broth to pour over
your cut, this dish was of high-quality, perfectly fatty, and swirling with just the right amount of
fresh herbs and masterfully curated spices. Pair this with the scallop skewer small bite, for a DIY
surf and turf you won’t regret.