Sushi Garden is a popular Japanese restaurant on Kingsway.
One thing you should know about us is that we are sushi aficionado’s, and thus, have an unhealthy obsession with it. Sushi Garden (both Kingsway/Metrotown and Lougheed Highway locations) is THE mother of all sushi places. Admittedly, Sushi Garden used to be our favourite sushi joint until we discovered Sushi Nanaimo and their specialty rolls (can you say Awesome Roll and Nanaimo Roll?). That (specialty rolls), and the fact that it is SO much closer to home is a big plus. But that doesn’t mean we don’t visit the place that started our love for sushi anymore…
Prawn Tempura - $7.50 (7/7)
There’s really not much to say about this, except for the fact that it tastes like pure heaven everytime we order it. We’re not sure as to how often they change their oil, but it definitely seems like it’s a daily thing as the tempura is always fresh and crisp. There’s just the right amount of batter and deep fried to pure perfection.
California Cone - $2.95 (7/7)
If you’re a fan of the California Roll, this is a MUST GET. It’s a California Roll, but in cone form. They definitely do NOT skimp out on the crab meat and they use a slice of avocado, so you can definitely taste the creaminess. The California Cone is so good that we can say it is 10x better than the actual California Roll itself.
Spicy Chopped Scallop Cone - $3.50 (6/7)
Again, they do NOT skimp out on the scallop. They do, however, skimp out on the hot sauce. They just squeeze a dollop on top of the scallop. ..It’d be nice if they mixed it with the scallop throughout. They sometimes even forget the sauce. Preposterous, right?
Alaska Roll - $3.95 (7/7)
This isn’t your typical Alaska Roll that you get at sushi joints. This is basically an Avocado Roll drenched with some sort of mysterious awesome sauce (it might just be the typical salad dressing you get at sushi place’s, but it’s full of garlic-y goodness) topped with a thin slice of salmon sashimi. A lot of Sushi Garden/Town/California noobies don’t know about this because the restaurants don’t write a description as to what’s in the roll, nor do they provide pictures, but GET THIS. Yes, that was a command. You will NOT regret it. You may, however, regret having garlic breath after, so if you’re on a date, be sure to pack some gum/mints/breath spray.
Inari - $1.00 (7/7)
This sweet tofu pocket filled rice is absolutely delicious. The tofu lives up to how it’s supposed to taste - sweet and juicy. Have this without dipping it in soya sauce!
Tamago - $1.00 (5/7)
Because the tamago is quite thin, you can’t really taste the sweetness of it. Still a good piece of sushi, though. Soya sauce may be needed.
Ebi - $1.20 (7/7)
There’s not much to say about this, it’s just your typical piece of ebi nigiri. They do, however, put quite a bit of wasabi underneath, so if you can’t handle spice - you have been warned.
Toro - $1.30 (7/7)
As with all other sashimi, you definitely get your bang for your buck here. The pieces are huge!
AmaEbi - $1.80 (7/7)
Again, it tastes how it’s supposed to. You can safely say their sashimi are fresh, thus, food = awesome.
Hotate - $1.50 (7/7)
Fat, plump, juicy. Need we say more?
Masago - $1.30 (7/7)
They load this up! It can get quite messy. Be sure you either eat this all in one bite or have your plate right under your mouth to catch all the falling eggs!
Saba - $1.00 (7/7)
Can’t go wrong with this. Or any of their nigiri’s. Or roll’s. Or cooked item’s. Or sashimi.
I've been here 2-3 times already and it is really a great sushi joint to pass by when you are around the area. Prices are decent and food is very tasty. Sushi rolls aren't the best but they are still very good. The sashimi tastes alright and comes in big chunks which I like but does not taste very fresh. Tempura is nothing special. Dining experience was normal. Waiters take forever to take your order because the place is always packed but food comes at a decent rate. The seaweed for the cones were soft which I don't like. Overall average food, cheap prices, will come back whenever I am craving sushi and am around the area.
I am a sushi lover. Been for years. Sushi of high quality three times a month will not give me room and thought for pause. They have the best sushi quality price and value here. Often the diners (like staff) is Japanese and they giove you the 'we know what we are doing we are born doing this ' look. Great date or family restaurant sure
Everytime I drive by there is a line so we decided to see what the fuss was about. We already knew it wasnt authentic and run by Koreans We waited 1/2 hr to be seated. Service was horrible- served by a young kid who knew nothing about sushi. Tempura was thick and tasteless- tempura sauce was too sickly sweet, sushi was bleh and sashimi horrible. Never again. Nuff said. There are way better places and I really don't see why people line up for this place. Try authentic Japanese food and you'll never go back
I only made this account to say:
I AM ANGRY at some of the things other people are saying. Firstly, sure the sashimi isn't the best here, I actually never order it from experience, but don't just say this place is bad because you have only tried one thing. I love their seafood udon and all of their rolls are delish, their tempuras are pretty great too. And trust me, their service shouldn't have been the worst any of you people have gotten, right? The values are pretty solid considering what other sushi resturants charge and they ALWAYS tell everyone to go up to the front to pay the bill. What do you mean by CLEARLY GIVING THE BILL TO YOU? You have to pay up front and they give the CHANGE to you so you can leave a tip. Don't assume things if you're not sure.
I am also a regular at this place and sometimes, they DO make mistakes and the people have bad days, we're all human so we all have tempers too. Even if they do make a mistake like not call your name, you won't seem like one of those impatient people if you only politely ask, only if you yell do people think that. Don't get mad or assume you're the one that's right. Maybe you just spaced out in that one moment they called your name... Sometimes I do that and just ask whether I've been called or not. And also, sometimes they call your name weirdly and it sounds like something else I once mistakenly thought they called "Alice" when they actually just called my name.
This is some of the feedback I'm giving as a honest person and regular at this resturant, hope it helps future people thinking to eat at this restaraunt
Heard a lot of good things about this place, so we tried it on a busy Saturday night. At first impressions, the ambiance is so-so, much like a cafeteria-style Japanese place.
We ordered the three person sushi combo as well as assorted deluxe sashimi and miso soup. The miso soup was a bit too salty for my taste, but apparently that's the way they serve it in Japan (says my Japanese friend). Sashimi was good - definitely very fresh. The sushi rolls were tasty, particularly the scallop rolls, but the chef must not have been very experienced as many of the rolls fell apart very easily.
Service was ok... no frills here, but they did refill the tea and bring the food promptly.
Might come back if we're in the area.
This place is famous, but I usually go to the Sushi House further on Kingsway for cheap sushi.
I decided to try it based on previous reviews.
The Alaska roll was okay, it's basically an avocado roll with a thin slice of raw salmon on top of the roll, covered in a greasy creamy miso based sauce. The spicy tuna roll was okay, not spicy enough but the rolls have less rice and more filling which is always nice. The salmon nigiri pieces look large but they aren't, they are just sliced long and not very thick.
I found the food wasn't particularly tasty but it was edible, and I'm not sure exactly why but the wasabi didn't seem spicy at all.
Yes they have some different rolls at the $4 price range but they all seem to be made of deep fried ingredients which isn't my cup of tea.
Unlike others I found the service to be good, but then I tend to ask for what I want directly. The really good part about this place is that the items in the combo meals can be changed to something else if it's the same price.
Their sushi isn't oversized (the rolls are normal sized, the nigiri is a bit larger) and the prices aren't that low apart from the combo's, for these prices I'd rather go to a better quality place like Isami Sushi which is a few doors away and which serves much better sushi and food. Isami has lunch bento's that change daily.
Overall it's not horrible, but it's just not tasty either. Life is too short for mediocre sushi.
As other reviewers have mentioned, the service here is pretty poor. The problem isn't the servers, as they work pretty hard to get your order and bring the food to you, its the lack of servers.
Had to wait 20 minutes for me to wave them down to take my order, then another good wave and lookout for a server to get a refill once during my meal. Then when I wanted the bill, they asked me to come up to the front to pay when clearly other people were receiving their bill at their table.
Poor service, I only go during off peak hours to receive decent service, and even then its sketchy.
Food is good for your money I think, I find their alaska rolls pretty tastey.
This afternoon was my second visit to Sushi Garden. The first time was way before the renos and I remembered the service to be much better then. Luckily, today wasn't packed and there was no wait for a table. Today I ordered the spicy tuna don since I haven't had one in a long time. I couldn't believe how spicy it was and thought maybe it was just me since I've stopped eating spicy foods a year ago. All I could taste was hot sauce - not much flavor. Girlfriend A tried it too and said it was spicy.
I couldn't eat any more of it since the hot tea didn't do any help calming my on-fire taste buds. I basically had to pack more than 4/5 of it to go. I still gave it a 3-rating because it's not fair to base it on one menu item. I've had pretty good food here last time.
There was little service and we had to ask for more tea. She would come around and just refill cups on one side of the table making others having to ask for their refills another time. Even after we got the bill, my doggie-bag didn't make it back to me until I asked for it. (what if I didn't?)
Sure the space is bigger and more roomy, but it makes me believe that it's causing a bigger problem with service now, since there was only 2 servers (including the cashier) for the entire restaurant.
I've been here quite a few times. The food has always hit the mark at being decent, obviously not as good as authentic sushi places which I love, but it's still good. My personal favorite is the Alaska roll (complemented with nice cuts of sashimi). However, I've some some horrific experiences at this place as well.
First of all, it's always packed like mad during the dinner hours. Expect to wait 20~ minutes if you arrive there after 7pm. There's not a lot of seating area either so privacy is nonexistant. The staff are nice however, and I've never had a huge problem with flagging servers down and they are very helpful as long as you understand that they have like 50000, exaggeration of course, other customers to tend to at the same time (take-out, phone, cashier, packed dining room).
The worst experience at Sushi garden was one night when I decided I wanted to just order two Alaska rolls to go. Our number was given, 085 or something along those lines. After 20-30 minutes and seeing some tables come and go, it was getting extremely aggravating to still be standing in the middle of the restaurant. A few minutes later, I heard 086 getting called out and 092 getting put onto the counter. Honestly, I just wanted my Alaska rolls. After talking to the waitress, she apologized and told me she would check what was going on. It was apparent from the look of dismay and frustration on her face, as well as from my glances at the sushi bar, that the kitchen staff were really just screwing around and working to their own turtlish pace. I guess to them, a packed restaurant means you need to slow your pace down? Whatever.
I left 5 minutes later after finally getting my order a long with a random complementary salad for the wait. The only reason I am coming back to this place is because I believe this was an isolated incident and it's treated us well every other time.
I hear they have a special "Korean style Spicy Chirashi Don" that comes in an enormous bowl that is not on the menu. I'll probably try it next time I go.
Mrs. C and I were craving sushi after a movie, and we saw SG. It looked inviting from the outside. We wandered in and got a table. The menus were in tatters and the restaurant was not very clean, but hunger won out over discretion.
We ordered a few types of sushi and sashimi. One noteworthy item was the Hawaiian roll, which was a beef teriyaki roll with pineapple. It was very tasty, but disintegrated as soon as I picked up a piece. We also had the gigantic sashimi pieces, some decent nigiri sushi as well as some other rolls.
The ambience left a lot to be desired, and the service was terrible, but the sushi wasn't too bad. I am not sure if the food alone would bring me back, but I might return.
Try it if you like.
I've heard a lot about this place over the last few years, tried it for the first time at lunch today.
Indeed the menus were gross. Only got one between the four us, then 10 minutes later came the rest. First thing I didn't like is I didn't see any lunch box style combos. They have sushi combos that are just - sushi. Not much in the way of non-sushi food, so if you like to mix things up like I do this isn't the best place for you most likely. It's also a pain trying to figure out what to order.
So I got the roll combo, miso soup, and tuna sashimi. The roll combo and miso soup were fine, 3 star rating for them. The $8 order of sashimi was just ridiculously large. I really don't like large pieces of fish as sashimi. It's just wrong. Each piece needs to be cut in 3, so it's like a 27 piece order! Now I might not mind too much, but it was still a bit frozen, and quite frankly tasted gross. It came last and I'm just sitting there trying to choke down 27 pieces of half frozen disgusting sashimi. I mean I could have just went to the fish market and bought a half frozen tuna steak and it whole there, it was the same experience. The presentation is simply awful. So the order or sashimi brought my opinion of the food down greatly. I've eaten a lot of japanese and I don't think I've ever been that disgusted.
Service was sparse but not completely terrible.
Only good thing I can say is there is some value for the dollar as long as the food you get for it isn't gross.
Anyway there is no way I'd go back. I really think the metrotown area is hurting for good japanese places, they're all just cheap low class places, or just not well run. You need to look to another area to get decent japanese.
Food: had the Californnia and BC Roll Combo, edamame, and gyoza. everything tasted great. the sushi pieces were larger than average places and very fresh and tasty. edamame was not over salted as some places are.
Service: horrible...but that was to be expected after reading many of the reviews. as soon as we got in we went straight to the cashier to put our names down...i got that tip fr one of the reviewers! Thanks! b/c if we didnt do that, for sure none of the servers wouldve paid any attention to us or cared! our server forgot our miso soup...that stuff is premade! u just have to pour it into a bowl and bring it out! the servers are just very "blah". the dont look or act like they want to be there at all.
Ambiance: busy busy busy. small and cramped.
Overall: if it werent for the food, we wouldnt go back...and even when we do, i think we'd avoid the peak hours...the lack of service during the entire experience may stress me out too much to enjoy the food.
After multiple failed attempts @ arriving here for b4 the line stretches out the door, I've finally succeeded ~6:30pm. The wait thereafter was only ~5-10 min. The first round of evening diners are just clearing out. By 7pm, the wait becomes longer.
W/such glowing reviews, I really was looking forward to tasting all they had to offer & was making plans on the next meal even b4 getting seated. W/such a crowd daily, it must be exceptional! Or so I thought.
Fish is fresh. Cuts are generous. However, the current special white tuna's the only highlight. More fatty & creamy than the regular stuff. It did look like it's from a part of the belly, but the toro's extremely lacking in flavour & texture. The saba's bland but ikura's good.
Rolls are huge. It tasted like I had nothing but rice though evidently, there were plenty of content. The papaya crab roll had bare visible traces of papaya, while the lightly battered stick of artificial crabmeat's very visible & plentiful. At least the tempura batter made this tolerable. The spicy tuna tempura roll is a definite avoid. The tuna tempura's too dry. The nice spicy sweet sauce topping the roll couldn't even help to make it less so.
The tempura batter is light & crispy. The dry & seemingly recooked/overcooked shrimp tempura tasted of Chinese deep fried shrimp. The other tempura items were great.
Udon is perfect in taste & texture. Gyoza, however, can afford to be pan fried a little longer. Skin's nice & thin, but one side was nearly undercooked, while the flat side was only lightly browned but still too soft.
You can be filled for relatively little $ spent. The highest marked nigiri is @$1.80 though uni is "current priced" if avail.
Service is fine & relatively speedy. Small, so recommended in parties of 1-4 at most. Parking@back, while it's metres in front.
Overall, not worth a revisit on my part for the rush & then the possible wait time--though fish is fresh, it still left me dissatisfied.
Alright, so this place has been one of my favourites for a really long time. I know, from reviews I've seen, the service is straight crap but I try to look past it most of the times. I used to come here 2-3 times a week just because of sushi cravings and the large portions to satisfy my tummy. The big difference is the staff and the time, which before, I used to go during odd hours like 3-5pm.
I'm practically a regular there, and they started getting new servers. Okay, not a big deal right? Well, boy was I wrong. I know two servers who recognize me by name and face and they're the best. Quick, polite, and efficient at what they do. But this time, it was during their busy dinner service and it was packed. I noticed most the servers were not the usual ones, so I casually walked up to put my name in and sat down. I've had past experiences where if you stand outside, they don't even bother calling your name outside and just skip right past you.
So, while I was there with my boyfriend and we waited and waited and waited... The short Asian male server said it would take about 25-30 minutes, so eh, we waited. We heard many names being called out, but not once my name. I didn't want to be one of those overly impatient customers who starts lashing out so I just waited for a few more seats. I mean, there were a few people ahead of us so what's the worry?
My god, then I see the old couple that came in just 10 minutes ago get a seat before us and now I started getting irritated. We've been waiting for nearly an hour...(I kept count, not joking in the slightest.) I went up and asked what happened to our spot and the other waiters and waitresses were trying to figure out what happened. Then the one who took my name came out and "angrily" yelled at me saying he called MY name 20 minutes ago! 20 minutes!!! Are you kidding me? I'm not deaf, nor was I listening to any music. I was sitting right there, watching them clean tables and everything! I did not hear anyone call my name. Everything was all korean or names that weren't even remotely close to mine. Furious, I tried to tell him I didn't hear my name being called at all. He gave me attitude and was all pissed at me like I was the one who was trying to give him a hard time.
Honestly, I would advise anyone to go when it's not insanely busy. These guys can't handle it on their own, and often screw up orders or forget to call someone's name. Of course, once in a while, that one waiter would be working and service would be a bit better, but I wouldn't take the risk. Too many times have I tried going for dinner and getting my night ruined because of one of their bad attitudes. The food is usually quite good, nothing crazy but great portions. Last night's tuna... Well... More than gooey. It was kinda gross but my boyfriend choked it down with his coke.
There's nothing wrong with coming back to this place, as it still is one of my favourites. Just don't bother going past 7pm. It's not worth the hour long wait. Nor is it worth getting a faceload of bad attitude. Seriously.
They have expanded to accomodate more people. There were lineups with people waiting outside before the renovation. After the renovation they have people sitting on the bench beside the window.
Dining in can be a problem, so we go there during non-peak hours. Service was good. Atmosphere was decent and place was clean.
Food was good. Prices were cheap. Would suggest going there.
I've been to Sushi Garden on multiple occasions and find the experience only mediocre. Whenever I bring new people to this restaurant they find the fruit sushi very amusing and appetizing. I usually go with my bf, and he loves this place b/c the sashimi is fairly fresh and reasonably priced. My only qualm with this place is that there never seems to be enough waitresses..leaving the ones that do work there flustered and frustrated I imagine. The decor of this restaurant is also lacking..but I suppose that's how they keep the prices down. Overall, I'll probably frequent this sushi place more in the future when I make the move to Burnaby.
I was just finishing work and had a massive craving for some Takoyaki. Thinking about sushi places aroung my area Sushi Garden came to mind... what a bad descision.
I had called them around 8pm and placed my order of 2 Takoyaki appetizers (I was really craving) the girl on the other end told me it should be ready in around 30mins I take a pretty leisurely drive there but still arrive 8 mins early went in and let them know about my order/paid and was told it should be ready in about 10 mins. Cool! In ten mins time I can enjoy some tasty Takoyaki! 10 mins go by and nothing. 20 mins go and I think yeah they are busy thats cool I'll give them another 10. Half hour I politely let the girl know that I'm still waiting for my Takoyaki. She tells me she'll find out whats going on for me... apparently orders got mixed up and my Takyoyaki will be ready in 10 mins and that she will come find me when they are done.
ANOTHER HALF HOUR GOES BY!!!!!! I've already witness a couple of walk ins get tables as well as placing tako out and getting order before mine. I go up and once again politely ask her whats going on with my order? She goes in to "check" again and comes back with they "burnt" them new batch coming up right now. 5 mins wait. I stand right by the cash register area and what do you know 5 mins the food comes out hahah NOT A CHANCE!!! but hey I think I'll give them another 5mins since the girl that was helping me clearly was now avoiding me by going around pouring water at every table slowly anyways.
I finally get her attention and before I can try to start a refund so I can get the hell out of there and finally it arrives. Angry and hungry is something I don't enjoy being so I take it along with their no expression sorry and leave. Total time spent: 1hr 20mins for 2 (pre)orders of Takoyaki
Worst part was when I got back to my back I wanted to calm down my craving a bit only to find that they were cold. I know they are known for bad service but I really thought a small order that was placed in advance couldn't possibly go this terrible. Never will I spend my money there again. I rather pay people to watch me jump face first into a brick wall repeatedly then give my money to this place.
This use to be one of my favorite sushi places. However, it seems like there is always a wait, so I usually order take out now.
Overall, I think the food is decent for the price. The portions are very generous. Lately, the portions are getting smaller though.
The tempura is fairly good. I usually get the party trays, and I find that the variety and the price is awesome.
For a quick and decent sushi, I would definately recommend this place.
We ordered a dynamite roll, alaska roll, unagi sushi, gomae, chicken kaarage and the sushi/sashimi combo. Fish was fresh and the pieces were large! We were there early (about 5) and were seated immediately. Waited about 5 minutes for food to arrive. Will probably skip the appies next time (gomae was bland and the kaarage was greasy) but everything else was great! We'll be back.