It’s commonly agreed that Vancouver has the best sushi in Canada, which, if you think about it, makes a lot of sense. Based on the West Coast of Canada, it is the closest port to South East Asia and therefore the landing strip to all immigrants who came and still do from there, and thus all their knowledge on their delicious food. With time, big, small and everything in between restaurants have flourished throughout the city catering to patrons with all budgets and interests. From cheap mom and pop take outs to full on, tastefully decorated restaurants, there is no lack of options where to find excellent sushi. So which is the best sushi restaurant in Vancouver? I was recommended Miku Waterfront Restaurant by the Vancouver Tourism office. I’m not sure if it’s the best in the city, but if it’s not it is certainly one of the best out there.
Miku Waterfront Restaurant
Located beside historic landmark Canada Place, Miku finds its home along the waterfront, part of what I found to be the beautiful Vancouver skyline though apparently not everyone likes it- I still can’t figure out why. The view here will not be unnoticed, a seafront enclave serving as a perfect match to the mostly seafood to be eaten. And while the appearance does stand out for good, Miku Restaurant has also embraced environmental and social responsibility.
Miku Restaurant is downtown Vancouver’s first Ocean Wise Japanese restaurant. This conservation program, administered by the Vancouver Aquarium, recognizes restaurants supporting sustainable seafood choices and fishing practices. Menu items approved by the program receive the Ocean Wise logo, which is recognized by diners all across Western and Central Canada. In addition to this, in 2010, Miku Restaurant invested in the Vivreau System to filter and bottle tap water on-site. Metro Vancouver tests tap water over 136,000 times a year to make sure it is safe to drink, and Vivreau ensures its tap water tastes great. Socially, the restaurant tries to support as many events hosted by local businesses and charity initiatives as possible. Whether it’s sponsoring gift certificates, catering to an event or volunteering it has made a purpose of itself to be engaged in the community beyond restaurant borders. But let’s talk about the food.
Miku Waterfron restaurant specializes Aburi sushi, midway between raw sashimi and grilled fish, so you get the great texture and the nice taste. This is achieved by the innovative idea of sear-flaming sushi. It has been accepted since the early days of history that a light sear direct from the flame enhances the natural flavor of the fish.The idea of flame-searing the fish goes above and beyond normal sushi style. By creating specialty sauces to go with each different Aburi style sushi and introducing flavors beyond peoples’ expectation, Aburi Sushi has successfully established its reputation as a brand in itself.However, pursuit of something new also means to nurture the tradition while continuously carrying it to the future. The secret of the flavor of Aburi sushi comes from the method of making shari (that’s rice for you and me). Persistant flavor of shari maintains the flavor of Aburi Sushi, while pursuing the new Aburi styles.
Chef Kazuya Matzuoka
At the age of 18, Chef Matsuoka began his culinary career in Japan, with several years of training in authentic Italian cuisine. His first exposure to classical French and French-fusion cooking techniques came with a position at La Maree de CHAYA. Using fresh seafood as its focus, La Maree de CHAYA was a pioneer of French style Japanese cooking.
In 2004, he relocated from Japan to Los Angeles to work for CHAYA Brasserie, sister restaurant to La Maree and a forerunner in Japaenese-French fusion cuisine in California.
After years of dedicated contribution to CHAYA Group, Chef Matsuoka left Los Angeles in 2011 to join the culinary team at Miku Restaurant in Vancouver, Canada. He immersed himself in the restaurant’s unique West Coast infused Aburi cuisine, adding yet another cooking style to his culinary repertoire. With his extensive experience, innate sensibility and strong passion for cooking, Chef Matsuoka soon moved into the position of Aburi corporate executive chef.
My Culinary Experience at Miku
I have to admit, right off the bat, that I’m not an expert in sushi. I don’t know fancy names of meals except for those you may know too like miso soup, sashimi, shari and nori. But that’s about it. I do know, however, what I like and what I don’t like, and may even venture to give a valid opinion on what is good and is not. And the sushi at Miku watefront is good, no questions asked. Sure, I may be biased because I noticed that, come lunch time, the restaurant was full and there were a few people waiting, each table carefully being cleaned and repopulated as soon as patrons were done, all without it being noticeable because of the ample space, great service, and superb views. Lot’s of them business people who know where to eat.
Great Aburi sushi, a fine dining experience in a carefully decorated restaurant located in a beautiful area, Miku Waterfront Restaurant will not disappoint. They do have a lot of options going on, so I recommend you ask what they recommend on that particular day, and if you’re hungry and still unsure about what to eat, ask for their sample menu and you won’t go wrong.
Miku Waterfront website: http://mikurestaurant.com
Do you like sushi? Have you visited Vancouver? What do you think of the sushi scene in Vancouver? Have you visited Miku restaurant? Share with us your favorite sushi dish in the comments section below and this post too if you think others may find it helpful!
I was a guest of Miku Waterfront Restaurant, however all opinions shared in this post are entirely my own, as always!