155 East Beaver Creek Road
Richmond Hill, ON
The other day, my friend Jenn and I went here on a weeknight to get some dinner. I've never been here despite it being in existence for a while. I guess I never noticed these small little restaurants next to the bigger East Beaver Creek chain restaurants. When we arrived, the first thing I noticed was that it was a family run business. It is literally run by like 2 people. (okay maybe 3 if there's someone inside washing the dishes). The one waitress attended to all the tables, and surprisingly, the service wasn't the least bit jeopardized. The place wasn't packed, but there was still a good 70% occupancy. She was very friendly and didn't seem like she was flustered with all the people she had to serve. Impressive. The second was the chef. He was Japanese (yay, bonus points!), but there was only one of them serving the entire restaurant. That being said, the food took a bit longer than I would've liked. It also probably explains the smaller menu and the lack of options compared to most other Japanese restaurants. I wouldn't suggest coming here if you were starving.
Left: Salad, Right Miso SoupPretty standard salad and miso soup. The soup had sufficient miso in it, and had lots of solid ingredients like tofu and seaweed inside. Though I don't have a picture, I actually also wanted to comment on the green tea. I always appreciate when a place serves authentic green tea instead of green coloured water. Not a big deal, but a nice compliment to the meal.
We ordered a boat to share, and in general everything was quite fresh. Particularly I liked the shrimp sushi. For whatever reason I thought the shrimp tasted "crisper" than most places and had more shrimp flavour. The one thing that was disappointing however, was the tuna sashimi. It wasn't as fresh or dense like it should be, and just fell apart in my mouth. Maybe it was just my peice? Everything else was good. Good size portions, variety, and freshness. It was slightly pricey, but Jenn and I were both full after.
Seasame and Green Tea Ice Cream
Dessert is usually the highlight of my meal, and this time it was extra special. The ice cream may seem like just regular ice cream, but as per the waitress, it's actually shipped all the way from Japan! (I can't even imagine what the logistics of that would be....) It actually did taste better than the regular ice cream you get from AYCE places. I don't know if you can tell from the picture, but the green tea ice cream here was a different colour of green than it usually is at other restaurants. It was a darker green and had a really strong matcha flavour. It was less of a heavy cream flavour, and more refershing as a result of that. The seasame ice cream wasn't just the artificially flavoured black stuff and actually tasted as if someone ground up some black seasame and mixed it in with vanilla ice cream. You could feel lots crunching while you ate it. I wish they gave seconds!
One last thing. I really liked that they had all these Japanese themed balloon figures around the restaurant. (I guess I'm not too tough to amuse eh? haha..) I managed to get a picture of this geisha by the sushi bar on my way out =)