Sushi on The Drive
Dear hubby and the kids were visiting the inlaws and I had most of Sunday to myself. Decided to spend some time on Commercial Drive - practiced some bowling at Grandview Lanes and went for a nice walk down the Drive.
I decided on sushi for my evening meal. Non Traditional Thanksgiving fare.
The menu looked extensive and I walked into Britannia Sushi.
The hostess was prompt, but not overly welcoming. She gave me an okay table (I like the fact that, as I single diner, I was not immediately placed either by the front door or by a washroom). She gave me my menus and I spent some time perusing.
One thing I appreciated was that there was many choices of Bento boxes. I like to have small portions of several items and a diner could get many combinations of favourite items.
I opted for the Chicken Terriyaki Chicken/Sashimi box for $9.95. I also ordered a Gamae salad for around 2.95 or so and a small sake.
I liked the gamae salad, a reasonable portion, and the focus was definately the spinach with a lighter sauce and sesame sprinkles. Tasty.
The bento box was okay. I was not impressed with the chicken as the terriyaki sauce was just smoothed onto pre-cooked chicken. It was only okay. I would prefer the terriyaki sauce cooked onto or with the chicken. The tempura, sashimi and California roll were all good.
The saki was served a bit too hot, the small container almost burning my fingers. I let it cool down a bit and then enjoyed it with my meal.
The ambiance was really nothing special. Functional, a but run down. It could have used a bit of a cleanse. The washroom was kind of grungy, but it was stocked.
Bill came to just under $19.00 (including tax, but before tip).
I might return only if I'm in the area and particularly craving sushi.
The main reason why I come to britannia sushi is because I work near it. If I got some time to spare and want sushi I rather get it at britannia sushi, but lately they haven't been really good on some things. One thing, I notice when I am waiting for my order is that the guy who prepares and makes the sushi doesn't really wash his hands after touching other things. Another thing I notice is that he generally talks over the food and chews gum. I find that this is not worth eating her twice a week.
A few poster back said that there was a little boy who runs around in the restaurant: I know that little boy as he uses the goes to school at britannia. He is sometimes a handful and is pretty much harmless. This is a family owned restaurant and it seems the WHOLE family is always there. The family literally lives at the restaurant.
So I been back a few times, but not as much as before. The service is great. The staff is friendly (except the sushi chef) and the ambiance is pretty good.
Reason to go here in one word: cheap.
For 5 bucks for a meal that gets you really full it is literally cheaper than eating at home. The sushi is not that great, not horrible..but what can you really expect for 5 bucks?
Same with the service. It really is terrible as far as manners go but quick... when you are literally giving them the change from your pocket to pay for dinner/lunch do you really think you need to have them smile at you?
I haven't noticed the foodsafe stuff, never there long enough to use the washrooms. I have noticed the kids are always there and it doesn't bother me (although judging from their yawns and sighs I think it may bother them)
When you are hungry, too lazy to cook, not wanting to spend much money and just want to eat and leave, it's perfectly fine. If you want great service and excellent sushi, dont expect to pay 5 bucks on commercial for it.
Where to begin...
There was attitude from the waitresses the second I walked in the door. If you hate your job so much, just quit already. Don't make your customers endure it! The lethargy and obvious displeasure of the staff just cast grey over the whole place. The fact that they're all this way makes me wonder how they are treated by the management. I know waitressing can be a tough gig sometimes but they were truly dismal.
The food was served promptly but some of the rolls were falling apart. This is a big no no if you want to be a reputable sushi place. Judging by the number of people in there though, they seem to be indifferent to the quality; but for someone whose favorite food is sushi, I know the difference. I also ordered a tuna donburi and the rice it was served on was not fresh or even hot, some of it was even somewhat dry. They obviously used the same rice that they use for making hand rolls in the donburi, which is sheer laziness - and they shouldn't be using such stale rice to make rolls anyway. Does the concept of vinegaring your rice not factor in, Britannia? Your rice is like eating glue.
Price is standard. If you live at that end of the Drive it's probably the most convenient sushi place to get to, but it's definitely not among the better ones. They offer brown rice now as a replacement, but judging by how their white rice was falling off of the rolls I have my reservations.
The management of this place also owns "Broadway Sushi" and the layout, quality, and bad attitudes are basically the same. Please improve your service before you branch out, thanks!
After reading the terrible reviews, we were rather hesitant about going there, but there was no need to be. We went with friends for lunch on Saturday, four people in all, and had a wonderful meal. One of us is vegetarian and another (me) is a newbie to sushi, so we went for Vegetable dragon roll, Mango avocado roll, Unagi roll, and Tuna and avocado roll. After that lot disappeared in record time, we had Salmon roll, Yam tempura and Vege tempura. This was actually more food than four people needed, but it was all so good that we ate every last scrap of it.
The waitress was charming and efficient, and the bill was a really pleasant surprise. All that excellent food plus some particularly fragrant tea cost under $40, including taxes. The washrooms were clean and looked as if they had been recently renovated, the banquette seating was comfortable, and nobody was hurrying us to eat up and leave, although they were quite busy.
If you're looking for a fancy upscale restaurant with prices to match, this isn't it. But if you want wonderful food in a very pleasant setting at amazing prices, try Britannia Sushi.
We'll be going there again soon and often. We intend to work our way through the whole menu.
I have dined in many Japanese restaurants in Vancouver and I finally found what I was looking for.
A particular salmon roll with a unique spice that completely is worth the the 8 dollars they charge.
The Red Dragon Roll.
I highly recommend it to any salmon lovers. The chef at Britannia hit his mark on that one. I'm not a huge fan of much else, although as a student some years ago i practically lived off the bento box menu.
So, it's my birthday and there is nothing I wanted more than the mythical RDR(red dragon roll). I was prepared to deal will less than adequate service for what I was craving. My partner took me there, we love the drive. We could have gone to many restaurants on Commercial. But I was determined.
After ordering our RDRs we received our tea and water. They were quickly consumed, but never refilled. The chef was fast, which I love, but the waitress brought us out two green avocado and yam tempura rolls. Green? Red!
I told her that she had made a mistake and that these were not the things we ordered.
A simple mistake. She told me that the food had already been prepared and that it was good for me and I should just eat it. My partner is allergic to avocado and considering this is my birthday dinner.......? Really?
I asked her to please return it for what we ordered. Her response was weirdly apologetic and she continued to say that these rolls had already been made, so ........ I guess I should just enjoy it. Even after I explained that one of us would get hives in his mouth. After much talk I convinced her to take one of the rolls back and replace it with the RDR. Again the chef was fast. We ate the singe roll between us leaving the green shame roll sitting untouched on the table.
When the bill arrived she charged me for BOTH green rolls of shame. 12 dollars on top of the 8 for the single RDR. Birthday dinner officially ruined. I marched inside, paid only for what I ate and when it came time to tip i reached across the bar slipping the money to the chef.
I seriously hate the service of this joint but the RDR cannot be beat. Check it out. If you can take some frustration along with the meal.
Or heck, just get it to go, like I do now.
Sure this isn't great sushi. But it's entirely decent sushi. And you can get 18 pieces of that entirely decent sushi for $6.
Beat that with a stick.
Also, a pleasant patio. And the service may not be super-duper friendly, but they take your order accurately and they reliably deliver reasonably quickly.
In short, I eat there weekly and am always glad to have the option. Whenever I get back to Vancouver from time away, it always seems to be the first place I go.
I used to go there about once a month. Nothing special about the place, just reasonably priced o.k. sushi etc. It's not exactly pristine, and the service was nothing special, but the last time I was there I'd simply had enough.
After my meal, my waitress (the one with the long black straight hair) wasn't anywhere to be found, so I walked up to the cashier to pay, like I've had to do before. I found my waitress on the phone, not talking, a guess waiting for a call. She hangs up (while I'm waiting) and makes another call. Waits, waits, no answer. She puts the phone down, and makes ANOTHER call! Waits, waits, no answer again. Finally she puts the phone down, and without so much as looking me in the eye or saying a single word...
...she grabs the money out of my hand, throws it in the till, slams it shut and walks away. No thank you, no change, no nothing.
Yes, I would have left a tip even with the sub-par service, but this was the last straw. In a way she did me a favour because now I've found some better Japanese places on the Drive.
It's a family run place, and the staff don't exactly hide the fact that they don't want to be there. And you know what? I don't want to be there either. So long, folks.
Britannia Sushi is great for a discount sushi joint. The tuna, yam, and salmon rolls have nice thick thumb sized pieces of fish (or yam) in them and the quality is consistently high. It's obviously a family run place and one gets the impression that the staff would rather be doing something else. The soft rock on the radio is a bit annoying but you probably shoudn't be coming here expecting an authentic Japanese experience. Some previous reviewers mentioned poor hygiene and that may well be the case but I haven't seen anything remarkably concerning, however, there have been a couple of occasions of stomach distress a couple of hours after eating there.
It's the kind of service where they are talking to you, but looking over your shoulder. You get the feeling that they couldn't care less if you were there or not. Bordering on downright rude. Food was good, sushi tasted fresh, veggie gyoza was nice.
Absolutely terrible customer service! It took over 15 minutes just to get tea and water. I ordered a vegetable teriyaki bento box and was highly unimpressed. The side "salad" had 5 teeny pieces of iceberg lettuce... upon inspecting my veggie dish I noticed the extra pieces of lettuce were indeed included in my meal, however, they were cooked with the stir fry. Mmmm. Cooked iceberg lettuce.
Shortly afterwards I received a message from the friend I had dined with informing me that they had become sick from the meal we had. Gotta love that MSG!
I will never be returning and highly suggest you consider an alternative restaurant.
My husband were excited to find a sushi place that delivers. We were both feeling under the weather, not wanting to cook, not wanting to go out, and both of us having colds the idea of pizza didn't sound thrilling. Miso and sushi was what we wanted.
So we found this place and gave them a call.
First thing my husband experienced was the 15 minutes it took to explain our address to them. He spelled the name of our street to them 4 times before the girl on the other end of the phone handed our call to someone else... where my husband got to spell the name of the street to the next person another 3 times.
After placing our order, we were told it would take 30 minutes.
35 minutes later we get a phone call from the driver. My husband spelled the name of our street to him again, and attempted to get the driver to understand that our street was between 4th and 5th. The concept was not something the driver understood. "4th and 5th. between 4th and 5th. No, the streets. 4th and 5th. between them." and spelled the name of the street a final time.
The driver never showed up.
An hour had passed from the time we placed the call and my husband called to see what the hold up was. She did not ask who he was or our address to confirm which order he was speaking of, she just said "on it's way".
15 minutes pass and a girl arrives. I mention to her that we called over an hour ago. She said "yes, we are busy." She made zero apologies. I asked if the food was fresh, was it out of the restaurant for too long and she assured me it came straight here. In the next breath she said that the other driver went back because he couldn't find our address, and that she brought it over... thus: the food was far from fresh.
Tempura: soggy and slightly warmer than room temperature.
Gyoza: same as tempura.
Dynamite roll: really? you expect someone to eat that and *not* get food poisoning?
Beef teriyaki roll: *gag*
miso: slightly above room temperature.
All in all, not edible.
So I phoned Britannia Sushi back and told them that the food took too long to arrive here, and that it was awful. I politely let her know that most of the food was not edible. She spoke with her manager and told me that next time, they will give me 30% off of our order.
Really? Considering the fact that 100% of our food was garbage, I told her that we wanted a refund.
She said flat out "No. That is not our policy."
Just don't bother.
Been a number of times and they are consistently good. The sushi is better tasting and presented betterm compared to others on the drive. I find other spots put too much rice in the rolls while very obviously skimping on the fish. Britannia doesn't. And the wasabi is actually hot and the ginger plentiful. These are two very important and pivotal factors in my impression of sushi joints.
Ordered the sushi special for my wife and I - California rolls, yam tempura rolls, and tuna rolls with miso soup. A sweet deal for 5.95. Also ordered the unagi roll, salmon avacado roll, and dynamite roll. All very tasty and "melt-in-your-mouth" peices. The waitress was polite, quick, and stone-faced but not going out of her way to provide outstanding service. This was perfect and expected.
Got all for $21 and change which included the always awesome HST. Thanks again to Scampbell and also to all of you who voted him back. I digress....
A great deal for good tasting sushi. It's far from my favorite spot in town but it is close to home, tasty and very affordable.
If I had the option of rating a 3.5 up there for food, I would. That would put this between Solid and Incredible, which in my mind is Good.
Britannia Sushi is an okay place with great low prices. The food is decent, and there are lots of options. You may feel i little gross after eating some of the dishes, especially the tempura and chicken. The waitresses and staff are quite rude and rarely acknowledge you unless you are paying them or ordering food. They tend to chat with their friends seeming to talk about the customers, or mope at the counter obviously unhappy about being there. The Ambiance is very average. Nothing special at all. Its usually dirty with food left on the tables and gum stuck under them. As i said before, I go there quite often, but i can't say i like it.
Food- Really good. I've never had something I hated and there's a large variety of veggie rolls. The bento boxes are tasty and unlike some places the tempura is always fresh and piping hot. I always tell them I'm vegan and never find roe attached to my sushi.
Service- meh. There's a few waitresses that are okay, but there's a couple of spoiled brats that wait the tables too.
Value- This place is cheap cheap cheap. Usually I go and get stuffed on ten bucks worth of food, or satisfyingly full on 7 or 8 bucks.
Ambiance - Once in awhile I forget to not look at this place. Seriously just keep your eyes forward and concentrate on the conversation with your dining partner. There's gum stuck to the ceiling, the windows are taped to the front of the building and there's unidentified goo between the banquet seats and the walls.
I keep going back because they have what I want at a price I can afford. I wish they'd clean it up though.
Randomly walked into this place at 6:00pm on a Friday.
It took a while before the "hostess" even greeted us, and even then we didn't get so much as a hello. She just grabbed menus and pointed towards the bench in front of the kitchen. Many booths and tables were still available so we asked if we could be seated at a table instead.
The "hostess" began whispering something to one of her coworkers and rolled her eyes at us. At this point there was no reason for us to stay.
You are working at a restaurant, it's dinner time and we didn't ask for any special treatment. We just wanted to eat!
I've never been treated so rudely at any restaurant before, let alone a sushi place. They are usually the best when it comes to service.
We ended up walking a block or so down the strip and going into Asiano sushi, which was just as cheap and much friendlier.
Will not be trying this place again.
Thank you to the other reviews, yes they not only need food safety but a license for an adult to serve liquor, not the owner's children. I too have noticed that they do not wash their hands. One of the owner's daughters, a teenager, usually found asleep at the bar, was practicing making sushi - then rang in a bill for a customer and went back to finishing the sushi...WITHOUT washing her hands. Ick! I also recommend you do not use their washrooms. I went in and one of the servers had left a dirty used facecloth at the sink and a brush full of hair on the counter....
I love this sushi place. I have eaten at many of the lower mainland sushi spots for many, many years and have become quite particular with my choices. I frequent this sushi place up to three times a week, walking past four other sushi places to get to it.
They tend to stay busy enough to keep all of their food fresh, though sometimes the gommae taste as though it was not freshly made. The fish is ALWAYS fresh though. The prices are great. They even have cheap domestic beer to go with your meal.
The downsides to this place are low, however if cleanliness and hygeine are important you may want to skip this place. I have seen enough things to turn the stomaches of many people, all involving the food prep area.
Of most concern is the young family boy who runs around the restaurant daily, crawling on the floor, putting a bouncing ball from the ground into his mouth, taking the ball out and then touching the sushi prep area without cleaning his hands. This child is there almost every night and can definately ruin your meal if you let him get to you.
If you are into sushi for the sushi taste alone, this place will give you what you need. The service could be tuned up a bit but is fine. This place is nothing fancy, but always fresh and very well priced.
My husband and I were finally bored of eating slices at The Pizza Garden ( good pizza-don't get me wrong ) and decided to check out Britannia Sushi after walking past countless of times. Yes, it seemed not as popular as some other sushi places but it suited our taste just fine. We both had the bento box special - chicken or beef teriyaki with the fixings but miso soup not included. I have to admit for the price of 4.95 you can't go wrong. The portion was just enough for us though if you were famish, it may not be enough for you then. Didn't make it to the washroom but after reading the reviews, I'm glad I didn't find out on my own...yikes!!!
If you want a cheap and delicious bento box Britannisis your place to go. $6.95 for a teriyaki bento box with a califonia roll, salad and 4 big pieces of tempura and its SO yummy GOOD! They also have a 3 roll combo for 6.25 I frequently pick up from here when I have a lunchtime sushi craving at work. They also have a Sushi special includes 3 rolls and miso soup. California, Yam Tempura ,and Tuna Roll 18 pcs with miso, such a great Deal!