Japanese in North Scarborough/Markham
I've been to Cafe Michi twice for dinner, and I'm going to disagree with most of the feedback here and say that I was slightly dissappointed with the quality there. My main complaint revolves around the sushi rice - it's just not seasoned correctly. It;s also cold and a bit hard. I had the chirashi cafe au lait, and the seafood was good (esp. the salmon roe), it was just the rice that dissappointed. also, we had negihama maki (which is a roll with minced yellowtail and green onions), and again the rice was cold and not well seasoned, and on top of that they had solid pieces of hamachi in the roll, not minced, like it is supposed to be!! granted Kaji himself was not there, and I'm not sure who the chef was, but whoever it was did not seem to know what they were doing.
I am a regular at Zen restaurant at Eglington / Danforth, and it is a much better restaurant, at nearly the same price point. i;ve had a invisible menu there, where the chef takes control and makes individual sushi for you until you are full, and it was about $60 pre-tax. I think I must have had more than 15 pieces, with expensive stuff like toro, uni, wild yellowtail...so the value was amazing. I don't thnk you can find many restaurants better than Zen at any price in Toronto, actually. And they know how to season their rice!!
had an omakase dinner at Cafe Michi tonight. It was good value, fresh and tasty fish, but not a lot of variety or creativity. Chef was Chinese, I understand it's Mr. Lin. All the waitresses are Japanese, though.
First, omakase price has been jacked up to $45 from $35 as advertised in NOW Mag. Second, even though the place wasn't packed, there were fairly long intervals between omakase plates/bowls. Chef seems to work VERY deliberately. (not necessarily a bad thing.)
What was included:
1. Mixed green salad with smoked salmon and vinaigrette
2. Sashimi: Tuna, hamachi, etc. (6 pieces)
3. Salmon roe bowl on rice
4. Nigirisushi: 6 pieces, incl uni.
5. Tuna and salmon maki (6 pieces)
6. Coffee and cake.
As I said, fish was excellent: fresh, succulent, melt-in-your-mouth good. Puzzled by tekkamaki arrival late in the game. Looked a bit like a filler. Expected something lighter / more exquisite.
My companion had cafe au lait chirashi, and it was very good, too.
IMHO omakase value was more than the sum of its parts. But if I wanted REAL omakase, where surprises abound, I would be better off going to Omi (and paying twice as much.) This was just a good, solid meal, but a bit underwhelming.
The space is sparkling clean and very cute, if a bit cramped. I think I will be back, but will be ordering a la carte.
Well, let me just say this: Chowhounds are my new best friends.
We picked up from Zen, and it was really good. Nice, fresh sushi, great variety and served by a truly gracious staff. All in all, and experience that we will happily repeat next time we're sushi shopping.
Since we only go for the vegetarian variety, I'm always anxious to find something new or different. This place fit the bill on both fronts - little bundles of asparagus tied with nori around rice balls, big, honking rounds of regular sushi and more flavours of mushroom than I ever thought possible.
Everything was delectable, and just the right amount for a late-night snack.
Thanks again, everyone!
Good city/highway view at Sagano (We were there at night). Sashimi is ok and big, so if you like big pieces of sashimi, that's the place. The yakitori dinner we order was just average. I did not feel like eating in a Japanese restaurant, I think it's the atmosphere there make me feel that way.
I agree with Sweetie that wherever you may want to go you should call to ensure they're open. Many sushi places aren't open Sunday's let alone NYE.
A second vote for Zen. Excellent food. I understand Cafe Michi occasionally has Kaji in the kitchen. Anybody ever dined at Sagano around Kennedy & 401?
is this the restaurant in the hotel at kennedy & 401? if so, yes, i've been a few times -- if i recall correctly, it was a bit pricey and while fresh, it didn't feel as "refreshing" as sushi at zen or cafe michi....hmm, i wonder if sometimes i am more influenced by the surroundings/atmo when i eat. the atmo at sagano is darkly lit hotel bar/restaurant; don't get me wrong, you'll have great views of the city (scarboro no less, and i'm a proud scarberian) but there isn't the sense of painstakingly crafted sushi by artisanal sushi chefs... in spite of the kimono-clad waitresses - the dessert platters are beautiful, but not japanese dessertfare... more like chocolate cakes, etc...
I am not sure where you are going to from the zoo, but T&T is at Middlefield and Steeles. I must warn you though T&T is not celebration calibre sushi. Could you not just call your favorite place and order a head of time for pick up. I am sure your guests wouldn't mind going a little out of the way for sushi that you know you will like.