Points of interest are slowly populating ROW DTLA, former industrial space that now counts more than 1 million square feet of offices, retail, and restaurants. Smorgasburg LA food market and Dulce Dos coffee bar were part of the redevelopment’s first culinary wave, followed by businesses like Rappahannock Oyster Bar and Paramount Coffee Project. We’re now well into the second wave, which includes a fast casual Japanese fried chicken concept called Pikunico from respected chef-owner Kuniko Yagi, who last cooked at lauded restaurants like Hinoki & The Bird, Comme Ça, and Sona.
Pikunico doesn’t sell any alcohol. Instead, to complement her beautifully fried thighs and wings and “golden” fried chicken sandwiches, Yagi serves judiciously sweet, house-made yuzu-ade and lightly caffeinated iced green tea instead of trendier, more powerful matcha. The counterwoman allowed me to order an atypical Japanese-inspired Arnold Palmer ($4) that combined equal parts yuzu-ade and green tea that deftly balanced tang, tannins, and sweetness.