New favourite sushi place in downtown.
Vancouver has inevitably become a giant sushi hub. EVERYWHERE you go there are a bajillion sushi places..and its continues to exponentially grow. I’m sometimes a little tired of having the same old same old every time. I love sushi, I do, but the Vancouver style sushi, with giant rolls topped with numerous unidentifiable ingredients soaked with sauce after sauce, is pretty sickening. It also turns the supposedly healthy cuisine into a none healthy one, like the las vegas roll stuffed with cream cheese and then deep fried, or the dragon rolls swimming in a pool of mayo and barbeque sauce or some sort.
This trend does not hold the true essence of sushi anymore; which is dishes of simple fresh ingredients paired with rice and nori.
Moving on, last sunday after a good sweat from walking a charity event, I was quite hungry but was not up for any ‘heavy’ cuisines. I remembered a friend of mine raving about a sushi place near his home (lucky guy), right in the heart of downtown. Starving but determined, I made my way across downtown Vancouver and hit up Shizen Ya, a snug restaurant with limited seating tucked 2 blocks away from robson street.
My companion that day and I was immediately impressed by the healthy selection of sushi available to us. Shizen Ya took the health aspect to another level, mixing Japanese culture and health-craze Vancouver culture, providing organic and fresh ingredients, house-made sauces, and brown rice option for all their dishes. Choices like tempeh roll, quinoa hand cone, and whole wheat tempura were only some of the surprising and new dishes that they offered.
Everything tasted yummy, especially the sakura blossom roll which is fresh crab with albacore tuna, organic avocado, cucumber wrapped in organic brown rice wrapped with smoked sockeye salmon paired with creamy maple dressing. So satisfying and delicious!
My companion ordered the ocean quartet salad and dynamite roll, which he felt were both overall delicious. The only thing he said he would change though was that there was a bit too much dressing in the salad. So if you aren’t a fan of that, ask for it on the side!
I was also feeling adventurous and ordered a quinoa vegetable cone, which tasted alright. Nothing out of this world as expected since it was basically vegetables and quinoa wrapped with soy paper. It was a good choice to get more veggies in my belly though!
If I was in downtown and feeling like a sushi meal again, I will be back to Shizen Ya. It isn’t your average dirt cheap, big portion sushi though. I did feel like I got what I paid for; good quality good portion size Japanese healthified food.
985 Hornby St, Vancouver, BC