Zen Sushi is a sushi spot in West Vancouver dedicated to providing a traditional Japanese culinary experience with a West Coast flair.
I read the mixed reviews and decided to give it a try for fun.
I heard it was expensive but when I saw their specialty rolls were about $20 and everything else was double any other place I've been I was a bit surprised. OK so it better be good for these prices.
Food wise, the sushi and sashimi we had were fine, quality ingredients were used. I would have expected fresh wasabi at these prices but no. The teriyaki beef on the other hand was chewy and a bit tasteless. That's not excusable at these prices.
Service was OK. Definately not commensurate with price, I mean it was no different than white spot service. For these prices I expect gracious japanese service or high end dining service.
Ambience wise there were some nice touches with the decor and dishes but it's just OK.
My issue with this place was the ridiculous prices for what it is. If you think this place is good and the prices are fair, you need to get out to more sushi places. For high quality authentic try Hamei in Westview centre. Down the road at 14th and Marine is Ichiban, my favourite which is better all around, charming, and less than half the price. If you try these places good luck not feeling like a sucker for ever thinking Zen was good.
As a former fan of Tojo's who moved to the north shore, and an occasional diner at Nobu's (London, Tokyo and Aspen) I give Zen top marks. Japanese cuisine this good doesn't usually make it to the burbs, but Zen is one of West Van's best kept secrets. I've been coming bi-weekly for 13 years and am never disapppointed or bored. Expensive? No, good value.
Haven't been to Zen in three or four years. Was not disappointed with a recent visit. Same excellent food quality and taste. The Popcorn Shrimp Roll is outstanding in its uniqueness. We also had Tempura as well as the Special BC Roll and Seawall Roll. All were delicious.
The atmosphere is light and jovial with many family regulars. Service is quite good witih prompt delivery of dishes.
Zen is not cheap. But well worth the price. Our dinner, with one beer and one carafe of warm sake, with tax, was about $73.
Read good reviews about this place. But I do not go to West Vancouver often, so I never give it a try.
This week we just got back to town from Whistler. I guess it's a good chance to give it a try since it is on the way home?
I travel to Japan at least once a year. I have to say sushi quality in Vancouver is fairly good. And Vancouverites know what is good sushi and what is not. Therefore for a Japanese restaurant with such a high end price tag, I expect overall good performance.
Service was excellent. They really gave us a lot of attention.
Ambiance is alright. It nice and clean. But nothing very special.
Now the food....... is overpriced. The quality of the food is alright. But it is not good enough to match the price.
We tried tempura, and it was average. The tuna carpacio, ordinary. Deluxe sushi set..... what a rip off. It was supposed to be "9 pieces of premium nigiri sushi and a special salmon roll". Plating was beautiful, but the taste was disappointing. The "special salmon roll" is nothing but spicy salmon roll with some tabiko on top. Some nigiri sushi were already seasoned. 2-3 of them worked ok. But the dressing overwhelmed for the rest of the plate. We also ordered an Alaska roll. The mango totally governed the taste. I could not taste anything but the mango.
At that point, we were no longer hungry. But we thought that's enough for an overpriced sushi experience, so we left. As a conclusion, the plating is beautiful, but the taste just driven me away.
Step away from this place. There are other fine Japanese restaurants in town that you can have better dinning experience with the same price.
With vast dining experiences at various sushi restaurants, I say that the food at this restaurant is good, but they come with an outrageous price tag. Why do I want to pay much more and get quality food that I can get from other sushi restaurants? Well, this one is in West Vancouver.
We ordered various items off the menu. Hamachi, toro, tuna, salmon, some special rolls, a couple appetizers. They were good. Ingredients were fresh. The taste is familiar. There is no wow factor.
The waitress serving tea and cleaning the table were very nice. However, the whole evening experience was ruined by the long curly brown hair woman who took our order. Boy, was she rude and impatient. When she put down our sample sake (3 samplers). She said in a care free and rush manner, "we were out of xxx, so we are giving you this". Then she was ready to leave. We asked what were these samplers, she said they are in the menu. When we asked for the bill, she asked in a loud voice, "NO DESSERT FOR YOU?". Is there a rule to have dessert before we can ask for a bill? Well, just a couple examples of her rudeness.
The chef behind the counter was excellent. My husband said the chef's nice personality can make up for the bad attitude of the long curly brown hair waitress. I do agree that the chef does provide professional service, but it didn't compensate for the bad experience I have. It is unfortunate that a high end restaurant is staffed and affected by one bad waitress.
Zen is tucked away from the street, and surprisingly large once you walk down teh narrow glassed entry. Quite a large patio off the back, with a nice peakaboo view.
Prices are definitely on the high side, with probably the most expensive chirashi ($30) we've ever encountered. Spicy tuna was excellent. Service and ambience were about average.
Was a decent deal with the Groupon, but I've had great sushi elsewhere for much more reasonable prices.
We went here with a Groupon and have been back at least 4 times since. If you want a quick inexpensive suhi meal though, don't go here (try Dundarave Sushi).. this will cost you a little bit more however if you are daring to pick something from their book-like menu, you have to try it at least once! and then you may be back like us... this place has incredible cooked Japanese dishes. I am addicted to the popcorn shrimp roll - you have to try this if you go (popcorn shrimp, lettuce, asparagus, wrapped in a soy wrap); tuna tataki superb, agedashi tofu, short ribs, flash fried halibut, beef terryaki, etc and I could go on. To be honest, I have not tried their standard maki rolls as they do cost almost double what I would pay for them at other sushi places. be prepared to pay $50+ dollars for two hungry people..
We liked this place very much. The sushi was good and did not cost much. There was a good selection. The service was excellent and there were nice Japanese hangings on the wall. We did wish there was not ranting television and nasty howling style of music. We do wish there could be NO television and just some quiet Japanese music. Then it would be perfect. But if you do not mind the noise then this is the best value around.
We came here several years ago and were not at all impressed with the food. Recently a second try produced the same results. The sushi we had was very mediocre, and DEFINITELY not worth the outrageous prices they are asking. We eat at Japanese restaurants regularily and the food here is nothing special. The isobi agay we had tasted like mush. Memorable only for the high bill! Not the food. Ambiance is not bad. Service was good.
We frequent Zen Japanese Restaurant on a regular basis. It is our sushi restaurant of choice. In fact we now have a lot of difficulty eating at any other sushi restaurant because no where else does the food meet the standards of Zen. The seafood freshness is second to none.
Food is terribly important at a restaurant but for us service is equally important. We like it when our needs are instinctively cared for and the staff is efficient and friendly. Zen seems to pride itself on phenomenal customer service.
The food: Zen is innovative, exciting, mouth watering and simply delicious. Our favourite must have dishes are the Popcorn shrimp roll, Tails Up and Tuna Tataki Salad. The Garlic short ribs are delightful and the Seawall roll is almost as scintillating as the specialty deserts. I dream about the warm chocolate brownies.
Thank you Zen for making our dining at your restaurant an event that we look forward to every time we come.
As an Asian and Japanese food manic myself, I have tried every Japanese restaurant in west van, and this one is not the one I would like to go back for a second. The food quality is fairly good and fresh and I can see they are trying to be an up-scale Japanese restaurant in town. However I found it a bit to be too pretendous and over price in terms of what you get. We didn't order much and not to say being full, over $300 for 2 people a dinner. If this is the case I would rather go to TOJO's at least their food quality standard is higher than this one. There is one called Ichiban on the second floor between Marine & 15th, a cozy little place owned by a Korean chef. He is the third chef I known seem the first I went there 3 years ago, the food (especially sushi) is always fresh and good, if you want some authenic sushi, this is a good place to go.
Decided to try this place out as I've heard it mentioned many times before. I was expecting something similar to what's offered at Tojo's....and boy, were we ever disappointed!!! The atmosphere was so-so. Didn't really feel like a japanese restaurant. The waitress (long curly brown hair) was rude and annoying. The genetlmen sitting at the table next to us was commenting to the waitress that his sake tasted a tad "flat". Well, the waitress responded by telling him, "well, the sake you ordered is the cheap sake!!".
Ahi Tuna was one of the worst I've ever had! It tasted like it had been previously seared and then taken out of the fridge and sliced up. Tried something called the West East Coast Roll (or something that sounded like that). Not impressed whatsoever. We had a few other dishes that were nothing great. We decided not to order any more food after the first few dishes as everything was no that great.
Def. not going to return to this place. Two thumbs down!
|1.||2803 East Eglinton Avenue (3365 km)|