Submitted Sunday, March 21, 2010 - 11:00pm [Dine in]
I have been to this restaurant about a dozen times and find the food consistently of reasonably good quality and the service prompt and friendly.
The bento boxes are good deals. The servings are generous. These bento boxes are not available after 9:00 pm though.
There is a wide selection of sushi and sashimi on the menu, more than enough for me to choose from even without looking the specials that are posted on the bulletin board.
This is usually a busy restaurant with a short line-up. My guess of why I haven't seen a long line-up is that there are quite a few other restaurants close by in the area.
One odd and quite annoying thing seems to happen at this restaurant. The server would ask "no change?" when you pay for the bill. Well, if the amount handed over is close to the total bill, it would make sense. However, at several times, this was asked even when the change due would be in excess of 30% of the price of the meal. Example from yesterday: I was handing over a $50 bill for a $35 meal and the server asked repetitively "no change?". It was as if she was surprised that I would like to have some change back.
We will go back for sure as Sushiyama is a quick place for getting some good Japanese food. It is not a place where you will want to look for the ambiance of a refined Japanese restaurant though. I am also remembering one time during lunch when one piece of American pop music was playing over and over again and no one seemed to notice until I pointed it out to the server. There is always something quirky and lively about this place...
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Submitted Thursday, March 12, 2009 - 1:02am [Dine in]
The shio ramen is outstanding. It has one of the best tasting tonkotsu. The service has also been outstanding and much improved since my first visit.
The chashu nigiri is not great, but edible when hungry. The great shio does make up for everything else.
The waiteress with the generous smile is wonderful. She is nice to all the customers and seems to take pride in doing a good job.
The chashu is now lean but not too dry. So, it seems that Benkei has redeemed itself fantastically. Kintaro may have to watch out. Motomachi can still sit comfortably for its superior food quality, but Benkei is a competitive value choice.
I will go back to Benkei for more shio. Tasted good to the last drop. The ramen is quite plain though, and the cost can quickly add up with the extras. That is not an issue because the shio tastes fine without the extras.
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Submitted Saturday, January 24, 2009 - 3:20pm [Dine in]
Haven't tried the delivery service yet, which sounds very tempting, but the food there is good enough and the ambiance pleasant enough that I actually want to drive the 10 minutes to eat at the restaurant. The pleasant J-pop, or Japanese soft-rock background music adds to the eating experience. Have been there 6 or 7 times now since my wife and I randomly gave it a try. The menu and the food does not feel totally authentic Japanese, but should pleasantly cater to the taste of Vancouverites. The deep fried chicken wings are light and crispy. The ramen has more ingredients than any other ramen place I have even seen. So you get quantity and quality. The Nikkyu salted ramen soup base generally tastes good, but it did surprise me by tasting richer than usual once and lighter than usual at another time. That is probably not noticeable to those who are not paying attention. You get great deals on the uni, sea urchin eggs. If you are a fan of sea urchin eggs, this reason alone is worth a visit. Somehow I find the outside appearance not very inviting, but once inside, it feels nice. That may explain why it is usually not as full of customers as I would expect it should be.
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