Wednesday, January 25, 2012

got cheese risotto? . . . in a giant block of cheese?

i am a big "bar-foodie" 
yup, i like going to bars, not to drink, but to eat their food! 

although i have completely stopped drinking for quite some months now,
there were times when couple girlfriends of mine & i would go to a bar,
order bunch of food during happy hour (way more than we can handle) without ordering any alcohol & sit there chatting for hoursss . . . which made the servers frown at times on busy nights because we were just taking up spots "eating" and not "drinking", as they mostly make business by selling alcohol,  not food

nevertheless, whether you like to drink or not
i am sure many would find japanese izakayas enjoyable as you can pretty much nibble on little bit of everything while grabbing a drink after a long day of work to wind down-

not sure what a izakaya is?
wikipedia puts it simply as "is a type of japanese drinking establishment which also serves food to accompany the drinks; they are popular, casual places for after-work drinking.  you order food & drinks throughout the course of meal as desired and unlike other japanese styles of eating, food items are usually shared  by everyone at the table. izakayas always offer wide variety of all sorts of dishes"

thankfully, i am surrounded by so many great japanese izakayas by living in los angeles area . . . but one of my favorite izakaya is definitely musha
one of the reason why i like coming to musha is because unlike some izakayas where it's smokey from yakitori or is crowded with drunk 20s, the torrance location actually is somewhat "homey"! 

it's a party!

 i learned the true joy of a ice-cold-beer after college, once i started working . . .
until then, i never used to appreciate beer at all because it made me full too quick & it got warm too fast & i didn't think it tasted good at all!
i don't know what it is about beer, but it really is more of a refreshing cold drink rather than alcoholic beverage after a tough day at work
just remember the voice that says "please drink responsibly" *wink*

whether it be bottled beer
or japanese draft beer by glass which is 10x better than american beers
or you share it by pitchers with friends
or you decide to drink a girlish sake
or even iced-oolong tea like myself,
have a drink & chat with friends over delicious izakaya food

 enough about drinks & onto musha's food!!!
their small dishes are all yummy and you won't be too disappointed with whatever you pick!
but i did notice that i keep choosing some of the same dishes over...and over...and over again, so i'd say some definitely are tastier than others (i will mark those with a star*)

i recommend that you try their signature dishes + grill + carb dish that will actually fill you up
and personally, i don't get much of their sashimi menu because i prefer to go to sashimi restaurants to eat those-
here are some of dishes that made the cut on the "photo-worthy" challenge ;)

ebi mayo mayo*
udon vongole
ai kamo ponzu
kabocha croquette
baguette gratin
buta kikuni
this was on manager's recommendation as "pork belly boiled for 4hrs
to tenderize and reduce fat; a block of this pork is so soft that you can
cut it with chopsticks"
buta kimchee*
musha's fried chicken*
musha's fried chicken*
spicy tuna dip
also on manager's recommendation as "you must have seen spicy tuna
in a roll, but we serve as a dip; try this with a crispy rice cracker"
tarako kimchee udon*
typhoon char-han

& last but not least . . .
musha's cheese risotto is really a must because it's just special! 
and it tastes good too, with strong bacon flavor (i mean, bacon-anything is good, right?)

it is on the manager's recommendation menu as, and rightfully so too, "italian dish with japanese creation. japanese grain brown rice cooked with chicken broth. then pan fried with bacon onion and a touch of heavy cream. served in a whole cheese bowl to your table"

but do remember that the cheese bowl is only for the show; you do not get to eat out of it, which disappointed me on my first visit ;)
so, a word of advice for follow photo lovers? take photos while the servers scoop out the risotto! they will pause for you, but you really can't wait until they are gone, because you will just be left with a dish of risotto which won't make the photo very special

musha's cheese risotto**
musha's cheese risotto**
musha's cheese risotto**
musha's cheese risotto**
musha's cheese risotto**
black sesame ice cream with honey

& an additional perks for those looking for chill places for a birthday party!
this is so cool!!! 
they turn off the light of the whole restaurant to sing you birthday song + the kitchen does a fire show to get people excited!!! 
. . . i felt so bad for whoever that had to do the fire show that day because there were three birthdays that night in the span of less than an hour! he must have been sweating in the back, swinging the wok! 

i wish i actually was able to give you detailed food description, as their website didn't do a very good job explaining other than few that made the manager's pick! so i will make sure to make an "update" to this post next time i visit musha again!

i am now happilyfull ♥ 

see you on my next adventure!


  1. Oh my gosh... I want to jump on a plane right now and eat there for dinner! Your pictures are great! The food looks yummy! What a fun way to spend a birthday or any night!

  2. come come come!!! :D or maybe in march with everyone? :D

  3. As soon as I saw your post title, I immediately thought of Musha! And sure enough, Musha it is! I haven't been there in years, and I must go back soon!

  4. hahahah cynthia~ you really should come up to la more often ;D