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A Great New Sushi Restaurant on Eglinton near Allen Road

Sado Sushi has recently opened on Eglinton Ave. between Bathurst and Allen. I was thrilled when I found prior to eating there that it is owned by the same people as my favourite Japanese restaurant in Montreal, Atami.

My family ate there last weekend and I'm happy to say that the menu is exactly the same as in Montreal, and the food is just as good. This isn't your usual Japanese fare - it's a notch above. You must try some of the chef's specials, which are listed and described on a paper separate from the menu.

The fish is glisteningly fresh, the dishes quite original in their execution. The service was impeccable, although the food was a bit slow in coming, which our server apologized for and made up for with complimentary miso soup and two incredibly delicious desserts.

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  1. Olivergail, thank you for posting this review. I just finished some very mediocre (if you could call it that) take out sushi from Tokyo Sushi down the street.

    Does Sado do take out as well or just eat in?

    1 Reply
    1. re: rbc

      We just went back there again for dinner tonight. It was as good as last time, if not better. The service was amazing and the kitchen and sushi chefs were getting the food to the tables much more quickly.
      I have seen people coming in to pick up take-out orders.

    2. Ben Reiner and I have decided that before posting to the board, we will visit a restaurant twice in order to give it a fair review. And so, we waited just a mere 7 days before returning to Sado Sushi.
      I was excited to try it the first time because, as a former Montrealer who always ate at both Atami and Maiko (two of the three brothers own those), I felt a little nostalgic about some of my favorite rolls (the Atami roll, for one...with shrimp and green pepper tempura). However, since moving to Toronto 4 years ago, both of those restaurants have undergone a complete transformation, with a whole menu of specialties that I was not aware of before.
      And finally, we Torontonians get the privilege of the third brother's Japanese delicacies at his new restaurant Sado Sushi.

      So, when you go to Sado Sushi, you have a few choices on the menu. If you like your standard sushi, sashimi, and maki, you can select from the wide variety of fresh fish. Or, if you aren't a fish eater, you can always fill up on the piping hot sirloin or chicken teriyaki, that comes sizzling to your table on a hot stone plate...and brings with it, a delicious sweet aroma. Third, (this is what we did both times), is order omakaze - just write down how much you want to spend per person (you'll be full at about $35-40/person) and the chef will prepare you plates like faux crab salad on a crispy rice cake, grilled tuna tataki with a peppercorn crust, tuna cambozola sushi pizza, grilled chilean sea bass, and lobster roll.
      For dessert (yup, we made room), we shared the chef's delight, a deep fried pancake wrapped around ice cream drizzled with maple syrop.
      It's located on Eglinton, just west of Bathurst. It's certainly a must!

      1. The best sushi and maki, and the most inventive specialties we've had in Toronto! We've been there twice, and have no desire to go anywhere else.

        1 Reply
        1. The fish is really fresh, the sushi rice is not too sweet or vinegary, the specialties of the house are really well thought out and executed. One of the specialties incorporates tuna and cambozola cheese - a strange-sounding, but absolutely delicious, burst of flavours.

          All of the dishes we've sampled have flavours that are well-balanced and are texturally interesting. Such simple items as miso soup and house salad are prepared with tastier components than those in other neighbourhood sushi restaurants. Although I'm not usually a fan of chicken teriyaki, my daughter has ordered it on both occasions, and this one I like! The sauce is not cloyingly thick and sweet like in most places.

          We've also had the fried ice cream, and it is to faint over.

          1 Reply
          1. re: FlavoursGal

            Thanks. I will have to try it for sure although I cannot imagine the cheese. Japango is my favourite - cant imagine anything better.

          2. Do you have the address or phone number for this place?

            2 Replies
            1. re: Trice

              Here you go, Trice.

              Sado Sushi
              1116 Eglinton Avenue West
              Toronto, ON M6C 2E2
              (416) 783-8111

              1. re: FlavoursGal

                Thanks!!!! I'll be sure to go this weekend!

            2. Just tried Sado Sushi tonight, and loved it. It is way beyond a typical sushi place. The presentations are stunningly creative. I went by myself, so I was limited in what I could try, but looking forward to my next visit. (Plus am thrilled to have a cool place like this in the Bathurst & Eg area.) The chef's specialties are the thing to try because they're something different; but hamachi sashimi was delicious and beautifully presented too; it is fun to see other diners' gleeful faces as the servers present the platters. In a word: delightful.

              1 Reply
              1. re: MichelinStarChaser

                Isn't it incredible? I'm thrilled that you loved it, too. You're right about it being "way beyond a typical sushi place." I've been to Atami (same owners) in Montreal, and always lamented the fact that we had nothing like it in Toronto. Imagine my delight when I walked into Sado Sushi for the first time and realized that the same food was now available, practically on my doorstep!

                This restaurant is definitely a keeper!

              2. MichelinStarChaser, you got my mouth watering last night. Just had to have my fix of Sado Sushi tonight.

                I went with my teenaged daughter and had another glorious meal. She had her favourites: the "Volcano", which consists of a crab and flavoured-mayo mixture mounded atop a round of fried sweet potato cake; the Spider Roll, an excellent fried soft shell crab maki roll; and the Teriyaki, this time the beef (a huge portion of perfectly cooked, juicy and tender sirloin), which comes with rice and stir-fried veg.

                I went the omakase route for the first time here, and was not disappointed. For $30, I got a lovely maki that the chef had recently created - salmon, tuna and asparagus, lightly fried before being sliced, served with a wonderful sauce made of shiitake mushrooms, soy, and a port wine sauce. Divine! Next I was served 4 slices of Tuna Tataki - lightly seared tuna, sliced and topped with grated ginger and Montreal steak spice (! - not so surprising, considering the "Mother" restaurant is in Montreal), in another great sauce. The next course consisted of sashimi, sushi and another maki, this time spicy salmon. All of it was excellent. It was only when I finished the meal that I realized that it's Sunday night, not usually the optimal day to eat sushi. However they do it at Sado Sushi, all of the fish was delicious and fresh.

                Needless to say, we had a nice sized doggie bag to take home. The bill came to $70 before tax, tip and beverages, and would have been plenty for three people.

                1 Reply
                1. re: FlavoursGal

                  Great review, Flavours. My only concern about this place is the area. It can be quite dead sometimes. But I'm hoping the restaurant will become a destination and draw plenty of people from outside the 'hood. I spoke to the owner and he told me about some of the locations they had looked at when deciding to open here, but Eglinton was the only one that worked out.

                2. An ex-Montrealer heard that this place was owned by the same family that ownes her home-town favourite restaurant, Atami, and took us there on the weekend. I was worried when we got there, becuase the place was pretty dead for a Saturday night. But once I opended the menu, I was overwhelmed with the selsction and creativity. Everything sounded delicious. I let her order all her home-town favourites (aparently, many items came right off of the Atami menu)and couldn't have been more pleased - everything was absolutely delicious. I will go back as often as I can! Too bad the signage is so bland; it doesnt do the restaurant, or the food, any justice.

                  4 Replies
                  1. re: kasey j miller

                    Spread the word! It was pretty quiet last night (Sunday), as well. I so want this restaurant to succeed. It's in a location that's seen restaurants open and close every couple of years.

                    Let's make sure that Sado Sushi thrives. It deserves to.

                    1. re: FlavoursGal

                      FlavoursGal, do they have much in the way of veg and cooked sushi items? I'm going out with a friend who's pregnant (but prefers sushi/maki to teriyaki and other non-sushi dishes) and I thought we might give it a try. Thanks.

                      1. re: peppermint pate

                        They have many cooked sushi items, and the head chef and the servers are so accommodating that they'll do anything you ask for. I'm sure the chef (a lovely young man, whose name I keep forgetting to ask) would even create a dish especially for your friend. You must be sure to try the Volcano, made with cooked crab.

                        I've never encountered such polished service in a sushi restaurant before. I'd go there repeatedly for the food alone; the service only adds to the dining experience and the zen-like quality of the surroundings.

                        1. re: peppermint pate

                          There is something called the Hell roll which contains cooked salmon and some other ingredients, then the whole roll is lightly coated in tempura - delish.

                    2. I just discovered that Sado Sushi has a website, with their menu on it (although the chef's specialties, which are some of their best offerings, are not described).

                      http://www.sado-sushi.com/sadosushi.html

                      1. We just went, thanks to all these glowing recs. Now we'll add our own! It's a great addition and we'll go many times even though its not close to us. The prices are fantastic, service was great (whatever problems they may have had with speed have been worked out). There's a lot of pride and creativity in what they do with an exciting and extensive menu. The menu features a lot of cooked dishes, sushi and maki, and chef's specialities (large appetizers for $15). Among other very creative dishes was a speciality maki (Geisha) wrapped in a fascinating edible soy paper. (What I wouldn't do to get this in my pantry!)

                        We give very high marks to the maki (Sunshine roll: fried sweet potato, salmon roe, spicy scallop wrapped in the soy paper, e.g.). The sushi was nicely prepared...but we'll be back for the maki especially.

                        The place wasn't terribly full when we were there...it should be full. It's a great addition. Thanks to all above for posting!

                        1. Wow! I haven't had the time to Chowhound for awhile. I'm delighted that each of you has had as great an experience as I have had at Sado Sushi.

                          I've been there a total of four or five times now, and I've found more to love about the place with each visit. This restaurant deserves a lot of respect and, hopefully, more attention.

                          1. It's about time i've posted something good here. i've been to Sado Sushi about four times and boy the chefs are creative as hell. Since the begining of there opening, their are only two chefs that does my sushi(two lovely young man) who would gladly recommend you to some of there specialties. I read about them on Sweetspot.ca but wasnt amused at first, but than i heard so many people talking about this restaurant and i just had get my fingers on it.

                            I definately agree with olivergail, this restaurant deserve alot of respect and attetion to what they have to offer to us toronto sushi lovers. Everytime we've visited, the service is awsome and the food is undescriable: My favourite is the Tuna tar tar and the Orchid, its a must try. I hope everyone can enjoy it as much as i did.

                            1. Went last evening to Sado Sushi - finally had the chance to try it out. I went early, right after it opened at 5pm (I needed to be downtown by 7:30...). I was the only one there, so the service was exquisite. I ordered the sushi/sashimi combo platter, which was absolutely stunning when it arrived. A goldfish bowl full of ice with lemons on top house a beautifully rolled piece of raw salmon. The fried sweet potato with pollack was amazing, and the other rolls were also sooooo good. I wish I had had my camera with me, because the platter that was brought out was gorgeous.

                              They were very sensitive to my needs - I specifically asked for no seafood since i don't eat it, and they took care of it brilliantly. Even the waitress commented that I shouldn't worry because the fish ontop of my fried sweet potatoe was pollack, not crab.

                              Yes, ladies and gentlemen, I will be going back. Probably sooner than I can afford, but that's what you get when quality restaurants strike your neighbourhood.

                              1. yes, embee, you're right. I don't eat any seafood that don't have fins and gills... So I tend to stick to the "basic" fish, if you wish to call it that.

                                On another note, when I was walking along Eglinton West, the hostess from Sado Sushi recognized me (i was there thursday evening) and made a point to say hello.

                                1. I was at Sushi Sado tonight...
                                  I had a $40 omakase and I was somewhat impressed.
                                  from the posts above, I think that one can assume that they are not doing "traditional" sushi by Toronto standards. (Despite my limited experience)...this means they are doing something different than what is on offer at either Toronto's numerous bargain sushi joints (i.e. all of Bloor St) or Toronto's high end places (i.e. Hiro--at which I've had three delicous meals, or Japango or Kaji--about which I have read many a review but have not yet had the pleasure of dining at)

                                  The ingredients did not seem to be the centre of attention. I found them to be nothing more than what most places could provide on a good night.

                                  They make their own sauces, and the sauces are very good.

                                  They also offer a number of rolls and dishes that will be new to anyone who has only dined on the toronto scene.

                                  I think they fill a nice new "niche" on the Toronto dining circuit, and for people who are not interested in finding the most supremely fresh o-toro or kampachi or uni, or whatever...they might provide the most satisfying sushi in the city.

                                  For 40 dollars, one cannot complain about 5 quite tasty, if unexceptional courses!

                                  Very friendly staff, very passionate about what they are doing.

                                  no caveats beyond the fact that one should go to Sado expecting better and different sushi than one might find at an average neighbourhood place. it is not attempting to compete with the big-league sushi chefs in Toronto and anyone going there expecting an Omi or Kaji experience might be underwhelmed. Although...who knows, had I offered the chef $160 dollars for an omakase, he might have pulled some wagyu, foie and oscetra from the fridge...

                                  let's hope that they fill the niche well and if I hear that they can couple their enthusiasm and creativity w/ some top-tier product on the plate I'd definately go back, until then it's the old standbys.

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: mstacey42

                                    Very funny to read your post as I was also there last night and was planning to write the identical message.

                                    This place is a "modern" sushi restaurant and I think it fills a niche that doesn't exist in the city right now. It is a more upscale experience - in atmosphere, service, presentation, creativity, quality and price - than your neighbourhood sushi joint. On the other hand, the quality of the ingredients are less than you'd find at Omi, Japango and Hiro (and presumably Kaji, which I've not yet tried). Of those higher end places, Omi and Japango play around a bit more with their ingredients and so they're a bit more modern as well but not like Sushi Sado. If you're looking for a more purist experience where the fish rules, head to one of those places. If you're looking for very good fish with creative flavour combinations, then Sushi Sado promises a very good night's dinner.

                                    The menu is vast but the highlight is a large list of specials - many of them maki, including our group's favourites, the Geisha and Starfish. To give you a sense of the presentation, the Starfish was a deep fried maki filled with seared tuna and a few other bits (maybe avocado, rice and pollock - I can't remember). The maki was sliced and each piece was served on a fried taro chip with a gorgeous sauce swizzled and drizzled on the side of the large white square plate. Beautiful and delicious. Spider roll was also very good, same with the "hell" roll. Overall, I found the single weakest ingredient to be the little red "caviar" - at all but the top restaurants, this sometimes has a musty flavour which I did find here and it detracted from just about every roll it was on, particularly the lobster rolls.

                                    I enjoyed the unagi but those who ate the salmon and tuna nigiri said they were good, but not spectacular.

                                    Service could not have been friendlier or more polished - water and tea pots were refilled constantly without ever having to flag anyone down, lots of smiles, lots of passion about what they're doing. We had the flambeed banana spring roll with vanilla ice cream for dessert - it was quite tasty (though it didn't need the spring roll wrapping, in my opinion).

                                    Overall, it was a great evening and everybody commented on how different it was than any other sushi place they'd been to in Toronto. We would definitely go back.

                                  2. Our family of four went there tonight. We originally ordered some of the set sushi meals (e.g. chirashi) and some additional rolls, but the server offered us a $35/person omakase, so we tried it. It wasn't bad, but it wasn't exceptional. First course was a clear seafood broth with salmon, shrimp, scallop, and mushrooms, decent but a bit heavy on the mirin. Next was tuna tataki, which was quite good, and then scallops topped with a sea-urchin sauce and broiled. That had a bit of a mayonnaise taste which was an odd note, but overall it was tasty. Then "Volcano", which didn't quite work for me (though deep-fried sweet potato is always good), and a large platter with two hunks of Chilean sea bass misozuke on top of lots of stir-fried vegetables and mushrooms (the fish was great, the vegetables decent). Finally, we were served tuna and hamachi sashimi, salmon and butterfish nigiri, and a spicy salmon roll. The fish had the right texture but was somewhat lacking in flavour, and the rice made us glad we hadn't ordered chirashi; it was mushy and undervinegared.

                                    Presentation was good, and from what I saw going by to other diners, they have a lot of ideas. Service was a bit misplaced -- we were constantly asked what we thought of this or that, but our water wasn't refilled for the first half of the meal, and it was always straight out of the tap, no ice. The decor was all right (I really don't care about such things -- Sushi Kaji certainly doesn't have any) but the soundtrack of classical music set to trip-hop beats was somewhat grating.

                                    I think mstacey42, above, has them pegged. Personally, I would rather spend a little less at Sushi Marché, or go to Zen out in Scarborough for more classical but better-tasting fish. I'm not sorry I went, but it isn't a place I'll be raving about to my friends. --PR

                                    1. I had been to Sado once already and went back last night expecting another delicious dinner. Unfortunately, I was very dissapointed. The sushi was acceptable, but not outstanding. THe rolls were dry and not nearly as tasety as I remembered. The only highlight was the Sashimi roll, off the Specialties menu. Plus, I find the menu very complicated and overwhelming. Too many pages, and too many inserts. I am taking this place off my "you've gotta try..." list. Sorry Sado, I wanted to love you but...

                                      1. I went to Sado for lunch today with a friend of mine for his birthday. We were both very impressed by the quality, service (though the place was empty), and unique menu items. The lunch menu was reasonably priced, left us both full, and was not terribly expensive. The Volcano was incredible, and i also enjoyed the 911 roll, which has spicy tuna and caviar in it. Overall, it was a great dining experience.

                                        The only thing that surprised me about Sado was how empty it was. Hopefully this will change in time. Thanks to everyone for recommending the place...

                                        1 Reply
                                        1. re: dcooper

                                          Yes, I've noticed that as well. It seems that they do a lot of take out business, though.

                                        2. We went again to Sado this weekend with a friend for her birthday, it was quite busy, although we had no trouble getting a reservation. It was our second visit and to our relief, we found their sushi specialities like the Geisha, Hell, and Vocano to be as tasty as on our first visit. The owner was acting as chef this time, instead of stewarding, and they had some women servers, sweet and friendly, but clearly inexperienced. They brought out a lovely fried tempura roll filled with icecream and with a crepe wrapping around the icecream, as a complimentary dish for our friend whose b'day it was - filling enough for the 3 of us. I would do the classic sushi/sashimis at other places, such as Zen or Cafe Michi or Kaji, but this is really a good bet for a nice light-hearted evening dining out. We were a little disappointed with our first taste of Sushi Marche the previous week, so have resolved to stick to Sado and these others, even though March is very close to us.

                                          1. "Quote: We originally ordered some of the set sushi meals (e.g. chirashi) and some additional rolls, but the server offered us a $35/person omakase"

                                            Toronto restaurants, Susur especially, pushes their tasting menu because it is profitable and the patrons have no idea what's good and what's mediocre since they have no clue what's coming. I had to fight off the waiter who was most annoyed that I did not accept the offer of the "tasting menu".

                                            If one is a foodie, one should do the research and based on several reviews, insists on the reviewed highlight of the menu and not what the waiter and chef/owner push.

                                            1. Joanne Kates absolutely trashed this place in Todays Globe.

                                              and I mean TRASHED. One of the worst reviews i have ever seen.

                                              2 Replies
                                              1. re: superizzy

                                                When you said she "absolutely trashed this place", the words "this place" could be referring to both the restaurant and this website. And you're right, it was ugly. For the orginal posters, take a look:
                                                http://www.chowhound.com/topics/359882
                                                The thread got moved to the Media board since it went offtopic.

                                                1. re: TexSquared

                                                  I couldn't believe what I read in this review. Here is how I responded to her via an e-mail, subject: Kates, you should drop the "es".

                                                  I've rarely encountered such gratuituous kvetching in my life as I witnessed in your weekend article on Sado Sushi. I've been going there for months now and thoughly enjoying the ambiance, the service and yes the food. Without exception, every single person I sent there have had very positive to rave reviews of the place with a "thank you" added.

                                                  I would normally discount your review as perhaps having a bad day or something. But in view of your admission that you dined there twice I have to conclude that your judgment is seriously impaired. You cannot deny the overwhelmingly positive remarks in Chowhound, so why would you take such an oposing view? In my opinion this place is a gem. And I recognize that very few gems are flawless, but I can accept the few flaws that are there. I believe the majority would agree with me.

                                              2. Two th8ings.

                                                1) Sado is OK. Certainly not as bad as Kates made it sound but, also not worth a drive to a neighbourhood that is not really a foodie destination and has little appeal to out of towner's either. If you live near by then fine otherwise why bother?

                                                2)Kates is a spoiled, chip on her shoulder, insecure North Toronto kid who should really not be read. Come on who in the right mind takes such a person seriously? Looking for objectively in a Joanne Kates review is akin to searching for objectively in Wolf Blitzer cnn piece on the middle east...

                                                1. It is such a shame that such a mean spirited review will dissuade those who would otherwise be impressed by this hidden gem of a restaurant.

                                                  I have eaten at Sado many times and am never disappointed by the high quality of the food - exceptional - beautiful presentation and lovely, welcoming staff. They may not be of the white gloved variety found at other pretentious restaurants, but I'll take a great meal in a relaxed family joint any day. Sado is the best sushi I have eaten in Toronto - bar none - and is worth the trip to Eglinton West.

                                                  1. I read the JK review after reading the prior postings. The prior Chowhounds postings have had a salutary effect. She attributes, she devotes her column to the food. Now the question is, is she right? I would like to hear from Japanese who are familiar with Japanese cuisine. I would also be interested in knowing if Sado has created fusion cuisine, Montreal JAP. If they have, they are not to be criticized as long as it is understood what it is and Sado's standards are high. (Sado is not running a Japanese cultural society; one can enjoy and assess without embarassment chop suey and souvlaki, which are North American creations.)
                                                    VVM

                                                    1. I went to this place last night for the first time OMG, It was sooooooooo good!!! Thank you for your post!!!

                                                      1. Anyone been to Sado very recently? Thinking of going on Friday with a group for omakase ($40?)

                                                        6 Replies
                                                        1. re: Food Tourist

                                                          Sado Sushi has become many people's favourite neighbourhood restaurant. My kids never want to go anywhere else, and we're there every couple of weeks. The food is consistently good and the service is wonderful -- owners Sonny and Lisa have become good friends with their regular customers, and there are lots of them.

                                                          I'd recommend that you order a la carte, rather than omakase. There are so many wonderful things to choose from, use being in a group to your advantage and order lots!

                                                          Enjoy your meal!

                                                          1. re: Food Tourist

                                                            I was there last on Saturday, the 27th of October, and I had the $45 omakase. I didn't provide them with any preferences and here's what I got.

                                                            -three oysters, broiled in a miso and uni sauce. Tasty, sweet, creamy...a little too buttery (there was sort of a pool of butter) but maybe oysters rockafeller dishes are always too buttery. It didn't feel like an "expert" dish...lacking in artistry...but tasty.

                                                            -beef tenderloin in rice paper wrap with kani, avocado, and spring mix. Good quality, tender, flavourful beef, nice regular otherstuff. Really tasty kewpie, citrus and uni dipping sauce, though.

                                                            - Yellowtail neck. I've never had this before, and you can get it at lots of places so I don't know if this version was at all exceptional, but it was awesome! So rich and moist. And sooo much meat to pick at. I was surprised that they serve any necks at all at a place that seems to serve very boring (i.e. non-threatening) inventive dishes. It came with some really good teriyaki that had some globs of sriracha in it. I love my sriracha.

                                                            --tuna tartare. tuna in some kinda light mayonaisy, metal ring mold shaped, with taro chips. Nice. boring. It felt like something you might have eaten at a Roy's in Atlantic city in 1994. tasty though.

                                                            Not terribly stuffed. Didn't spend too much money. Was neither wowed by the technique, nor the ingredients. Thought everything tasted like better versions of regular sushi flavours. a lot of variations on kewpie mayonnaise if you dig that stuff. The staff are really nice. I will give them this, though. The tartare with cambazola is a great dish. will ask for that next time. i'm in the neighbourhood...so I'll go by again.

                                                            sadly, the place was kinda dead.

                                                            1. re: mstacey42

                                                              Thanks mstacey42. No "regular" sushi/sashimi?

                                                              1. re: Food Tourist

                                                                No regular sushi or sashimi. I really think that one might be poorly served by ordering nigiri or sashimi here. The quality of the fish/rice never seemed exceptional. The draw is the deliciousness of many a mayo-based sauce.

                                                                1. re: mstacey42

                                                                  That matches my experience last March with sushi/sashimi at Atami in Montreal!

                                                              2. re: mstacey42

                                                                Anyone been to this place recently? I can't find recent reviews.

                                                            2. Had the $40 omakase as part of a group of 7 on Friday evening. Best I can say is the seven courses each arrived surprisingly quickly. Was dismayed by overabundant use of crab stick and taro chips. Learned too late that my friends had specified, "we like appetizers" and "we like salmon" when ordering. I really disliked the decor/atmosphere and the place was mostly empty, but as you know, the food is what's most important, and for that reason, I won't be returning.

                                                              1. Well that is good to know!...I have been there a couple of times..the food is fantastic..but the service was just awful!!! It took 2 hours for my daughter and I to get our food...there was only 1 waitress for the entire restaurant..and people were very angry.- walking out. The poor server..she handled it well..but it was ridiculous...haven't been back since. I will give it another shot....since the food was really very good.