|Ajisai Sushi Bar|
We got there at 5:15pm and the restaurant was still relatively empty. The inside was quite small, but very cozy. We were greeted with smiles and friendly offer of drinks. After looking through the menu, we started off with two appetizers:
The tuna was 90% cooked. We actually expected the texture of tuna tataki, because the waitress told us the middle of the tuna is raw. But when we got it, it was almost fully cooked. Although we both thought the tuna was too cooked for our taste, I still enjoyed the flavour of this. The sweet thick miso sauce blended well with sour cucumber.
I would consider this dish as a substitute of a salad. The ponzu sauce is on the sour-side. There was mostly seaweed soaked in ponzu sauce with a few slices of geoduck. The geoduck was only average and the portion was quite small.
Moments later, our sushi arrived. There wasn't much presentation in this restaurant. We ordered two rolls and 6 pieces of nigiri sushi; they were all placed in the same dish. We aren't the type to judge a book by its cover. Presentation and taste doesn't have a correlation, in my opinion.
This dynamite roll was recommended to us by the waitress. It had boiled prawn, tobiko, avocado, cucumber, and flavoured by spicy mayo. What I really liked about this roll is that it is made of boiled prawn instead of tempura prawn! I personally would never order dynamite roll when I go to restaurants due to the face that the tempura prawn is never fresh and crispy. Ajisai is very creative, they used corn flake to create the crispy texture and the blend of this with the boiled prawn was very good.
As the name of the roll says, the roll had only unagi and avocado in the middle. Very simple roll, but made very delicious. The avocado was at the perfect ripeness and they used quality unagi pieces, instead of chopped up ends. The amount of sushi rice they used was perfect. And it was topped with the special sweet unagi sauce. In other restaurant, this will usually be consider a special roll, either called 'dragon roll' or 'caterpillar roll'. This roll is better than others' special roll.
Fresh and fully thawed. The sushi rice was soft. The red tuna and hamachi was only average. The toro, on the other hand, impressed us. It had a great 'melt-in-the-mouth' marbley fat taste. It was so good that Michael had to order more of it!
This hosomaki was very good! Saba have a natural salted taste that blends well with the pieces of aromatic shiso o-ba leaf. They also included a piece of sour cucumber? or ginger? I'm not quite sure. For a small piece of maki, it was very flavourful and you can taste all 3 component of the roll. We also had to order 3 more toro nigiri because it was so creamy and delicious!
Location: This little sushi bar is hidden within Kerridale. If you simply drive by or walk by Kerrisdale, you will not spot it. It is actually hidden in a small plaza (near London Drugs). Beware: they close on Mondays and close for lunch on Sundays.
Food: Great taste. Quality food. Definitely come here for the sushi.
Service: Courteous, approachable, and friendly; very willing to answer any questions. Tea cup was never dry.
Price: We spent a total of $55 with tax for two.
Recommended? Highly! I love this place!
Ajisai Sushi Bar - Kerrisdale
2081 W 42nd Avenue