Somehow, we'd missed Morinoya before now. Japanese hot pot right on the westside?!? Sign us up!
Turns out they don't actually specialize in it, but they do have 4 varieties on the menu. They also took what turned out to be a huge group for us surprisingly well, into a lovely space on the second floor of the Olympic Collection on Sawtelle.
The hot pots, though? Universally they seemed to be so-so. I think the vast majority of us were expecting more intense flavors, and even the kim chi hot pot didn't really deliver. The soy milk hot pot was far more subtle than expected, and the rest of the menu was just okay. Delicate and tasty, but we expected... more? Pork cutlet was an example, precisely breaded and deep fried, but the taste was just average. Miso eggplant was a little too mushy. That sort of thing.
Mass wandering of Sawtelle afterwards, to Brian's Shaved Ice, Volcano Tea, and Blockheads Shavery. Lost some of the group (Evelyn, Sonia and Gabe, Ophelia, Vi), randomly picked up Tara and Eugene (highly random!), then proceeded to play Cards Against Humanity way past midnight. *grins*