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Author Archives: conniemychau76

About conniemychau76

A creative artist in many ways: Oil painting, making jewelry, writing poetry, scrapbooking, card making, & photography.

Sushi Izumi

Izumi. In Japanese, this means ‘spring’, source of water. It is also commonly used as a given Japanese name, family name, and place name. Although, it is used as a unisex name, it is more feminine. I find it quite pretty, in that sense. (Oh, and of course I noticed, the staff were all women! Ha, go us women!! Ooops, sorry about that outburst)

This is actually located in a food court, in the shopping centre, named Metrotown, in Burnaby, British Columbia. I had decided to fly down to Vancouver, one weekend, back in August, for the Michael Jackson Immortal Tour, with the Cirque du Soleil. And what better way, to incorporate some sushi in my diet! But hey, when do I really need an excuse to consume some delicious sushi, hahaha!! ;D

So, I decided to order a Negitoro roll, (tuna & green onions with rice & nori, not one of Dawn’s favorites, as she is not a fan of green onions!) along with one of their given combos. This consisted a mini California roll, and the standard pieces of Nigiri sushi. (tuna, salmon, shrimp, and yellowtail) It was quite scrumptious, even being served from a food court. Of course, I do believe, since I was on the West Coast, I wasn’t that surprised about the quality, as it is closer to the ocean, than Alberta!

Therefore, if you are ever in the Burnaby area of Vancouver, and feeling like you need a burst of energy, from all your hard work at shopping, Izumi Sushi, might become a mini stop for you, for some quick & delicious sushi. Just try not to forget, to let us know what your thoughts are!

Izumi Sushi
Metrotown Food Court
4820 Kingsway
Burnaby, British Columbia
1-604-439-8880

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Posted by on November 14, 2012 in Out of town - BC

 

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Momoyama Sushi

Momoyama. It is a name, from 500 years ago, in the Japanese era. It is also the original name for Kokeshi wooden dolls, with simplified bodies, which are also traditional craftworks in Japan. When I researched this name, I found it quite interesting!

Yes, I am finally posting about my beloved favorite sushi restaurant! Figure it would be a nice change, as I have been posting about sushi places, which are out of town. Momoyama is located in the Glamorgan Shopping Plaza, in southwest Calgary. It is a tiny hole-in-the-wall place, but has by far, the freshest tastiest sushi in town. it is usually quite busy, reservations of party of two or more, is highly recommended. On that note though, I was surprised, it wasn’t packed this past Saturday. With that being said, it was quite late in the day for lunch. By the time I had finished getting my flu shot, at my doctor’s office, down the street, it was already 1/15pm. Of course, I had to invite Dawn on this impromptu, last-minute late sushi lunch date!

Last time, we visited Momoyama, we had ordered the appetizer, Agedashi Tofu. I have had it many times, as it is one of my mom’s favorite dishes. However, it was Dawn’s first time trying it. She enjoyed it so much, we decided to order it once again. We then proceeded to order our favorite sushi. She ordered Tuna Sashimi, while I had the Tuna & Salmon Sashimi combo. Then of course, I ordered two pieces of Saba, (Mackeral, my favorite!) and a piece of Tamago. (sweetened egg omelette, which I classify as my dessert sushi, and always eaten last, lol) I was going to also order the Negitoro roll, but wasn’t hungry enough to this time. That’s fatty tuna with green onions, rolled with rice, and the Nori (seaweed) on the outside. Dawn ordered her favorites: two pieces of the Special Scallop, and two pieces of the Ikura. Both in battle ship style sushi. Everything tasted perfect. Fresh, scrumptious, tasty, and best of all, satisfying, especially with great company! (:

I highly recommend this sushi spot. The food is fresh, service is friendly, and atmosphere is fun. The sushi chef always greets you, when you walk in the door. And always thanks you, when you leave. Prices are pretty good as well. Very comparable to many other sushi joints. So, the next time you are in the area, why not consume some delicious sushi at Momoyama, and then bringing home some tasty cheese buns, from the Glamorgan Bakery as well! To me, that is the perfect day altogether. Just don’t forget to share your experience with us!

Momoyama Sushi
3919 Richmond Road SW
Calgary, AB T3E 4T6
403-233-0995

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Posted by on November 4, 2012 in South-West Calgary, Sushi

 

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Sushiyama

Sushiyama. Excellent fresh sushi, without costing you an arm & a leg. As I had mentioned in a previous post, regarding Izumi Sushi, I was in Vancouver, for the Michael Jackson Immortal Tour with Cirque du Soleil, back in August, and had also decided to catch up with an old friend of mine. We hadn’t seen each other for twelve years or so! Crazy how time does fly by. Naturally, I suggested sushi. There were no objections there. Hooray! So, he took me to his favorite sushi restaurant. It happened to be located in Burnaby, on Kingsway, not too far from where my hotel was. Well, walking-wise, it would’ve been too far, but he came to pick me in his car, much quicker. And off we go, to fill our bellies with yummy sushi! (-:

As we drove up, I noticed parking is at the back of the building. Upon entering the restaurant, I did notice how bright, open, & clean it was. Good sign thus far. We were seated immediately, and given menus. I was impressed to see many different sushi items, I had never tried before. But of course, I always
have to order a few of my favorites!

For appetizers, we ordered the Agedashi Tofu and Gyoza. For me, the tofu is always a delight. However, the gyozas were deep fried, versus pan fried. Deep dried is not my method by choice at all. Therefore, they were too oily. Flavour-wise though, wasn’t bad.

We then followed the appetizers, with an order of Assorted Sashimi and Saba. (mackerel, my favorite!) Both items were beyond fresh, and tasted delicious. The pieces of Saba were gigantic, so juicy, the flavour just burst in my mouth!

After that, we ordered three different rolls. Oh yes, how can you tell we were quite hungry! Lol. There was the Caterpillar, Dungeness Crab, and Deep fried Chef’s Special roll. The Caterpillar roll was very good, lots of advocado. Yum! The Dungeness Crab roll was tasty as well. And I know how I just mentioned, deep fried, is not my favorite, however, when it comes to rolls, I do not mind it at all. It adds a different texture to the roll, a crispy effect.

Yes, it was a huge meal! And it all was very fresh. This is what I love about Vancouver, is fresh & inexpensive sushi. Actually, the farther one travels, on the west coast, the more fresh sushi is available. Definitely a Happy Sushi Belly for me! (:

You might be wondering about what the bill came to. I had no idea, as my friend picked the tab up! Lucky me. But all I can remember, from looking at the menu, is that it wasn’t very costly at all.

So, if you are ever in the Vancouver area, Sushiyama is a must-visit. It will be worth your trip, out to Burnaby, whether you are driving, or taking the sky train. The service was fast & friendly. How could you say no to that? And once you have tried such fresh sushi, please let us know what your thoughts are!

Sushiyama
371 East Broadway
Vancouver, British Columbia
V5T 3M7

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Posted by on October 30, 2012 in Out of town - BC, Sushi

 

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Chaya

Chaya. In Japanese, this means ‘life’. And with the name of this adorable, hole-in-the-wall Japanese restaurant, in Banff, it is a delight, every time I visit! A long-time friend of mine, who lives in Banff, had first introduced me, to this little place. (:

The last time I visited, was last weekend. I had friends from out east, visiting from Mahone Bay, In Nova Scotia. So, of course, I decided to introduce them to this lovely little spot, for some Japanese cuisine. It is not your typical Japanese restaurant, or Sushi Bar. Instead, it serves as both a tiny restaurant and take-out place. Now I know that may not sound promising, however; you will find yourself impressed with this place! (;

Once you arrive, you either stand just inside the door, or walk right up to the back counter. Most times, I end up near the door, where the lovely waitresses will hand you a menu. Once you have decided on your meal, you approach the counter to place your order. At this counter, there is a small fridge, which contains several different types of sushi rolls. The gyoza is also in there. From there, you can peek into their tiny kitchen area. It really is adorable, with their little curtains. The atmosphere in the restaurant is quite quaint, and friendly. The counter also offers iced water, chopsticks, & condiments. Once you place your order & have paid, you find yourself a table, and the food is brought to you, by the friendly waitresses.

Last weekend, I had gyoza, a tuna roll, (wrapped in rice, not the Nori, which is the seaweed) and a wonton soup. Both my friends had ordered the Pork Katsu. The meal was warm and delicious, especially when consumed with great company, in such a cozy environment. Makes you feel right at home. Plus, the bill only came to an approximate total of $40.00. Not bad at all! (:

But of course, I was so busy catching up with my friends, as I hadn’t seen them for almost five years, I forgot to take photos! I know, how could I forget? But no worries, I am planning to visit Banff fairly soon, in the near future, and will post photos then.

Therefore, if you are looking for a quick and diverse Japanese meal in Banff, Chaya offers a wide range of Japanese foods, at a modest price & environment. I find myself wishing there was a place like this in Calgary. Or perhaps there is, and some of you out there, could inform me about it!

So, if you are in Banff, and looking for a decent, warm meal, Chaya would be a more healthy choice, versus the go-to fast food restaurants in town! Let us know what you think!!

Chaya
118 Banff Avenue
Banff, Alberta
403-760-0882

 

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Sho Sushi Bar & Kitchen

So, I do believe it was around the month of May, that I had driven by a new building on Macleod Trail in South Calgary, where I noticed what would become a new restaurant! Yay!! Out of curiosity and of course, my sheer love for sushi, I went home to locate their contact number online. Upon contacting them, I was informed they would not be open, until the month of August. I crossed my fingers, and hoped it would be well worth the wait!

On several occasions, I almost ended up dining there. However, it did not occur until one lovely Sunday evening, after a day filled with Scrapbooking. Dawn & I, our morning had started out with some dim sum in Chinatown, at the Regency Palace in Dragon City Mall. My sister & my two, almost three year old nephew, joined us. Least to say, young children are very busy! Good thing my niece, Charlotte wasn’t there, as it would’ve been more difficult to keep track of them both.

Okay, apologies for becoming side tracked. Anyway, after a long & productive afternoon Scrapbooking, Dawn & I, naturally decided sushi for dinner at this new Sho Sushi Bar & Kitchen, would be a great idea. We arrived at the restaurant, about 7pm. It wasn’t super busy, but yet it wasn’t dead either. Good sign. Upon being seated, I noticed the hostess was rummaging under the front counter. To my surprise, her hands resurfaced with a long dish, separated into three sections, filled with snacks, for while we look through their menu. I thought that was a good idea, different, as I had never experienced this at any other sushi restaurant. The dish was filled with a pickled cabbage mixture, which was slightly spicy, pieces of lightly salted dried seaweed, and a mix of seasoned peanuts with little dried fish. I loved the dried seaweed, didn’t mind the peanut/dried fish mixture, but did not care for the pickled cabbage. It reminded me of the Korean Kimchi, to which I am not a huge fan. Also upon being seated, the hostess called out a Japanese greeting to the sushi chefs, and they replied to her with the same. Just don’t ask me, what it meant, ha! But at least it sounded very upbeat and friendly. I had also noticed, once we were seated, the hostess called the greeting out again, for the next guests, but she never got a reply from the sushi chefs. I am presuming, they were either too busy to reply, or simply did not hear her. Oh well…

Now, onwards to what I thought about the sushi. First off, I was not very impressed with the menu. It was quite contemporary, and nothing like the traditional sushi menu, I am used to. There seemed to be few items I recognized, including the fact, they did not have my favorite fish, which is the Saba. (mackerel) *sigh* They did have some different variety of rolls, which sounded interested. One of those, I decided to try, and was called: Gold mountain, or something to that effect. I am so terrible with names! Ha!! The reason to why I decided to order this particular roll, is because the outside rice is rolled in this crackly textured rice, which resembled tiny balls. Inside the roll, consisted of mushroom and advocado, topped with spicy tuna and gold masago. It tasted good, except the crackly rice kept on getting stuck in my teeth, and tasted a tad sweet. I did not favour that, but the rest of the roll was good. Because of the crackly rice, and even though it looked pretty, I would not order this roll again. I also ordered a tuna sashimi, which was excellent. Quite fresh. Then just a Nigiri sushi in both the scallop and salmon. The scallops were very small, but tasted good. The salmon was mediocre. I’ve had better. But we have noticed as of lates, that the tuna has been tasting better than the salmon. Interesting! Dawn wasn’t in the mood for rolls, and so she also ordered a tuna sashimi, her favorite chopped scallops, and the salmon roe, battle ship style. She enjoyed the tuna sashimi the best. We did not order anything else, as nothing else had appealed to us.

The service was good. Our server was attentive enough, to fill our water glasses, and was available when we had questions about the menu. But other than that, he pretty much left us to enjoy our meal.

Since the building is so tall, the washrooms are located upstairs. Upon visiting the washroom, I noticed there was a bar/lounge up there as well. Seemed more low key, than the restaurant atmosphere downstairs. More quiet. I can see that area, either being used for couples on dates, or more private/group events, like birthday parties, etc.

I did notice, the restaurant was very clean. Some other customers has ordered dished on a hot plate. We smelt the fuel from that, which wasn’t very appetizing. But thank goodness, we had already finished dining. Upon finishing our meal, we were offered the dessert menu, & served frozen grapes on a stick. We passed on dessert and ate our grapes instead.

All in all, my dining experience in this restaurant was alright. Nothing spectacular, but nothing terrible either. If anything, I think their location serves them well, as they are located right close to Chinook Shopping Mall, and on a busy street. They do have competition across the street though, with Kinjo Floating Sushi Bar. So, we shall see how well they do. They have only been open for a couple of weeks after all. I am not sure whether I’d visit again, but it wasn’t that terrible, that I wouldn’t. If you are in meighbourhood, try Sho out, and let us know what you think! It definitely was a different, not conventional or traditional sushi restaurant. And if that is what you are looking for, then it might become one of your favorite sushi hang outs. Another note, prices were fairly reasonable. My portion of the bill came to $25.00, including the tip. Not bad at all! And yet another side note, this restaurant seems great and affordable for lunch-goers, in the surrounding area. But for night time dining, you be the judge.

Sho Sushi Bar & Kitchen
7212 Macleod Trail South
Calgary, AB

Ph: (403) 252-5199

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Posted by on August 11, 2012 in Sushi

 

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Sushi Boat

Earlier this month of April, Dawn and I had planned, to head out to Banff, for a weekend, filled with the Hot Springs, Banff Tea Company, and lots of sushi. However, it did not pan out, due to the Kelly Ripa show, being filmed there, on that very same weekend. We had heard, that everything was booked months ahead of time. This included hotels, (even though we had not planned to stay overnight, but still!) restaurants, and of course, the Hot Springs. Therefore, if one had not made any reservations, there was no way we’d get in anywhere. Crazy!!!

Well, despite the disappointing fact that our lil weekend in Banff did not happen, we were determined to consume some yummy sushi. Nothing can get in our way of that! (except for the fact of certain restaurants not being opened, etc.) We found ourselves driving up to the Sushi Boat, in Crowfoot. I had heard many general reviews, of it being a fabulous sushi spot, either on the internet or from friends, who had visited in the past.

When we arrived, we figured their waiting system out. There was a pad of paper at the front desk/cashier, where one could choose whether you’d like to sit at the floating sushi bar, or a booth, and for how many guests. We immediately chose the booth for two. The wait was approximately 10 minutes. Not bad at all, considering it was lunchtime, on a Saturday, and it was bustling in there. Once seated, we were given menus, which explained the cost of each dish. This was categorized via plate colour. Fairly simple to comprehend. We also asked for two glasses of water, as we always find ourselves thirsty, from the sodium intake of soya sauce! A side note, I noticed they were quite well-staffed. and were also attentive. (ie: filling our water glasses, and seeing whether we wished to order dishes, that may not have been generated on the floating sushi boats as of yet)

Upon observation of the sushi chefs, I was fascinated to notice, two machines present. One dispensed the molded pieces of rice for Nigir Sushi. So neat! And the other one enabled the chefs to insert a piece of seaweed into a tray, which already had rice laid out in it. I saw a chef fill the machine with rice from the top. Such time-saving mechanisms. Wonder where one would purchase those machines. Most likely for a hefty cost!

 

Other than consuming our usual favorites, like the salmon, saba, ikura, and special scallop; we also managed to try a couple of different types. The first one was the size of what a Chef’s roll would be. (big, wide roll, one which is impossible to fit into your mouth, safely in one go) It was filled with salmon and advocado. The neat thing was, it had been deep fried in tempura batter, and served with the orange hot sauce. It was amazingly delicious! The second one, if I recall correctly, we thought would either be preserved turnip or marinated mushrooms, turned out to be something else. If Dawn remembers, I’m sure she will mention what it actually was. I knew I should’ve saved notes in my phone, ha! There was also another roll, near the end of our meal, that we had wanted to try. But we were just too full. I had also consumed the Chef’s roll, but the one filled with tempura shrimp and advocado. Dawn didn’t have that one, as she is not a huge fan of shrimp. And of course, I ended my meal, with what I deem as my ‘dessert sushi’. Yes, the Tamago! It was light and fluffy, but cut a little too thick for my liking. Nonetheless, it was a good wrap to our sushi experience at the Sushi Boat!   

All in all, our lunch wasn’t bad, but for the location of the restaurant, I wouldn’t make a special trip. However, if I happened to be in the area, I wouldn’t mind eating there again. The sushi wasn’t terrible, but the atmosphere is not my type. I am one which prefers more of a restaurant, then the floating sushi bar. With that being said, Sushi Boat was very clean, and the service was friendly enough. My bill came to approximately $25.00, and that is including the tip already. Not bad at all, considering the fact, that we had about 6-8 plates of sushi each. The plates ranged from $2.00 to $3.50 each. So, off we went to Bernard Callebault, after a Happy Sushi Belly! If you are ever in the area, and have an opportunity to try the Sushi Boat out, please let us know of your experience, by commenting to my post. Thank-you for reading my second sushi post! Ps- Please do not mind my terrible editing job. Seemed much easier to add photos via mobile, than on my laptop. Imagine that. Well, guess with more practice, I’ll be better at this whole WordPress idea (:

Sushi Boat

#806 Crowfoot Crescent, NW

Clagary, AB   T3G 4S3

(403) 239-1818

 
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Posted by on May 1, 2012 in North-West Calgary, Sushi

 

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Misato Sushi

Hello to all the sushi lovers out there! Yes, I know, it is Connie, & I am finally posting on this blog. Hope you find my sushi insights useful, on your next sushi adventure!
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Well, what turned out to be a beautiful Sunday, weather-wise; turned out even better! A few weeks ago, Dawn & I had wanted to go snowshoeing/hiking in Kananaskis. However, that didn’t quite happen, as there was a cougar on the loose. Therefore, we decided upon some inner-city walking instead. After almost two hours of walking in Bowness Park, we had worked up quite an appetite. And of course, we decided on sushi for dinner. After some quick research on our phones, we found Misato Sushi, which is located up in the Westhills area. Of course, they wouldn’t be open for dinner until 5pm. So we drove up anyways, & discovered their doors were open. We poked our heads in, & was seated immediately, which was nice, as it was only 4/45pm. Although, our waitress did ask for us to give them a few minutes, as they technically was not open yet! This worked out anyways. Gave us the opportunity to review their menu & such.

We promptly decided on the Tuna & Salmon Sashimi, as the appetizer. Normally, we would have gone with the gyozas, but it wasn’t in our moods today. Every single time we order this dish, there is always the decision, of whether the tuna or salmon tastes better. In this case, the tuna was better! Yummy!!

Next, we decided to split a couple of rolls. First one was the Rocky Roll. It was delicious! Smoked tuna, yes, you read correctly, was on the outside of the roll, along with more tuna & advoado. There was also chopped green onion, rolled with the tuna. Which worked for Dawn, as she is not a huge fan of those. Too bad, because I love them. I did get a taste in one bite though.

The second roll was called the Mantanga Roll. Inside was filled with both advocado and Japanese mushroom. The flavour was delightful! We couldn’t figure out, whether the mushrooms were marinated beforehand or not. Nonetheless, I would definitely order that one again. Another side note, the mushrooms reminded me of Chinese ones, I’ve tasted before.

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Next up, we ordered a few pieces of our favorites. Dawn, of course ordered the Ikura and Special Scallop. As soon as they arrived at our table, I was impressed, by how full the battleships were!

As I hope to post more often, you will find that Saba, which is the Mackeral, is indeed my favorite. So I ordered that, and an old-time ‘dessert-like’ sushi, which is the Tamago. The Saba was okay, not as flavourful and juicy, the way I like it. Colours on the skin was beautiful though. I think it had something to do with the way it was sliced/prepared. The Tamago, on the otherhand, was good. Came cut very thick, but very nice & fluffy. Only thing was, it was slightly too sweet for me. Still not bad at all though!

The service was pretty good. For example, we never had an empty glass, when it came to H2O. Our waitress also checked on us periodically. And of course, a couple times while my mouth was full. I swear, they’re trained to do that, just so you can’t respond with a not-so-nice comment, lol!
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When the bill arrived, we clearly saw it cost more than what we normally pay for. Well, we actually had already noticed, while looking at the menu. For example, my Saba costs $3.25 today, whereas I usually pay around $2.75. Not a huge difference, but still! Total bill came to approximately $70.00. With pretty much the same amount of sushi, we order each time, it was about $20.00 more. Regardless, of the costs, we quite enjoyed our meal. And I would like to think, I’d visit Misato again, if I am in the area. This was actually my second time, & I remember enjoying it the first time around as well!

To make a long story short, no pun intended for Dawn, lol…if you happen to be in the neighbourhood, check this place out!

Thanks to all, for reading my long awaited first post (:

Misato Sushi
1851 Sirocco Drive, SW
Calgary, Alberta
(403) 217-3000

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Posted by on March 18, 2012 in South-West Calgary, Sushi

 

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