A Taste of LA: Nobu Malibu

A Taste Of | April 18, 2014 | By

Nobu drink

The first time I ate at Nobu Malibu was on a family vacation to LA when I was about 14 years old. It was at the old location, in the Cross Creek Shopping Center, a very unassuming, almost shabby looking locale from the outside. But man, I fell in love. The food is, and always has been, impeccable, and even after now living in LA for 6 years, Nobu Malibu remains my favorite LA restaurant.

Now, you may be thinking wow, out of all the unique eateries in LA you would choose Nobu, a restaurant you can find in many other cities throughout the world such as NYC, Tokyo, London and Las Vegas? Well, I am here to argue that Nobu Malibu is quite distinct, and well-worth the trip even if you are visiting from another city that touts a Nobu. Not only are there dishes that are specialties for just Malibu, but the new location, as of a few years ago, is absolutely unbeatable. Nobu moved across the street to one of the finest prime pieces of coastal land in Malibu, and you eat right above the waves. I will also argue that it is by far the best people watching (and celebrity siting) in LA…it is quite an over-the-top Hollywood scene, but it’s fun to watch.

I most recently took my brother here when he was visiting from Minneapolis, as a late birthday present. He’s a big eater like me, and he was in heaven (actually, giddy with joy is a more appropraite term, I take it the Midwest doesn’t have great Asian food). I learned something very interesting on this visit. While I tried to explain a dish to the waiter that I had had 2 weeks before with my parents but didn’t see on the menu, the waiter explained that every dish that has ever been a special is still available, off-menu! This was a total game-changer to learn that nearly half of Nobu’s food is not on the menu…the only caviat is now you have to remember what you order!

Nobu Tuna

Tuna on Crispy Rice

Nobu Malibu

22706 Pacific Coast Highway, Malibu, CA 90265

What to Order:

Drink: Lychee and Elderflower Martini, Champagne 95, Peruvian Caipirnha

Main: Tuna on Crispy Rice (not on menu), Tiradito, Mini Tacos (Malibu Special, I like the Ribeye), Rock Shrimp, and Softshell Crab Roll

Dessert: Chocolate Harumaki and Bento Box Warm Chocolate Souffle Cake

Tips: Reservations are needed, unless you go to sit at the bar, where you can still order food (although there might be an hour wait at times). If you can’t get a reservation, go on the waitlist. They call you 24 hours before your desired time, but will not leave a message so keep your phone on! I have had very good luck with the waitlist.

Nobu Tiradito

Tiradito (left) and Ribeye Mini Tacos (right)

California Rolls, Softshell Crab Rolls, and Spicy Tuna Rolls

California Rolls, Softshell Crab Rolls, and Spicy Tuna Rolls

Nobu Rock Shrimp

Rock Shrimp (left) and Chocolate Harumaki (Spring Rollss) & Chocolate Soufflé (Right)

Nobu View


  1. Leave a Reply

    Ngan R.
    April 18, 2014

    I’m smitten, Hailey! I have yet to make it to any Nobu, and your post just gave me pangs of envy and a wicked craving for some sushi. Wonderful review and glad your brother enjoyed some good Asian food on his visit!

    • Leave a Reply

      April 18, 2014

      It’s so delicious! And the scenery is really incredible, definitely worth the higher price tag for a night!

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