A funky Japanese Restaurant that strays from the ordinary.
I'm sure that I'm not the only one who realizes that this place focuses on style over function. The decor is incredible the first time but the food doesn't live up to the hype. It's not necessarily bad but there is little value and the service is slow so it's not a place worth revisiting.
my husband and i ordered a spider roll, a chopped scallop roll, a spicy tuna roll, and a jalapeno popper roll. the rice was overcooked and excessive in every roll, especially the jalapeno popper, which contained just a sliver of smoked salmon and only a hint of cream cheese. the portions were tiny for the price. i loved the decor, and the service was decent, but i will probably never order their sushi again.
It was my first time to this restaurant. We were there for dinner last night and thankfully we had a table on the patio as the music inside was loud and the lighting was dark.
I will say that it was busy while we were there, it looked like they had a lot of regulars and the service was reliable. I won't be back to this restaurant nor would I recommend it to friends. The sushi is too funky for me, and not something I would order again and the music is too loud. I guess it turns out that I prefer traditional Japanese fare.
Tuna Tempura - The saving grace of our whole meal. 4 pieces of tuna in tempura batter with a drizzle of sauce. A great appetizer.
Red Sanja roll- From the funky creations page. Seemed to me like it was a regular spicy tuna roll, half of which was topped with a thin piece of tempura salmon and the other half with mashed avocado, and then priced at $6.95.
Ebi fried curry - 7 prawn tempura on a bed of rice and then covered with too much curry sauce that tasted like the Glico curry that I sometimes get from T & T. The prawns were good, unfortunately they were drowning in that Glico curry sauce. We ordered it to be medium spice but it was not spicy at all.
Salmon maki - An item from the 'regular' sushi page and it did taste very regular.
I would guess that there are 30-40 tables in the restaurant. Can you believe that there is only one unisex bathroom for this entire restaurant?
I've lost count how many times my wife and I have come here and always just blown away by how fun this place is! Creativity in the sushi and the pricing is solid ... the service can be a bit slow but the staff don't look to be professional waiters/waitresses here.
I've been to the Eatery several times. The food is always yummy & well-priced, the decor a matter of personal taste, the music too loud, and the service has ranged from ok-ish to great.
We ordered all food to share. The pork gyoza was ok (but I don't often find GREAT anywhere). ALL the sushi rolls were totally delicious! We got 8 very different ones to try - ranging from veggie to all kinds of seafood, sweet to spicy. We all found them tasty (I was especially happy cause I'm pretty timid of anything with the word "spicy" and, although there was noticeable spice, I still liked it).
Perfect ending: all the food (2 small starters - I didn't try, gyoza & 8 rolls) came out to $14 per person!
After living out in Montreal for the past four years, I've had to describe what GOOD sushi tastes likes to the poor deprived easterners about a million times. And every time, I'm describing The Eatery.
Okay.. It's not REAL sushi. It's more like the indulgent junk food of sushi. But in the absolute best way possible. So much of their sushi is covered in a decadent teriyaki mayonaise creation after having been deep fried in some way. But even when I am stuffed like a christmas turkey after eating there, my mouth is watering again in 5 minutes. Both the nobashi prawns and the tuna tempura are absolutely amazing. The sushi involves crazy ingredients like papaya, mango, bacon, cream cheese, deep fried banana, and asaparagus (to name a few) in endless combinations. This would definitely be a contender for my last meal on earth.
The restaurant is very "cool" in that loud music is bumping, hot chicks in shorts are serving you, and weird papier mache sea creatures lit by coloured lights are hanging above your head. This is definitely a place to get drunk with friends, take a date for something you can both be awed by and giggle about later, or just go for some amazing sushi. This is definitely not the place to bring anyone above the age of 35, go for 5 star service, or avoid 16 year old hoochies trying to get away with underage drinking.
The Eatery is very popular and has a huge line outside every time I go. Inside the decor is funky and definitely eclectic. Their menu is long with lots of options...but unfortunately that is where the good part of the review ends. A lot of the options sound interesting and unique, but they just don't taste very good. It seems like they tried to come up with really weird and funky stuff at the expense of actually making clever combinations of ingredients that really complement each other well. The food is just mediocre. I have tried lots of options, from gyoza to okonomiyaki to donburi to sushi to dessert, and I always find myself a bit disappointed. There are many better sushi restaurants in Vancouver. Overall a fun place to go, but would rather go somewhere else for better food.
Culture Shock is a curious thing. And it's odd that white North Americans seems to be particularly susceptible to it. Case in point, I even got Culture Shock going to England. Pathetic, I know. Going to places like Asia after living in Canada your whole life must absolutely blow your mind.
The most simplistic description of the difference between Asian and North American cultures is in the term "Hot and Noisy". This is used to describe that sort of hypercolour energy, flashing lights and noise in places such as Hong Kong. Just think of something like the flashing signs and buzz of Tokyo. But while we might find something "hot and noisy" unpleasant and downright uncomfortable, Asian cultures consider this ideal for something like a shopping plaza, party (calling a party hot and noisy is a compliment to the host in some instances), and even the layout of a website. I'm over simplifying this whole concept of course, but that the gist of what I find a very interesting difference between there and here.
If there is one perfect description of The Eatery (3431 West Broadway), it is that it is fantastically hot and noisy. Decorated like the interior of an arcade, full of giant cartoon characters, modern art and black light. Pumped full of music you would normally place more in a night club than a restaurant. Full of trendy college kids and twenty-somethings laughing, hugging, having a great time. It's sort of like if Chuck -e-Cheese grew up and started raving. I was there with some family for my Mother-in-laws birthday. We were a mix of ages, but I think it worked as both by parents in law are downright cool, and love a good time. Maybe don't bring your Grandmother who can't stand noise.
The waitresses are very relaxed yet energetic and full of good recommendations. The menu is huge, full of funky titles like Fat Elvis, Andy Warhol, Love Boat, etc. It can get a little overwhelming so ask for help. Muddle through this giant menu and you could be there all night. The highly recommended Tuna Tempura was amazing; soft, delicate tuna wrapped in light crisp batter drizzled in a little sauce and a smattering of green onion. This is fish fingers in the Land of Perfect. If you eat nothing else here, eat one of these.
We went a little crazy on the ordering (I won't mention what the bill was!). I have to say though that I was expecting some sort of crazy presentation or something to go with the general decor and feel of the place. It was really presented in a pretty traditional Japanese manner, which is always nice. I had thought from the build-up that it would be suspended from the ceiling on a trapeze or something, but it was just your traditional Vancouver style sushi, with a few taste twists.
My final impression was that I had wished that our server had wrapped us up a little faster. We found that we were waiting for our bill for a few minutes longer than we would have liked. Also, for such a fun place, I was really surprised that they didn't do anything with the Birthday that was happening at our table. When I booked, I mentioned that it was for a birthday, and there were obviously presents and stuff being opened. There wasn't even a "happy birthday" from the waitress, or a little free thing, or anything. I don't think you book a restaurant for a birthday expecting free stuff or anything, all I'm saying is that sometimes it's nice when they make a little bit of a fuss over the birthday boy or girl.
I think that The Eatery would be a great place to start out someone who has never eaten sushi or thinks it's not for because it's too stuffy. It really liked the atmosphere for a young crowd, or a party. Not for a sombre occasion or a romantic meal perhaps, although I'm considering holding my wake there if it's still open at the time of my eventual and unfortunate demise. I rather like the idea of my final send off being attended by a giant paper Astro Boy.
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I looove the one of a kind sushi items they have created and always look forward to trying my new favorite sushi concoction.
Funky decor and really easy going atmosphere.
Only downside is the slow service and lack of serving staff. One time we were ready to leave and were escorted to the debit machine to pay and after our server got distracted and disappeared, we were left waiting for someone to ring us up for like 20 minutes! We had to choice to stand there while numerous people tried to help us and track down our server. If you want good non traditional Japanese and have lots of patience, you should give it a try!
Food - Although the food is not that authentic, it's different and unique. Most of the items are tasty and the portions are okay.
Service - This is the biggest downfall of the place. Service? There is no such thing at this place. The servers can be rude at times and seem to be in their own little worlds. Even when the place is not busy the servers are really slow and not very attentive. You will need to have an endless amount of patience to get you through your meal.
Value - The prices I would say are around average. A few of the items are over priced for what you get.
Ambience - Hooray the place stands out! Probably one of the only things this place has going for them, besides the just-under-par quality food. Astro Boy, Godzilla, Elvis and so forth...fun times!
No offense, but I believe a lot of the good reviews given to this restaurant for their sushi are from people who don't eat sushi a lot, or are just impressed by their wide variety of special rolls.
Food: I came a couple times, most recently with UBC friends, and a lot of them gave positive reviews for the sushi rolls but they all tasted the same to me and weren't spectacular. Vancouver has tons of sushi restaurants with way better special rolls. Maybe it's just because there's a cool western-asian fusion crazy vibe or something here. I don't want to be biased though, I've only tried their sushi rolls so can't say much about anything else.
Service: No rudeness or anything but slow and we had to ask over 5 times for utensils and waters. Our waitress seemed tired or didn't like her job or something.
Value: Not bad, not cheap either. Affordable.
Ambiance: Great for kids who like the dark loud vibe feel but it's hard to see sometimes and not very comfortable seats.
All in all, I would return if others would like, but if it was up to me, I would take them elsewhere.
We've tried to like the Eatery for the fact that they have imaginary rolls and the atmosphere is kind of fun but I think we're moving on. The last food we ate was take away and was a disaster. The rolls looked like a five-year old made them; the fillings were falling out and the slices of fish were pathetically small.
Today's dissapointment was the rice. It was some of the worst I've ever had. The kernels were so squished together it was basically "rice paste". Go across the street to Sushi Vancouver where we've found better quality sushi for 1/2 the price.
The Eatery is one of trendy joints in town, similar to The Foundation and with the same strengths and weaknesses. The food is good, some of the best sushi you'll find though some of the more far-out creations are hit and miss. Because it is so popular you can expect to wait a long time to be seated if you're visiting during peak hours, and once you're seated don't expect stellar service.
The decor is literally fantastic (where else in town can you find a papier-mache Cthulhu hanging from the ceiling) and this is a good place to go for a first date as there is lots to talk about. The flip side is that the music is so loud that you'll usually have a hard time hearing your companions.
This is also one of those places that have annoying, confusing names for their dishes which can make interpreting the menu a chore.
Went on a friday very early....5pm so there was no thumping music club vibe yet. I hate sushi but the boyfriend loves it so I often have to compromise on restaurant choices. He really wanted to go here so we went.
We ordered the veggie gyoza to start. I ordered the chix curry bowl with noodles and he ordered 3 different rolls. My chix curry bowl came with a basic salad to start (iceberg lettuce, tom, and cukes). The dressing on it was tasty. Gyoza were satisactory as well. Now comes the bad part (for me anyways). My curry was awful. Just gross. I had 2 bites and couldn't eat anymore. It was waaaay over curry powdered. Thats all I could taste. My boyfriend tried it and thought it was disgusting as well. The noodles were also overcooked. My boyfriend loved his sushi but this is not his review so thats why the low food rating.
I guess the lesson learned is don't get anything that is not sushi or japanese type food.
I won't be back but for those who like sushi this is a funky (allbeit tired and worn) looking place. I can see the appeal to the UBC crowd. Service was decent but it was early when we went and not even close to packed yet.
Next time my boyfriend wants sushi from here it will have to be to go.
I tried many places for sushi around 4th and Broadway. The eatery is a busy and loud place, but the food is amazing. They have a diversity of sushi i've never seen before. Definitely a fusion sushi place. Everyone i went with was surprised of the quality of the food and the freshness of it. The service is good. Make a reservation, and don't expect too much food, it's expensive but the quality of the food will kick your ass. Pay and enjoy.
I went to the Eatery twice now. Last time I went with my boyfriend and i must say it was really not a very good experience. First we had to wait 30 min for a table and once we got it, our server told us that the sushi kitchen is slow today so if we want sushi it will take about 60 min. We werent that hungry and really in a sushi mood so we ordered a couple of rolls and some small snacks. We ordered some drinks as well (only 2 each tho). When the food arrived after 80 min, it did taste pretty good but it wasn't very much (rolls were sometimes only 4 pieces...). When the bill came, we were really shocked cuz it was almost $90 and we werent even full (it really wasnt a lot of food!). we def. regretted going there as we could get 3 times as much sushi at most other places for the same money. Plus, the server was not very friendly, and it was hard to even get a refill on water. not recommended!
I put up with the lineups and craziness at The Eatery because they have some of the best vegetarian sushi options in all of Vancouver. The mango paradise roll is particularly delicious. Highly recommended if you're bored with the hum-drum avocado, cucumber and "veggie" sushi that you find at other places.
Food: Very average, middle of the road sushi rolls and garden variety fusion cuisine. If you've ever been to a non-traditional japanese (or even korean) restaurant, you'll probably have tried similar combinations of ingredients and flavours. The prices are fair for the area and the so are the portions. Take your friends if you want to try lots of dishes because they have a huge menu.
Service: A little disappointing. I find the place to be slightly under-staffed on the weekends which makes it uncomfortable with everyone running around trying to seat new guests and take orders. When they run out of what you ordered they tend to tell you only slightly before the food for the rest of your party arrives...
Ambiance: If you love Astroboy (to almost a kitschy extent) then you'll love this place. I grew up watching the show so the first time I went I was totally amused by all the little figurines and posters. The next few times weren't as fun because it started to seem as if I was sitting in a theme restaurant.
Overall: I'd go back, but there is nothing there that makes it a destination restaurant for me.
Went to this after hearing good things about it. Went on a weeknight so there wasn't that many people. The food selection is pretty good, with the place emphasizing on non-traditional offerings. Frankly I think it's just new ways of doing old things. The rolls are ok -- better than the average serving -- but nothing spectacular. The fusion dishes leave a lot to be desired however (e.g. Butter Chicken Katsu with their blend of tomato sauce) -- it strives to be different but ends up being very mediocre.
The one thing that will probably drive away a number of people is the ambiance (or the lack of it). The inside of the place is mostly dark (attributing to their "funky" appeal), reminiscent of clubs. It can get hard to read the menus even in the middle of the day. The outside patio is a better place, in my opinion.
Service is ok, with warm and friendly student (?) servers.
The one thing that brings me back is the variety in the menu. I've yet to find a superb offering in the menu, but so far everything they have makes we want to try something new.
The Eatery is a hip place to be any day of the week, but as it has already been stated one would not like to have a first date or an introduction to the family there. The service leaves something to be desired, but I think it is partly because they are severely understaffed at all times. Plus as it is “the place to be” it’s consistently packed and the waits can be long just to get a table, not to mention receiving your food. The best time to go is normally during the day for lunch as you can eat, have room to breath, and often receive your food on time. On the whole the food is a little pricey in comparison to most Japanese food restaurants, but the menu offers interesting variations on old classics (the Godzilla Roll comes recommended). Ultimately though the Eatery provides a very hip atmosphere, with plesant but over worked staff, and is not a bad place to grab a bite to eat and a beer with your friends, just as long as you have time to wait.