Clean, modern place for Japanese sashimi and sushi rolls
Sushi Garden = Sushi Town = Sushi California.
mr. shin who worked at sushi garden as a main sheff for years opened his own restaurant (sushi california) so it's pretty obvious what you can expect.
best bang for your buck but bad service (which is understandable.. they are famous for understaffing so they can give you the best value for your money).
sushi is fresh (high turnover) and just huge compared to other japanese restaurants.
i had BC combo and it was very good and so cheap.. i believe i paid like $8 or something and i couldn't even finish it.. now that's the VALUE meal.
this place is usually jam packed so try to avoid peak hours.
and should clean better.. i went to washroom and it was pretty dirty.
I usually take out from here once a week, since I live only 10 minutes away. I never eat in for a reason. The service is absolutely HORRIBLE. I ask for water and I never get it. I ask for more tea and I never get it. Sometimes it takes forever to even get your food because the chefs are concentrating on take out orders first. Seriously, your customers dining in need to eat too!
I've come to wonder if they have changed some of their sushi chefs in the last month or so. Everytime I open my take out box all the rolls are near falling a part. The taste is the same, but the quality has changed. I suggest for everyone who wants to eat here to get their order TO GO!
Having lived in Tokyo for 5 years, I am a sushi officianado and could not be more particular with respect to freshness, presentation and serving sizes. Sushi California gets my five-star rating in these three areas. As for service, well they're not the friendliest bunch and they don't keep the cleanest tables & floors, but life is dirty! I eat there 3 or 4 times a week, as I live within walking distance. I have NEVER had a bad meal there...and like everyone else says, their spicy tuna/salmon sashimi is the absolute best...HUGE portion; INCREDIBLY delicious...same goes for "standard" sashimi...none of this one bite in your mouth kind of slice either; generous portions and SUPER fresh, because of the extremely high turnover in there. They are ALWAYS busy, and yes -- parking might be a problem, but park around back on Whiting Way and walk in through the McDonald's parking lot just a few feet down the road. DEFINITELY worth a less-than-pristine (not filthy; just too busy to keep it spotless I presume) environment. If you're looking for quiet, candlelight dining -- well, it's not the place...but if that's what you want, order for take out and bring it home to your own candles! This sushi spot tops em all in Vancouver/Coquitlam/Burnaby/Surrey for my money! Gonna call in my take out order right now!
My daughter and I eat here when we are in the area. The food and the service are always excellent. The chefs are very professional. They waitresses are on the ball. I can't say which item is my favorite, but I can say they make an outstanding Kappa roll. The cucumber is thinly sliced and they put wasabi in the roll, which most places do not. The dynamite roll is excellent and the Tuna Sashimi is melt in your mouth.
I have never had a bad experience at Sushi California and I highly recommend giving it a try.
the rolls/sashimi/kitchen food is amazing! and the value is equally amazing! the service is always polite but sometimes slow, which is understandable considering how ridiculously busy they always are. if you get take-out, it's always ready super quickly and always with the appropriate sauces, etc. i love this place and would totally recommend it!
the food is actually better than expected. i got the spicy tuna tempura roll and spicy tuna cone... i was impressed with both of them. something different. want to try more of their food. service is bad. theyre not friendly. it feels like ur not welcome in that place. haha the place is kinda ran down... haha but definitely will go back for their food... maybe for takeout.
The price is average, about $15 per person. Portion is quite big.
The spicy tuna sashimi is the best! The sauce is so yummy, a little sweet (not like some other places that only give you spice till you cant taste the sashimi)
Unagi sushi also good!
I have to admit, it was a pretty good place to go for sushi when it just opened; the sushi was made nicely with generous proportions. HOWEVER, now it's just disappointing. They are always under staff, or even if they aren't there really is something wrong with their waitresses, they take their time as if customers are invisible.
I eat there all the time because my family loves that place but I really wouldn't recommend this place to people looking for a comfortable meal.
Service: understaffed and slow at bringing the food even though it is ready on the counter. one time I ordered 3 combos and 2 came and the last one came after we were done the 2 (even though it was sitting on the counter for 15min!).
Cleanness: this should go under service too but there was a fly on my salmon sushi so I told the waitress and they grudgingly replaced a new piece for me, which was smaller and thinner! also watch out for whats floating inside your tea and check if your plates are clean before using them.
Food: no complaints, decent, there really isn't anything near coq/lougheed area with this type of quality in food for the low price.
I've eaten at numerous sushi restaurants and this one is by far the worst. The sushi rolls were sloppily made and falling apart, and they were warm! The food came about 2 minute after ordering it, which means it was pre-made and not done to order. We had the BC roll, dynamite cone, gyoza, ebi sunomono, negitori roll, and a chopped scallop roll. None of these items were in any way edible to anyone except those who know little about how proper sushi is meant to taste. Furthermore, the appetizers came out -last- and we had to remind the waitress to bring the sunomono because she had forgotten it.
The food was just absolutely disgusting and I wouldn't recommend this place to anyone. It's unfortunate that shitty sushi restaurants are being given good reviews and are recommended only because people these days don't know what good sushi tastes like.
We ate around 4:30 on a Saturday. After leaving the restaurant I promptly threw up on the sidewalk. Bad food, bad service, and I've honestly never even heard of anyone who could screw up an ebi sunomono so badly (HOW IS THIS POSSIBLE??). Never eat here. Ever.
Sushi California has always been a sushi place that I can constantly rely on. I first went to try it out after many people in the area recommended it to me. I was glad they did because they make good sushi for a good price. The only downside to their sushi is they're not wrapped very well. Their rice is a little on the soft side, so picking the sushi up with chopsticks can be quite a challenge sometimes. Otherwise, if you're looking for sushi with a good taste, it's here. The taste is more on the stronger side; they use more sauces such as, tobiki and okonomi, whereas other Japanese restaurants may not.
The food from their menu that I have tried and would definitely recommend:
And one of their specialties that are frequently ordered, as I've seen, is salmon sashimi covered in a thick kimchi type of sauce. I forget the name, but I'm sure the waitress will know.
If you're looking for a grilled Japanese food (terayaki, tako maki....) then I would choose a different restaurant. Their chicken terayaki is small and dried out, and hard to chew.
Also, be aware that Sushi California is a take-out sort of restaurant. Their lunch and dinner times are very busy and you will usually have to wait 15-20 minutes. The staff is attentive, but quite brisk and rude at times.
Overall, I would recommend this restaurant to any sushi lovers who are looking for a quick bite!
As soon as you enter this place you are greeted with a "Fishy" stink which can drive people away.
The waiters are not very cooperative or helpful.
The sushi was badly assembled and crumbled before i could eat. The tempura had the stink of over used oil.
Tuna was in clunky chunks - that was a new one for me - since I thought sushi was an art of slicing fish as thinly as possible so that it cooks in your mouth.
Horrible experience - never again.
The title says it all. Amazing value at this place, quality of the food is good. Sashimi's always fresh, well prepared, generous portions. Generous with the uni cones too, alaska roll with sauce on top is awesome!
Now for the bad side, the service is decent. Nothing special here, they're always rushing to the next table and trying to get the next group seated. Waitresses are under-staffed.
If you have a group larger than 4 and plan on eating dinner there on Fri-Sunday, prepare to wait up to an hour for your table.
This place is great when it's not too crowded. Too little tables.
Another note to improve is the washrooms, yuck.
Alaska roll, spicy tuna sashimi and smoked salmon cream cheese roll! Try those three dishes and you'll know why I love Sushi California. The sushi chefs are very friendly, service is decent, which is understandable because they are always busy and you get a lot of value for your money. I would definitely recommend this place to anyone who loves sushi!
it's like sushi meets fast food.
you can't really expect too much of the place
it has better sushi than inside the lougheed mall so what you get is people going there during lunch.
if you are going there for the first time, don't go during lunch, you should expect to see a lineup
it is way better if you go with just one person
if you go there with bunch of people let's say, 3+ ? then of course you'd probably have to wait
the amount you get is more than other restaurants. but the quality .. hmm... if you are just satisfied to be full then yea sure. it's good to go
but don't expect some award winning dinner or something like that
the place seems to be always busy and the waitresses are just scrambling around.
everybody thinks this place has bad service.
i think so too. for a place with constant line-ups, i still get what i want.
sure i may get it after i ask the waitresses couple of times.
my advice is, don't expect the waitress to come and ask you if there's anything you'd like. silence doesn't get you anything here
probably because the place is just way too understaffed and just too busy.
overall? yea i still go there because i always feel stuffed when i'm done
some food come out fast and some doesn't.
rolls and nigiris come out fast but sometimes the kitchen food may be slow or even forgotten
if you are looking for fine-dining. this isn't the place for you
Responding "justasophomore" review: yes I am one of those high schoolers who blows $20 at this restaurant with my friends but I will no more.
I have been a regular patron at this establishment and have known for some time about the poor service they're waitresses give but always chose to ignore it as I just substituted it without giving them tip. Should I feel guilty for doing that? NO! You should give them tip for great service, nothing mediocre or below. My last venture into the restaurant however gave me such horrendous service that it encourages me to look elsewhere for a good sushi bar.
I went there on a Thursday night with a friend and as as expected the place was rather full. The waitress took our name and told us to be expected to wait 15 minutes, I knew to expect that coming on that day and time so I didn't mind waiting. After about 15 minutes the waitress came back and asked us if we would be ok sitting at the bar, we said yes and the waitress responded with "ok, let me just clean it up and i'll come back to you". Everything is going fine so far. What I DIDN'T EXPECT was for two customers to enter the restaurant WITHOUT a reservation or taking down their name and just walk in and TAKE OUR SEATS. The waitress came back to us saying there was a problem, I asked her what that problem was (though I was full aware of it) and she said she didn't know. "[email protected]!!" i thought! and told the waitress that my friend and I had been waiting patiently for 15 minutes and she should get the two VERY RUDE patrons who took our seats to wait like everyone else. She does. UNBELIEVABLY she moves them to BETTER seats! I tell her that WE derserve the table seats! not them! she shrugs us off, stating shes too shy(wth?!). Am I done compaining yet? NO! It continues.
When my friend and I submit ourselves to the bar seats our (new) waitress doesn't bother coming back to take our orders. I glance at her, put my hand up, nada. By this time the Sushi Chef infront of us (being at the bar...) notices our frustration and asks us what we want. What a pleasant surpise (thats not sarcasm)! We give him our order and he gives us priority by delivering everything quite fast. I express much gratitude to him but as usual, leave without paying tip.
Due to the sushi chef's service I will return if a friend invites me over there or something but NEVER under my own initiative. They need to hire extra servers...actually no, they need to hire an experienced waiter/waitress (but I'd prefer a guy) who is NOT a recent high school graduate and will be able to show some balls around the workplace by not getting pushed by other customers and putting the young waitresses in their place.
Good value, good portions and good food (though sometimes the sushi is made a bit sloppy so it falls apart in your hand) just ABOMINABLE (bad) service. Such bad service I refuse to let myself go there unless invited. Unfortunately there isn't a better alternative in Burnaby (Sushi Garden doesn't count...) for sushi at this value. My only advice for those in the area is to give Korean food a shot, a block away near the Hannareum lies Dae-Ji. Give it a shot.
As others have said, service is terrible. The servers get paid $8.00 (saw their advertisement on Craigslist, and I know someone who worked there before), most of whom are high school kids. They really don't care about service quality, as long as they get paid.
Food is okay, yes. But there are other sushi restaurants that are much better, with superb service. This restuarant is for high school kids who just blow off $20.00 for anything.
I don't blame the servers or the cooks; it is a hard enviroment in which to work, and there are never enough servers.
I blame the owner. Probably underpays the cooks, and NEVER EVER has enough servers. Hey owner! You need more than 3 servers when all of your 15 tables are full, with 3 more parties waiting to be served!
i come here often because of the good prices. beef yakisoba tuna gomae and spicy salmon sashimi are my favourite dishes here. but the waitresses are hard to get a hold of even though its an open dining room. i am a regular just because of the prices.
Just ordered sushi to go from this place and found it disgustingly dirty to even just sit in the waiting chair. I ordered california roll and salmon roll (tastes o.k.) but waited 25 minutes for it. It was sitting on the counter forever and the waitresses seemed to just look at it, pass it by, then one would check it, then leave...then another would put it in a bag...then leave...and then finally I had to go ask them if it was ready and they looked confused. Poor, poor, service. Would recommend Bentei Sushi in North Burnaby waaay better sushi, waaay better service. Not worth a return visit.
The service in this restaurant is notoriously bad. The sushi is not outstanding. The only plus is the generous portions of fish. Therefore I never dine in and I always order 1/2 hour in advance for pick-up.
I was organizing a party at my house and most of my guests insisted we get large trays from Sushi California. So I called one day in advance and ordered about $200 worth of sushi, and I told them I'd pick it up at 3pm the next day.
The next day I went to pick it up. At around 2:55pm they call my house to say that the order can't be completed because there's not enough rice. I arrive at the restaurant, and the waitress tells me the unfortunate news. I was, of course, fuming. Then she has the gall to tell me that they called me. And I ask her, "when?" She says, amazingly with a straight face, "five minutes ago." So I asked them, "are you telling me you started on my huge order 5 minutes ago?" And she says "we'll give you a $20 discount." I was just thinking about getting a refund and going to another restaurant, but my guests stupidly insisted on Sushi California. I don't get some people.
Go up to Fuji Sushi up a few blocks instead. The service is very professional and the food is refined and delicate, just as sushi should be.
I this definitely the place to go for quantity. The quality is definitely not the best sushi out there but for the price that you pay it is definitely worth it. The food is good, especially if you want bang for your buck.
The one thing that brings the whole restaurant down is the service. Not only are there not enough servers, the ones that are there are some of the most incompetent waitresses I've ever met. Also, the restaurant is small so if you go at peak times you will have to wait.