Dinner at Miku in Vancouver BC left me with two questions - please help!
I live in Seattle, but was in Vancouver BC recently for the weekend. I had dinner at Miku after reading so many glowing reviews all over the internet. I did think it was good, but I wasn't overwhelmed especially for the price. I don't mind a large bill when the food is really outstanding, but I know I could have gone elsewhere for less and had an equal if not better meal. The funny thing is, my favorite part of the meal was the dessert which is not what I would expect at a sushi restaurant! We also had an amazing bottle of sake.
The food was beautifully presented and the service was good. Many people seem to love the decor but I felt it was a little dated, although I know they're in the process of moving to a new space. So first question: Am I just missing something? And question two: Where else would you recommend for sushi the next time I'm in Vancouver? I had considered Tojo's, but there seemed to be a lot of mixed feelings about it. I'm also completely happy at a hole-in-the-wall establishment as well.
For a more detailed review and photos (the food is pretty): http://kimpluscraig.com/2013/05/09/mi...
Here on Chowhound, Miku has mixed reviews. I think the aburi salmon sushi is a crowd favourite...but consensus is that it is just OK except for that one thing. I had one good meal there when it first opened...but I have had mediocre ones after that.
Miko (with an "o" at the end) is good and traditional. Hoping that Miko isn't the place you actually planned to go?
Another traditional sushi place is AKI in downtown Vancouver. Been around since 1963.
Further east, along Hastings St in a much more humble part of town is KOKO, who's been around at least since the mid-'70s when I first went there.
Other good options (in Richmond) include:
Look them up on Urbanspoon Vancouver. They're all fairly traditional like Mik-O is.
I don't know about Aki. For me Aki has always been about the Robata and traditional Japanese cooked dishes.
The sushi there is good but not memorable.
Ever since they moved into their new modern space, even the Robata tastes off. Still good but it's lacking the wow factor it once had.
Makes me wonder if they were able to keep that robata grill setup that they had at the previous Thurlow location. At the old spot, you knew ate at Aki if you walked out with a faint smoke smell on you. :)
Kaide Sushi. Tom the owner and sushi chef spent over a decade training in Nagoya, Japan and is meticulous when it comes to ordering his fish from suppliers and in prepping his rice. If you do go there, I recommend skipping the rolls and going for either the Kaide assorted sushi or ordering nigiri sushi a la carte. Both the unagi don and marinated tuna don are excellent as well. I also recommend sitting at the bar for the full charm of it, even if there's nothing particularly charming about the decor. While not the cheapest sushi joint in Vancouver, it certainly has some of the freshest fish outside of Japan, without having to pay Miku or Tojo prices. After having just returned from Japan two weeks ago, eating the same old farmed salmon sashimi that every sushi joint in Vancouver has just doesn't do it for me anymore.