Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Ginza Sushi

Ginza Sushi has four locations in Toronto - the dealfind voucher that I got for Ginza Sushi a few months back ($60 worth of food and drinks for $29) was only valid at the Yorkville location, which is at Bay and Yorkville. 

You can probably tell that I'm quite the voucher collector by the number of times I mention "vouchers" on my blog posts (only vouchers for food though). I actually have an Excel spreadsheet that has information on all my vouchers; several columns showing information such as coupon number, how much I paid for it, the discount, whether reservations are needed, whether alcohol is included, the expiry date (if any), and any other important information / restrictions etc. I sometimes like to show the spreadsheet  to my friends just to freak them out =D

With all the vouchers I've accumulated (and still going) it's obvious that I need to use them every chance I get to balance out my voucher supply and demand (economics 101). This is precisely the reason why my boyfriend and I went to Ginza Sushi on a Saturday night a few weeks ago, just so we can use one of my vouchers. This is rare for us because unless it's a special occasion, we hardly venture downtown just for dinner (we hang out in uptown usually). 

To my boyfriend: if you're reading this, we may have to venture to downtown more often as my vouchers are piling up fast =P

I was surprised at how small Ginza Sushi was. Not sure what I was expecting but I was expecting it to be bigger. Our table was against the wall - I turned around to take this picture.

Straight ahead of me is the sushi bar. And that's Ginza Sushi for ya!

My boyfriend was overwhelmed at the big menu because when we eat Japanese food uptown, our brain usually turns off and we just opt for a party tray - no thinking needed. He was relieved when I told him I already checked out Ginza Sushi's menu online and knew what to order (I wanted to fully optimize by $60 voucher haha).

8 oz hot sake ($9), Sapporo ($8) - I usually order nigori sake as it is my favourite kind of sake but it only comes in cold form. That night was already chilly - I desperately wanted something warm so I got the hot sake for myself. My boyfriend always gets beer.

It is becoming more rare to find edamame on-the-house at Japanese restaurants nowadays so bonusss =D These had a bit of salt on them.

Sashimi Boat - hamachi, tuna, salmon, octopus, snapper, white tuna, surf clam, sweet shrimp ($28). 

Obviously not in boat form, which is better because if it came in those wooden boats I don't think our table could fit it. Nothing to complain about here, all praises - the sashimi were all very fresh and were all decent sized cuts; the tuna was especially thick. They did not cheap out on wasabi or ginger either (I ♥ ginger).

Deluxe Spicy Salmon Roll - tobiko, avacado, ginger, wasabi wrapped in salmon & mayonnaise ($7).

Probably our least favourite that night. Although I liked how this was different than your typical spicy salmon roll in that it had no rice but was instead, wrapped with salmon, it looked sloppy and was not rolled tightly at all. The downfall of the roll was that it wasn't even spicy! Not even a little spicy, nothing at all. My boyfriend didn't like this because he doesn't like ginger (which was in the roll). What can I say, this Deluxe Spicy Salmon Roll was full of surprises, just not good ones.

Tokyo BBQ Ribs ($6) - These were supposed to be appetizers but they came after the Sashimi Boat and the Deluxe Spicy Salmon Roll - I wish somehow they would time it so that the the sashimi and spicy salmon roll came out at the same time or after the ribs. Anyway, these were tasty - I guess the "Tokyo" part really meant "Terriyaki" because that's what the sauce tasted like. Not complaining, just stating a fact. I wish there was more meat to these ribs though.

There was a long wait between when we got the Sashimi Boat / Deluxe Spicy Salmon Roll / the BBQ ribs and the sushi rolls (below). Both my boyfriend and I were not full yet from at the time and we were just picking at the food slowly while waiting for our sushi rolls. When they finally came, we saw that the sushi rolls were ginormous. Let me tell you, my pictures do not do their size justice (to give you an idea, each piece was the size of a futomaki).

Our sushi plate consisted of two Signature Rolls: Black Pearl Roll & Ginza Roll (8 pieces each).

Black Pearl Roll - snapper tempura, BBQ eel, black caviar served with a special tangy sauce ($15). 

My boyfriend and I loved this. Mainly because of the amount of snapper there was in each piece of sushi. I hope you can tell from the picture what I mean; all the white you see in there is all snapper, which makes up like 3/4 of the roll. Also, in most Japanese restaurants, you will usually find soft shell crab meat in rolls and it's rarer to see fish tempura in rolls. And obviously we loved the black caviar! 

Ginza Roll - soft shell crab, tempura shrimps, BBQ eel, tobiko, avacado, cucumber, asparagus, green onion & mayonnaise ($15). 

Even though this roll was nothing out of the ordinary taste wise, I have to applaud Ginza Sushi again for the pure size of the rolls and how clean the roll was cut; you can dissect and differentiate each ingredient in this Ginza roll. 

We could not finish the rolls. We had three pieces of each signature roll left and had to pack them up. My boyfriend said he couldn't wait to eat them for his midnight snack. Remember, he was saying this when he was stuffed, which just shows how much he loved the rolls. Again, I need to emphaszie the pure size of the rolls - a lot of places may give you big rolls but filled mostly with rice, but not at Ginza Sushi, they used just enough rice, not too much, not too little.

Initially, for dessert, I was just going to get a scoop of ice cream for $3. But then when I saw that the tempura ice cream was only $1 more, I couldn't resist.

Tempura ice cream ($4) - This was a huge ball of fried ice cream goodness; I have never seen such a big scoop of ice cream in my whole life.

Chocolate sauce on thin tempura batter all wrapped around a giant ball of vanilla ice cream (you have a choice of mango, green tea, vanilla, or red bean). Need I say more?

I did not have high expectations for Ginza Sushi as I only wanted to use my voucher, but my boyfriend and I both came out really happy and satisfied with the quality and value of their food. I'm glad that I got to try Ginza Sushi  with my dealfind voucher, not only because of the deal, obviously, but because if I didn't have the voucher, I probably wouldn't have tried Ginza Sushi  any time soon. I would definitely want to go back in the future. 

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