WARNING: LONG POST
As many of my friends may know, I’ve recently been raving insistently about an unbelievably awesome Japanese restaurant that somehow manages to serve up fresh fish while keeping prices to a shocking low. Eager to back up my claims, I decided that I would skip an hour of my extremely boring political science class (‘Darwin is a jerk!’ claim my class notes) in favor of indulging my tastebuds with deliciousness. To get an idea of how much deliciousness, I’ve been here three times in the past two weeks. It will probably be four by tomorrow.
Now before I continue with my post, I’d like to mention that eating at Sushi Couture is the reason why I decided to start food blogging, and as such, you should all expect a RAVE REVIEW and a TWO PART series: One for lunch, and another for dinner. I’d also like to add that trying to take pictures of large menus with a camera phone is ****ing terrible. 😦
Name: Sushi Couture
Location: 456 Bloor Street W M5S 1X8
Price Range: 7.99-33.99 depending on what lunch special you decide to order. (Bad) Pictures of the menu will be shown later.
Website: N/A, but I hear they’re looking for someone to do their website for them!
On a solo quest this time, I ventured into the familiar restaurant and was cheerfully welcomed by the head Sushi Chef Ken, the ex-head sushi chef of Japango. Taking my usual seat, I took a quick look over the menu and ordered the Chirashi Lunch (Sashimi on a bed of sushi rice, or ‘shari’) for $10.99. I opted to keep one of the menus for blogging reasons — this is important later.
After a brief wait, the famous complimentary duo of miso soup and salad arrived at my table.
Guys. Do you see how many strips of carrot there are? How about the subtle sprinkle of white and black sesame seeds, or the crunchy wedges of thin cucumber? This salad, accompanied by a well-flavored sesame dressing, was enjoyable both for the eyes and for the mouth. (Unlike another recently reviewed restaurant…)
The miso soup deserves special mention as well. An extra depth of flavor is present in this soup because Sushi Couture goes the extra mile to use an actual broth to mix with the miso, rather than simple mixtures of water and miso. And of course, this soup came with not one, not two, but THREE sizable strips of mushroom! Delish.
Immediately after finishing my complimentary appetizers, I was presented with my Chirashi.
Whipping out my camera, I struggled in an attempt to capture this dish in all its glory while Ken looked up from his work, bemused.
Me: I’m taking these for my new food blog, man. It’s cool.
Ken: AHAHAHA! It’s so convenient these days, phones and cameras, you know? *raises hand, snaps photos with an imaginary phone*
After finally managing to capture an acceptable shot (food blogging is tough!), I dug into my assorted fresh fish, and ever-so-slightly sweet tamago (egg). I hardly needed any soy sauce! A good test for those of you unaware: if you can eat the fish sans soy sauce, or with only a small dab of it and still enjoy your fish, then the quality of said fish is already above and beyond what you would normally have at some of the cheaper venues such as New Generation Sushi, J-Time, or Sushi on Bloor. Did I mention that Ken used a blowtorch to sear some of the fish for extra flavor? Awesome.
Since Ken and I are bros, he also ended up giving me an additional complimentary dish — butter yaki maki. Crab, cucumber,avocado, tobiko (flying fish roe), and sesame seeds are wrapped around seaweed (nori) and rice, before being topped off with a drizzle of mayo and a slice of salmon. Finally, it is torched off by Ken and his infamous blowtorch. The result is a delectable fusion roll with a host of exciting flavors. I think he actually wanted me to take a picture of it, since he was laughing as I took out my camera!
After finishing this sizable meal, I went to work trying to take pictures of the menu. After struggling for about five minutes, the waiter took pity on me and gave me a take-out menu. Finally, at my friend’s dorm, I managed to take some photos… Admidst her peals of laughter. I’ve decided to include all of them just so I can show you how much of a struggle I had. Please enjoy at my expense.
As I left, I decided to introduce myself.
Me: By the way, I’m Jeff! Nice to meet you.
Ken: Ohh! Nice to meet you, I’m Ken! *puts his fist out for props*
Me: *Thinking* Holy shit, a sushi chef is asking me for a fist bump. *props*
I don’t even know what to say. Except, well… AWESOME.