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Yuzu

I'm looking for a nice downtown sushi restaurant for this Friday evening. Can anyone comment on the sushi/sashimi, atmosphere, etc.? Are there any tables that have benches instead of chairs? Ideally, I'd like the kind of table and benches that are behind those little half curtains. Two of my three guests are from out of town and we'd like to have a bit of privacy so we can chat and catch up. If Yuzu is not the place to go, are there other recommendations? I'm looking for high quality raw fish. I'm not particularly interested in any cooked fish or other hot dishes.

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Yuzu
236 Adelaide St W, Toronto, ON M5H1W7, CA

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  1. There are tables with benches, but nothing that would be private. However, I don't find Yuzu loud. I do go later in the evenings though.

    Shot of the main dining area:
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/jlunar/4...
    Shot from main dining area towards the bar:
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/jlunar/5...
    Another view (not my shot
    )http://www.flickr.com/photos/reelasia...

    I've had really good nigiri there, though the shari can be inconsistent. Have taken looots of photos from yuzu (very photogenic, their dishes).

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/jlunar/4...
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/jlunar/s...
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/jlunar/s...
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/jlunar/s...

    I really enjoy eating at Yuzu but uh... I eat there a lot (can you tell?), so I'm biased.

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    http://www.foodpr0n.com -- food. is. love.

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    Yuzu
    236 Adelaide St W, Toronto, ON M5H1W7, CA

    1 Reply
    1. re: jlunar

      Great pictures - thanks for posting! And a good reminder of some of the great things I ate there - that pork belly completely blew my mind. SO great.

    2. I'm going tonight. I'm no sushi expert, so my analysis of Yuzu's shari or powder vs. real wasabi will not be authoritative. I'll let you know about the tables, at least.

      For downtown, I'm going to this one basically because it's for business, I think it looks nice and it's not Nami.

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      Nami
      55 Adelaide St E, Toronto, ON M5C1K6, CA

      Yuzu
      236 Adelaide St W, Toronto, ON M5H1W7, CA

      1. I went to Yuzu for my birthday a couple of weeks ago with my husband and it was wonderful. The atmosphere is great for a Friday night - funky, dimly lit. A really lovely room. There are no private curtained off areas though but it's not loud or cramped (I was there on a Friday). The food was delicious. The standard sushi plate was really good with interesting and delicious twists on how it was prepared (a hint of garlic on some for example). The hot appetizer plates were also great. I would definitely go back and I would highly recommend it (in fact I found about it here on Chowhound).

        2 Replies
        1. re: Arcadiaseeker

          Thanks! This sounds very promising. If Zen were more centrally located, it would be my automatic choice, but one of my guests will be coming from a downtown hotel and wants to hoof it, so I'm trying to make things easy for him. Being a raw fish lover, my inclination is to request an all raw chef's choice, but should I reconsider and let the kitchen do its thing?

          1. re: 1sweetpea

            That was my dilemma too - we wanted to be downtown but did not want to go to Nami. The thing about Yuzu is their hot apps are really really good and worth a try. I did not have the sashimi so can't vouch for letting the chef do their thing - but if the hot dishes are anything to go by, that might be a good route.

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            Nami
            55 Adelaide St E, Toronto, ON M5C1K6, CA

            Yuzu
            236 Adelaide St W, Toronto, ON M5H1W7, CA

        2. First off...no half curtains providing privacy. It's an open room.

          Second, I really enjoyed my meal. For appetizers, we had warm dishes. The pork belly was succulent and delicious. The gyoza were pretty good, but you couldn't really tell they were stuffed with duck. The crispy fried oysters were a bit weak. Great crispiness, but I found the oysters had lost their way.

          For sushi/sashimi/etc....the spicy tuna roll is great. I always loved the Japango spicy sauce, and this one was excellent. The Uni was buttery and good. I only had the one piece and if I had to do it again, I'd swat aside the crispy garnishes as they take away from the flavour (although they look good). I'm no Uni expert, so can't compare. The BC tuna we had sashimi and nigiri. Buttery and delicious. But...and this comment applies to most of their sushi, while I appreciate garnishes and extra flavour touches, I find they overwhelm the fish. You get the texture, but the flavour is lost.

          We also had the Yuzu roll...pass. Expensive and not worth it.

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          Japango
          122 Elizabeth St, Toronto, ON M5G1P5, CA

          Yuzu
          236 Adelaide St W, Toronto, ON M5H1W7, CA

          4 Replies
          1. re: grandgourmand

            Thanks for the details, GG. I have no qualms about moving gratuitous garnishes aside in favour of pure sushi flavours, or else trying a small bite with, then the rest without. I'm also not big on special rolls. I like my maki straightforward and no more complicated than yellowtail with green onion, though now I'm intrigued by the spicy Japango sauce, which I've never tasted.

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            Japango
            122 Elizabeth St, Toronto, ON M5G1P5, CA

            1. re: 1sweetpea

              Agreed. The Yuzu roll was our only disappointment - I had read about it so we ordered one up and it was very generic (unlike the rest of our meal) - I would have rather tried something else.

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              Yuzu
              236 Adelaide St W, Toronto, ON M5H1W7, CA

              1. re: 1sweetpea

                If you're getting the spicy tuna maki...best to finish with that. It has the most poweful flavour. Bad spicy maki taste like it could be tabasco and mayo. This stuff has more chili flavour and a hint of smoke. I know it's not the most authentic stuff...but damn it's good.

                1. re: grandgourmand

                  I took the safe route and ordered the sushi deluxe, substituting a standard salmon maki for the yuzu roll. The salmon maki was fine, though quite small. I quite enjoyed the treatments of each piece of sushi for their creativity, but would have been just as happy to savour the freshness of the fish and seafood had they been presented unadorned, except for a dab of wasabi, which was missing from each piece. The fish was very fresh and the selection was decent, though I was disappointed not to see any toro amongst the offerings. I can't complain about the flavours whatsoever, though a couple of pieces of fish tasted as if they had been dipped in the same salad dressing as on the house salad. I can't help being a purist. I like my fish to look and taste like fish. When consuming it as sushi, I want nothing more than wasabi, soy and ginger to accompany. That said, I enjoyed my dinner at Yuzu for exactly what it was: fusion flavours presented with sushi. Next time, I will focus on fun appetizers and mains and save the purist-style sushi for another restaurant.

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                  Yuzu
                  236 Adelaide St W, Toronto, ON M5H1W7, CA

            2. Had a good lunch at Yuzu today.

              My friend tried the sushi sampler. and a very generous Nabeyaki Udon, including the tempura shrimp, seaweed and egg, as well as a non-tempura shrimp, several types of mushrooms, some zucchini, as well as other veggies. I ordered the double-decker bento, which included salmon teriyaki (could've also ordered beef or chicken) 2 tempura shrimp and several tempura veg, 4 pieces of nigiri sushi, marinated spicy zucchini, marinated sweet potato, some sort of marinated tofu, and rice. The noodles and bento included a green salad and miso soup to start. Our meal came to around $50 before tip.

              Although I've enjoyed dinners at Yuzu, this was the first time I've been for lunch, and I hope to return soon.

              Good place to dine before a matinee at the Royal Alex or Princess of Wales Theatres.

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              Yuzu
              236 Adelaide St W, Toronto, ON M5H1W7, CA

              3 Replies
              1. re: prima

                Hi Prima do you mind sharing how was the nabeyaki udon?even though your friend ordered it how did he/she like it? I like to make it at home but the number of ingredients required for it sometime makes it not worthwhile to do at home but I think its very good on the cold winter days.

                1. re: elvisahmed

                  My friend liked it a lot. I tried some of the noodles, broth and enoki mushrooms, and liked what I tried. It was larger than most versions I've seen in Toronto, with a lot more ingredients, and a nicely seasoned broth. It cost $15 at lunchtime, which I thought was reasonable. It looks like it might cost $17 at dinnertime. It looked a lot like this photo taken by jlunar last year: http://www.flickr.com/photos/jlunar/5... , the main difference being the version today included zucchini, and the version in the photo appears to include some napa.

                  I also read on this Board that Ematei makes a good version (see photo here http://www.postcity.com/Eat-Shop-Do/E... ), possibly the best nabeyaki udon in TO. Haven't tried Ematei's version yet.

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                  Ematei
                  30 Saint Patrick St, Toronto, ON M5T3A3, CA

                  1. re: prima

                    Thank you much appreciated. I will try it out on the next cold day (seems like the upcoming Saturday)