Tag Archives: 17th Ave

Midori sushi lunch

Happy Sushi Belly has been pretty light on the sushi in the last little while, so I’m just sharing a quick photo from Midori, where I popped in for a quick lunch last week.

I haven’t been a fan of Midori in years I’m afraid, but a friend re-recommended them recently, for speed and a good price, so I figured I’d pop in between a meeting with some friends and my walk home. I ordered two pieces of chopped scallops ($3.50 each), and an Alaska roll ($8.00). While the roll was well priced, the chopped scallops were on the high side of regular pricing – nothing special there. The scallops were tasty for sure, but the roll was pretty blah, and the rice seemed a bit undercooked.

Unfortunately… my original opinion of Midori stands – I’m not super impressed. The cost wasn’t super-affordable, and the taste/quality wasn’t especially good. I want both (great quality/taste and great price) but I’m willing to run with just one… having neither doesn’t impress me. I’m glad that I checked them out again, but I think I could have had better sushi somewhere else – there are so many other sushi places on/near 17th Avenue!

Check them out yourself

Midori Japanese Cafe

1054 17 Ave SW
Calgary, AB
T2T 0B4
(403) 244-3787

Or check out some of the other places to eat on 17th Avenue! 

Midori Japanese Cafe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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Posted by on October 10, 2015 in Downtown Calgary, South-West Calgary, Sushi


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Cibo – tapas on 17th Avenue

Five different items from Cibo's Scodellina menu

Five different items from Cibo’s Scodellina menu

I know that it’s been a very long time since I posted in Happy Sushi Belly regularly, so it might seem strange to have the same restraunt featured twice in a row… but that’s exactly what I’m doing today!

After such a nice small meal at Cibo on 17th Avenue with some friends, on my next big walk, I opted to walk from home, down to 17th Avenue, have some lunch, and then walk back again. (approximately 13 km)

My walking companion and I shared five items from Cibo’s Scodellina menu:
white gold ricotta
whipped local ricotta, currant, fennel pollen
– this was incredibly delicious -highly recommended

roasted eggplant
local goat cheese, garlic confit, sundried tomato
– quite good, though I had others I liked more

mushroom salad
grana padano, fried rosemary, capers, roasted chili
– as the eggplant, this was good, but other dishes were better

prosciutto di parma
poached pear, grana padano, aged balsamic vinegar
– really delicious – again!

salt roasted golden beets
toasted hazelnuts, local goat cheese, saba
– like my last post, this was delicious again!


(all photos from my iPhone)
Click to add a blog post for Cibo on Zomato

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Posted by on August 27, 2015 in Downtown Calgary, South-West Calgary


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Cibo – tapas on 17th Avenue

salt roasted golden beats from Cibo

salt roasted golden beets from Cibo

Not too long ago, I was meeting up with friends for a walk, and we decided to meet up for a light dinner before beginning. I don’t know 17th Avenue particularly well, so one of our group recommended Cibo – and their offering of tapas for a light meal.

I had the:

Salt-roasted golden beets

(pictured above)

toasted hazelnuts, local goat cheese, saba
– Amazingly good – highly recommended (so much so I had it later too!)

gorgonzola dolce from Cibo

gorgonzola dolce from Cibo

gorgonzola dolce

chestnut honey, spiced walnuts
– this I didn’t care for – I found the cheese too strong, and I ended up giving a fair amount of it away to one of my dining companions.

prosciutto di parma from Cibo

prosciutto di parma from Cibo

prosciutto di parma

poached pear, grana padano, aged balsamic vinegar
– Also fabulously delicious! Definitely worth trying if you like prosciutto.
Click to add a blog post for Cibo on Zomato

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Posted by on August 25, 2015 in Downtown Calgary, South-West Calgary


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Midori on 17th

Rainbow sushi roll and mushroom roll from Midori on 17th Avenue in Calgary

Rainbow sushi roll and mushroom roll from Midori on 17th Avenue in Calgary

It’s actually a bit shocking that it has taken me this long to blog about Midori, a tiny little 17th Avenue SW standard for quick sushi. After Kyoto 17 (back in the day…) it was one of my favourite places to go when I needed a sushi fix while shopping or visiting with friends when I first discovered sushi.

But… then things seemed to change. I sought out more places to dine, and when I went to Midori I found myself uninspired by their menu or disappointed in their quality. It was several years since I’d been there last; until recently when a friend and I headed there for dinner after meeting with a number of friends for coffee.

Midori is a tiny little place, and it was nearly full when we arrived, and nearly full when we finished our meal as well. The menu wasn’t overly inspiring, but I selected a rainbow roll (good, but nothing special) and a shitake mushroom roll (great flavour, but the roll was falling apart on the plate).

Two sushi rolls from Midori on 17th Avenue in Calgary

Two sushi rolls from Midori on 17th Avenue in Calgary

The food was ok, the service felt more like fast-food than dining, and the atmosphere was… fine. As much as I loved Midori years ago – I wasn’t impressed. I wasn’t disappointed either, but there just wasn’t anything that really thrilled me like it used to. Next time I’m on 17th looking for a quick after-coffee nosh, I’ll probably head to Crepes and Cravings instead… (shocking! Choosing something over sushi!)

Midori Japanese Cafe
1054 17 Ave SW
Calgary, AB T2T0B4
(403) 244-3787

Midori Japanese Cafe on Urbanspoon

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Posted by on June 15, 2014 in South-West Calgary, Sushi


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Poutine on 17th

Donair poutine

Donair poutine (iPhone photo)

Poutine isn’t exactly a staple food in my diet, though I’ve had some good stuff (hearty potatoes, plenty of cheese, flavourful gravy) and some terrible poutine too (floppy fries, runny gravy, too much salt) over the years. Even McDonalds is now serving poutine. (I haven’t tried it yet, but heard it’s more of the later than the former….) The Big Cheese on 17th Avenue has been on my ‘yeah, let’s go there some day’ list for a while, but honestly there are so many amazing places to eat on 17th Avenue, that I just didn’t get there.

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Posted by on February 13, 2014 in South-West Calgary


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Treats: Bernard Callebaut

I’ll admit, I am biased because I absolutely love chocolates from Bernard Callebaut.¬† If you’re a Calgary resident, you know all about this chocolaterie, along with all of the recent press and drama surrounding the man who founded the company.¬† Well now the company is in the hands of new owners, and I thought I’d pop in to see if any of my long-time favorites have changed with the change of ownership.

the 17th Avenue SW location

I popped into their 17th Avenue location not too long ago, and picked up a small bag of two favorites along with a new seasonal treat.  I also was brave and asked permission to take photos Рso got some decent photos for Happy Sushi Belly instead of my shy-fueled gurrilla-style iPhone photos.

Seasonal wrapping

For those of you who are new to Bernard Callebaut, you can go in and simply pick up a pre-packaged box (done in their signature copper box, or seasonally wrapped for a slightly higher price) in several sizes – or you can also make up your own box.¬† This is what I almost always do for close friends or relatives, so I can get the chocolates that I know they’ll especially like.¬† (They’ll wrap up the signature box for you as well.) You can also pick out individual, freshly-made chocolates from the display case and have them put together a small bag for you to eat on-the-go if you would prefer. Bernard Callebaut also sells ice cream treats in the summertime, shavings for hot chocolate, baking chocolate, and a few other chocolate-based treats.

Tasty and pretty!

First up – one of the summertime Fresh Fruit Creams – apparently they have been doing this for a few years now, but I must have missed it!¬† Every few weeks its a new selection – this time around it was a mango – the mango was delicious – fruity but not tart, in a little milk chocolate basket, topped off with white chocolate shavings.¬† It won’t become my next top-five (thank goodness, if it’s only offered for a few weeks a year!) but it was delicious!

the Leaf

Next up, one of my all-time favorites Рthe Leaf Рthis one is a milk chocolate, filled with milk chocolate ganache, and a black currant.  The current is like a little surprise within the chocolate -you never know where it will be hiding! Yummy!

All three chocolates!

And finally I also picked up the Canadienne truffle Рa milk chocolate shell filled with white chocolate ganache and maple syrup.  Melt-in-your-mouth goodness!

I always pick up two (erm.. at least!) of each flavor at a time – that way I can really savor it, and don’t get that “awww, is it all gone” disappointment after tasting one.

So many choices!

There were two staff people working while I was in the shop (they have way more during the holidays) and both were extremely helpful and friendly.¬† They gave me the impression of a husband-and-wife shopkeeper pair, though I have no idea if that impression was accurate or not.¬† When I told the woman about our blog (and hence my desire to take photos) we engaged in a lovely conversation about local sushi opportunities too!¬† It would seem as though they’ve kept the recipes and ingredients the same (or at least no noticeable differences) which is fantastic – when the shop was in danger of closing, I know many people were worried about the lack of their favorite go-to gift-giving resource if nothing else!

To be a bit self-indulgent – if you’re ever thinking of getting ME some chocolates, here are my favorites, in no particular order

  • Canadienne truffles
  • Leaf chocolates
  • Sambucca chocolates
  • Manon chocolates
  • Ginger Milk chocolates
  • Honey chocolates
  • Cinnamon Ginger chocolate (which, if I was ordering the list, would come lower down I’ll admit..)
  • … and I also love the raspberry milk chocolate hearts that come out at Valentines day!

One of my favorites!

If you’re looking for a new favorite, Michael has a chocolate-by-chocolate review of one of the copper boxes in Chocablog.¬† (Though clearly I like the sweet chocolates more than he does!)


So, what about you Рis Bernard Callebaut your favorite chocolate in Calgary Рor do you have a preference for something even better?  Let us know in the comments below!

You can find Bernard Callebaut stores all over Alberta, with additional stores across Canada and even a few US locations.  The shop I visited was at:

847 – 17 Avenue SW
Calgary, Alberta

Bernard Callebaut on Urbanspoon

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Posted by on June 20, 2011 in South-West Calgary, Treats


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Sushi: Fuji Yama

Overall, I wasn’t terribly impressed with Fuji Yama’s 17th Avenue SW location.¬† Not to say that it was bad – it just wasn’t ‘good’ either.¬† If you’re in the area there are a few other sushi places within a 20 minute walk that I would recommend instead.

The Devinish building

I was running early to visit a friend, so decided to pop into Fuji Yama’s 17th Avenue SW location.¬† The restaurant is located in the former home of Kyoto 17, which holds fond memories; being the first place I ever tasted sushi.

The location has been significantly redecorated, removing the levels, (along with the cute little private booths that I love for small group gatherings) and opening up the space considerably.  In the center is still the sushi bar (where the chef prepares the sushi), and down the hall there is still the bar/ lounge.  I was seated against a wall though, and although the space felt more open and airy, where I was sitting was still rather dark.

I ordered a Grasshopper roll, which is one of their weekly specials (sort of- you can get them on the pencil- in menu each day for the same price…) along with pieces of my two favorites; special scallop battleship and Ikura (salmon roe) battleships.¬† The Grasshopper roll features scallop, mango, avocado, cucumber, red tobiko (flying fish roe), mentaiko (pollock roe, which I don’t think I’ve ever had before), and mayonnaise.

Grasshopper roll - not very tasty, but definitly pretty!

The Grasshopper roll, well, it wasn’t good in my opinion.¬† Don’t get me wrong, it was prepared well; the mango was soft and flavorful, the rice was firm, and the avocado was perfect too- but somehow it all didn’t come together well. There was also a flavor that at times was tart or sour, or maybe spicy, that didn’t work for me; the waitress later told me that it was a Cajun spice that I was tasting.¬† With the mellow rice, avocado and scallop, it wasn’t flavorful enough to enhance the roll but instead was distracting.¬† The cucumber shared that mellow flavor, but had a crunch that I didn’t find appealing in this particular roll.¬† The mayonnaise was drizzled artfully over the top, but really just tasted like mayo – it didn’t accentuate the roll at all.¬† If you decide to try this roll, I would suggest it’s better without the soya sauce.

I think that if the menu had indicated the ‘Cajun spice’ in the Grasshopper roll I would have skipped this one to begin with.¬† The overall effect was an attempt at sushi-fusion, but ended up just being disappointing.


The Ikura was just… Ok.¬† I was expecting bright, shimmering jewels, eggs that were firm but popped in my mouth with bursts of salty flavor, but instead the eggs were dull¬† and somewhat soft.¬† There was just the tiniest hint of cloudiness on some of them, leading me to believe they may not have been as fresh as I am accustomed to.¬† Again, there was nothing ~wrong~ with my Ikura – the battleship was well balanced (I know some places fill them up with rice and only put a thin layer of roe on top) and firm enough to not fall apart (though the eggs might have been ‘packed’ in more firmly), and the rice was nice – but overall it was underwhelming.

Special Scallop

The special scallop battleship sushi was definitely the best selection.¬† The scallop was smooth – firm without being chewy, and there was just enough tobiko and mayonnaise to blend it all together.¬† My only ‘complaint’ would be that it looked so … blah.¬† Perhaps it was just bad lighting (I was up against the dark wall) or the colour of the tobiko was so pale, but it didn’t look nearly as good as it tasted.

Overall, I found the portion sizes a bit small for the cost of the individual roll and battleship-style sushi pieces.¬† The costs were on par with what I’d pay elsewhere, but the portion sizes were a little bit smaller.¬† What I think should have cost about 20$, was 31$ with tax and tip.¬† According to UrbanSpoon posts, there is a Dealfind coupon, which although requires a coupon, might have improved upon the price.

However the service was prompt, helpful, attentive, and friendly.  When I was in there it was 5 or 5:30 on a Wednesday evening, and I was one of only two tables (that I could see) dining.  Blogger Food Mamma also appreciated the good service Рyou can read more on her blog!

One nice thing about Fuji Yama – they’re one of the few sushi places that actually has a decent online presence, along with a partial menu.¬† Click this link to see their menu.¬†

Visit Fuji Yama in the basement of the Devinish building (enter through the back)
908 17 Avenue SW
Tel: (403) 245-3854 Fax: (403) 245-3852

Fuji Yama on Urbanspoon


Posted by on June 18, 2011 in South-West Calgary, Sushi


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