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Josh Espinosa | Sampa

Tell us about your restaurant…. Brief backstory of how and why you wanted to start a restaurant/food business? What kind of food do you serve? What is your restaurant “known” for?

Sampa is a Filipino-American restaurant located in Downtown LA. We started Sampa during the quarantine by cooking from my apartment. We started growing as a business during the apartment era and decided to move into a bigger space. I wanted to start this business to showcase the Filipino culture. At Sampa, we serve elevated fusion foods inspired by being American raised in different cultures. Our restaurant is known for its unique dishes like our Kare Kare Tamales, Sinigang Xiao Long Bao, Pasta Palabok, & Octopus Adobo.

What is unique about your restaurant?

What makes our restaurant unique is our food, vibe, & lifestyle.

What is most important to you in a restaurant?

Our guests are the most important to us. It’s because from their love and support we keep going!

What was your mission at the start of your restaurant?

The mission of the restaurant is to tell my story of growing up as a Filipino-American. That Filipino food can be beautiful too.

What does “hospitality” mean to you?

Hospitality means for us creating a welcoming environment and treating everyone like family.

What would you tell someone looking to start a restaurant of their own?

Focus on your craft, believe in yourself, have confidence, & block out the noise. You can do it.

Which qualities do you look for in new employees?

The qualities I look for in employees are if they match our vibe. Hungry to learn and willing to listen.

Where do you see yourself & your restaurant in five years?

In 5 years, I see myself establishing our presence here in Los Angeles. Sampa will have another restaurant in New York.


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