We are an experimental sea food truck
The name of our truck is YESS AQUATIC. Chef JUNYA YAMASAKI and Team YESS will be focusing on carefully sourced SoCal fish. We will serve fresh food and drinks under the theme of casual food using local ingredients.
We are waiting on the completion of our restaurant in the Arts District DTLA. It has been delayed because of the pandemic, so we've decided to open a food truck. Our intention is to use this difficult period to begin to cook for the community.
Aquatic Fanatic Chef
JUNYA YAMASAKI is renowned for his at once progressive and primitive take on Japanese cuisine. After closing his cult restaurant in London – KOYA – Junya returned to Japan for extensive Zen training. With new inspiration behind his cooking, he moved to Los Angeles. Since his arrival, one of Junya's primary challenges has been to understand the local marine life. He has now trained as a free-diver, and spends as much time in the sea as on land! At the same time, he has been working with local fishermen, teaching them "IKEJIME", traditional Japanese fisherman's technique to kill and bleed the fish with no stress. He has applied this technic to local species and developed the way to maximize their quality. Our goal is to build our own logistics so that fishermen are able to deliver the best quality local fish to customers.
Junya and his team - GILES CLARK and JACOB HIMMEL - will be cooking simple, playful food that make the most of the rich bounty of SoCal waters.
Who's making drinks?
Natural Wine and Sake Visionary
YUKIYASU KANEKO is the former Sommelier of some of the world's standard-bearing natural wine establishments such as NOMA (Copenhagen) and P Franco (London). Since joining Team YESS Yuki has been working on his drink selection for Los Angeles. Some of that time has been spent making his own wine in Oregon; and in Japan revisiting producers and building a not-yet-internationally-represented selection of natural Tea, Sake and Shochu.
For YESS Aquatic, Yuki has been working on a short revolving menu of titillating tonics that will be available by the bottle. Yuki's focus will be on healthy and refreshing original drinks using local fruits and vegetables.
Exciting network of talented independent fishermen
The menu at Yess Aquatic will be taking its lead, day-by-day, from a team of exceptionally talented and dedicated local fishermen. These fishermen have been in close collaboration with Junya to put a viable system in place. They will be using traditional and cutting-edge techniques to bring a rich variety of local, wild seafood to us in the best possible condition.
- Captain Eric Hodge (F/V Rough Draft)
- Captain Evan and Cat Jones of Ventura Fresh Fish
- Captain Bailey Raith (F/V The Swirl)
YESS Restaurant / YESS Café and Wine Bar
Rooted in tradition but with free spirit
Opening early next year, YESS Restaurant and YESS Café and Wine Bar will be led by Junya and Team YESS, and traces its root to the sense and traditions of Japan. We will not be importing ingredients or culture, but will be digging in, enjoying and expressing the land and sea we share here in southern California. Junya's approach in the restaurant is artistic – he gets to the marrow of his subjects; the results are refined, elegant and simple.
The adjacent YESS Coffee and Wine will shift the tempo and focus towards natural wines and sakes, and a more rugged and direct cooking that best accompanies them. Our purpose at YESS is to explore our own idea of what natural is, to play as nature plays.