Head Chef John Ngo and his team at Shima Sushi never have to look beyond the horizon for inspiration. The waters surrounding the Vancouver Island restaurant constantly remind the culinary team of its commitment to ocean-fresh sushi and eclectic Japanese cuisine. This island is so integral to the restaurant's identity that even the name stems from the Japanese word for island.
Ngo takes full advantage of his surroundings, showcasing the region's vibrant seafood in the form of elegantly sliced sashimi and gingerly rolled maki packed with tempura prawns, crab, and barbecue eel. The rest of the menu brims with seafood yakisoba noodles, sliced pork tenderloin with ginger sauce, and other iconic Japanese entrees, as well as an assortment of dishes with subtle Western influences, including slow-cooked ribs with a teriyaki-barbecue sauce.
Located inside a historic structure that once housed James Yates, Shima Sushi's decor reflects a similar commitment to fusing Eastern and Western cultures. The exposed Halifax-style stonework along the walls contrasts with the arch-like Japanese toriis and modern pendant lamps. Enormous floor-to-ceiling windows line the front of the restaurant, flooding the dining area and the mezzanine section with enough natural light to jump-start a solar-powered monster truck.