Coco’s and I have a long and interesting history. A few years ago, I lived in Japan and a Coco’s was attached to my building. Coco’s (pronounced Cocosu in Japanese) was a Japanese attempt at American food and despite the fact that it wasn’t at all like American food, it was still pretty decent. We had a healthy relationship and I even had the frequent diner card. When I returned from Japan, Coco’s and I took a break, we couldn’t handle the distance and I had no knowledge of Coco’s in America. That all changed when I found a Coco’s on Pico and Robertson in LA. I went in with great expectations that would be impossible to meet.
They had both a seasonal menu and a traditional menu. I made my choice of the Angus Top Sirloin Steak from the traditional one. I ordered it medium and saw that it came with a baked potato and seasonal vegetables, so I asked for some fruit instead of the veggies. While waiting for my meal, I pondered the concept of seasonal vegetables. I find the idea of seasonal vegetables to be both disconcerting and unreliable. One of the many beauties of meat is it’s consistency. With one notable exception, there is no season for meat. Meat is for all seasons and, unlike vegetables that may disappear for 10 months at a time, you can count on it to be there for you need it.
My steak soon arrived in a strange triangular-esque shape that was much thicker on one end than the other. Typically, this is not a good sign, since it is hard to cook meat evenly when it varies in thickness. Coco’s had not been able to solve this conundrum, for as I chomped through the thinner half, I found the steak to be cooked perfectly medium. I had to add A1 Steak Sauce for flavor, but I had no gripes about that. Unfortunately, though, when I got to the thick end, it was borderline rare and impossible to bite through. There was no point in sending it back to be cooked more at this point, so I filled the rest of my stomach with baked potato and fruit.
In Japan, Coco’s was welcome as an escape from Japanese food, but I found that in America, they are just another generic restaurant with mildly decent food. There are too many options in LA for better American food to allow Coco’s to fill up a dinner. Perhaps it would be better for breakfast or a late-night snack.