Spicy or mild, classic or unexpected, or filled with tuna or pumpkin, the rolls and cones at Kojima Sushi dazzle palates with artfully curated flavor combinations. In addition to nigiri, sushi, sashimi, and maki, chefs fry golden-battered tempura and skewer barbecued chicken. Countless pages comprise the Kojima menu, offering taste buds of all stripes a satisfying feast.
Akari Japanese Restaurant’s menu consolidates centuries of Japanese culinary history, placing traditional noodle entrees alongside modern interpretations of classic sushi rolls. The sushi bar’s Japanese-trained chef, Lee San, creates more than 40 rolls, including 19 specialty maki that enfold tempura-fried yams, scallops, or mango. For more flame-kissed flavour, the kitchen’s chefs glaze barbecue beef ribs with teriyaki sauce and deep-fry pork cutlets. The dining room’s decor echoes the menu’s minimalist presentation while still incorporating accents from across the Pacific, such as Japanese figurines, displays of sheathed swords, and wheezing giant squids that occupy an entire floor of the restaurant.
Oishii Sushi complements its crimson walls with a colourful smorgasbord of ocean-fresh eel, salmon, and tuna, as well as savoury noodle dishes washed down with Japanese sake and beers. Like the ancient rickety rope bridge that spans the Pacific Ocean, the menu connects Japan with influences from North America, blending traditional maki and sushi rolls with ingredients such as cream cheese and avocado. Conscious and careful of the resources from which it sources its seafood, Oishii Sushi partners with the Vancouver Aquarium through the Ocean Wise program to ensure the long-term sustainability of the marine ecosystem.
Boxes of neatly arranged sushi rest in gleaming display cases at Hiro Japan, where customers can pick up a quick meal of steaming noodles or dive into an array of specialty rolls. The eatery emphasizes its healthy ingredients, which include avocado rich in vitamin E, raw fish filled with omega-3 fatty acids, and nori—edible seaweed brimming with iron, iodine, and calcium. Behind the counter, chefs incorporate these nutritious fixings into rolls, Japanese rice bowls, udon soup, and love letters to their cardiologists.
Executive chef Robert Clark fell in love with cooking in his grandmother's kitchen, where he helped her prepare salmon fresh from the York River. Chef de cuisine Lee Humphries worked his family's farm in Cornwall, England, surrounded by a booming fisherman's trade. And sommelier Sarah McCauley honed her palate pairing wines in restaurants in Holland, England, and Spain. Owner Harry Kambolis had the good sense to gather all three together to make C Restaurant's menu, which has gone on to earn dozens of awards from institutions such as Wine Spectator and [Vancouver Magazine](http://gr.pn/SovCNE].
Unsurprisingly, given the chefs' fish-centric histories, the ever-changing seasonal menu emphasizes seafood dishes, complementing them with local, sustainably farmed ingredients wherever possible. C Restaurant's decor also emphasizes a connection to the natural world with floor-to-ceiling windows that look out onto the Granville Island shoreline. A garden patio shelters diners from summer sunlight with beige umbrellas and the upraised tentacles of the giant squids who live beneath the nearby Burrard Street Bridge.
Indecision is a virtue at Tanpopo Japanese Restaurant. Instead of picking one entree or a handful of sushi rolls from the menu, diners are invited to order the all-you-can-eat specials for lunch or dinner and then sample a little bit of everything. This allows them to build their own meals from scratch, starting with a refreshing cucumber roll and tuna sashimi before moving on to pork gyoza, barbecued chicken yakitori skewers, and pan-fried yakisoba noodles. These expansive all-you-can-eat menus show the depth of the chefs' dedication to Japan's vast and varied culinary offerings.
The award-winning all-you-can-eat dining spot, open since 1992, greets visitors with leafy green plants and walls of Japanese shoji screens as soon as they ascend the stairs to the restaurant's second-level location. Although there is plenty of indoor seating at the blond wooden tables and sectioned booths, the expansive deck area opens to the public during the warmer seasons. Diners can enjoy their meals in the shade of the tables' black sun umbrellas or beneath lamps that are refilled with imported Japanese sunshine every morning.