We eat quite a bit of sushi and love trying new places. However, most places disappoint. Not this one!
As we walked in we were immediately impressed. It's not your typical cheap sushi bar/restaurant setting. It's nicely decorated, very clean, comfortable, with nice tables and chairs, etc. In fact, it looked so nice my friend wanted to check the menu prices to make sure it was not a really expensive restaurant. We sat down and the waiter immediately served us with menus and really good tea. That's another thing, the service! I kind of don't expect any kind of service anymore at Chinese-run restaurants, but our waiter is friendly and funny, very attentive. The menu had a good variety of rolls, dinner boxes, and we ordered two dinner boxes and one sushi box.
The portions were much larger than expected, as was the quality. Everything tasted fresh and delicious, even the miso soup was above average. Everything was nicely flavoured, and they don't drown your food in some overly-sweet teriyaki sauce.
At those prices, we will definitely go back.
I tried the beef yakisoba. First they didn't use the proper type of noodles and the beef was paper thin. Instead of using buckwheat noodles they used ramen. It was served in a casserole dish. It was the worst yakisoba I ever had... It was so greasy and had no taste. I tried adding some soy sauce but it was so greasy even the flavour of the soy sauce could not escape. I would highly recommend you to try this just for the experience. It's like that move Battle Field Earth... Its so bad you have to experience it for yourself.
after reading a few reviews of this restaurant i have to chime in and say for much better sushi just head around the corner to Temaki sushi at Arbutus/Broadway, without a doubt some of the best sushi in Vancouver. A recent article written in the Straight compared it to Tojo's for quality. I-Sushi is above average at best, but if you're within a block of Temaki i don't know why anyone would choose this over Temaki.
I'm 26 and I love my Sushi. My parents tell me they didn't have sushi in Vancouver when they were young. What a crime. Anyhow, back to the topic at hand.
A little history on me. I'm one of those sushi people that started off loving cheap All-You-Can-Eat sushi and dive bar sushi. Flash-forward 10 years and I'm now Mikey from those Life cereal commercials. Yes, I'm a sushi snob. But is it really my fault for deserving the freshest and cleanest sushi? Heeeeck no, so I'm sleeping alright, thank you very much.
Now let me lead in by saying I know there is some great sushi in Vancouver. I've been to Tojo's a handful of times, same for Yuji's and Toshi. They're great places as you would expect them to be, but a little pricey to do on a routine basis...... Enter I-Sushi...
I live about 2 blocks away from I-sushi and figured I may as well give it a shot. It's a nice little place, but I didn't expect much: There are so many sushi restaurants in Vancouver that statistically, I'll probably open 2 of them over my lifespan. haha. moving on--- I remember exactly what I first ordered. A tall Kirin, 1 avocado roll, 1spicy tuna roll, and 1 ebi mayo and an order of kimchi. -yes, I ordered too much food in hindsight.
The first thing that came to my table was the ebi mayo. Holy s***, simply amazing flavor at an amazing price. Whenever I bring friends to I-Sushi, I order this and we split it. It's a fan favorite and one of their signature dishes if you ask me. Next up, the kimchi. I usually order kimchi to clean my palette, but this kimchi is just damn good that it is more than just a palette cleanser. Next came my rolls. The spicy tuna roll was absolutely delicious and wasn't just mashed up tuna with a sauce to mask the quality/freshness (my #1 pet peeve) And finally, the avocado roll. Avocado rolls seem like they should be easy to make, and in principle they are. But most restaurants pay no attention to aging their avocado's properly; it's a crapshoot. you get what you get. But these avocado rolls are the best avocado rolls I've ever ordered. And consistently too. I've ordered the avocado rolls probably about 50 times and they have all been top quality.
Since my first excursion to I-Sushi a year ago, I have probably gone 2 times a week for the last year. They know me, they love me, and even create items on the spot for me when I'm feeling adventurous. How cool is that!
So what's the catch? If there is any catch, it's the music. I haven't worked up the courage to tell them that the music they play sucks, so hopefully they read this. The music makes for such poor ambience that I'll often order my food to-go so that I can avoid it.
But really, if that's the greatest fault of a restaurant, then you know they're doing alright.
for about $10-16 you will be able to order a meal that should probably cost a lot more just based on the quality. They have an extensive menu including some very creative rolls that are top notch. Also, the gyoza is AMAZING. All of my Kits friends are hooked on this place. I'd like to think that I had a large part to do with that, but really, all the credit goes to I-Sushi.
We have had a chance to sample I Sushi's delectable menu offerings numerous times and strongly recommend this restaurant. From traditional and non-traditional Japanese soups, salads, appetizers, barbeque and grill to tempura, sashimi, nigiri and temaki, this place has it all. But wait - the best is yet to come - this wonderful little hideaway on Arbutus just off Broadway has a selection of the most intriguing and scrumptious 'Chef's Special Rolls' that tempt us to spend our money every time. How about a Latin Lover, Caribbean Storm, Brazil Samba or Sea Adventure? The Snow White is a personal favorite - Salmon tempura roll topped with sesame seeds, chopped scallops, tobiko, coconut shavings and house spicy sauce. Go ahead, give this little Kitsalano gem a try and enjoy!
Was looking for something for dinner, and after much driving around and cursing, stopped into iSushi on Arbutus. It's a pretty little place, obviously had a lot of money poured into it when it first opened. There looks like it may have been a bit ignored since, but still ok. The bedroom-style lamps by the tables I found the most amusing, as you can dim them with the knob on the cord in plain view on your table. So you are in charge of your own lighting at iSushi, how romantic.
We both ordered the dinner boxes. This is not dinky little sushi. Lots of salad, and real salad, like mixed greens in vinaigrette. Big portion of Teriaki, although this was my least favorite item, tasted a little weird, but couldn't really pin down what it was. Which isn't something you want to think when eating beef. "Hmmm, this tastes bad, and bad in a way I wasn't previously familiar with. Let's ponder this for a minute...". The California roll was excellent however and there were lovely big fat pieces of tuna and salmon, so they didn't let me down on the really important stuff. Hubby and I were FULL OF SUSHI which is a little bit of a contradiction in terms, I know.
When you go up to the sushi bar, there are pictures of vivid, brightly coloured rolls, with hilarious names like Salsa Roll and Latin Lover. All are beautiful to look at, and made me wish I had tried a few of them instead of being lazy and ordering the bento box. I would almost be inclined to come back and try them all if it wasn't for....
The Music. This is maybe the strangest complaint for a restaurant I can think of but this killed this place for me. The place is called iSushi, like an iPod, yeah? We ate under a never ending stream of some of the worst Japanese-influenced-elevator-synth-jazz I have ever been exposed to. The kind of music that makes you think your on hold with HSBC Bank, or at a party for the launch of a new brand of mobile phone, or that some random bink with a love of slap bass and the kind of music you hear in Spas decided to combine his loves just for the better enjoyment of fat cut tuna sashimi.
Music is so important to the better enjoyment of food. Restaurants, please remember this. Don't treat it like an afterthought Remember, in 2004, Mario Batali was one point away from winning The New York Times highest possible rating for his rustic eatery, Babbo. What did he lose it on. Music.
However if they get the whole neuvo-lobotomy music taken care of, not bad really. Good portions, pretty decor, and an interesting menu. Will have to try again on another day.
*read more at womaneatscity.wordpress.com*
Have been here many, many times because it is in our immediate neighbourhood.
But today was a disappointment. My dining partner immediately noticed something was different when they served lukewarm tea.
Dishes were smaller and not as fresh. They seem to be substituting ingredients. Ate only a few pieces of the yaki ika (grilled squid).
Sushi quality is not bad. However, the service is very poor. We've been there a few times and each time we end up with the same male serve. Every time, he seems to be snarling at the customers. Even when we do take out, he looks like he is mad at the customers, like we are interrupting him by coming in the restaurant.