Sushi California is a Korean operated Japanese restaurant chain in Vancouver. They now have 3 locations in the lower mainland. I went to their Mount Pleasant location to check it out. There are a lot of customers lining up, which is a phenomenon in itself judging by the poor food quality and lack of integrity. Sushi California is located on Broadway near Cambie Street, Vancouver.
Strength: Convenient location
Weakness: Subpar standard non-Japanese food.
Other Koreapanese Restaurant
- Kamamarui Ramen and Don (3 Stars)
Outside is not welcoming
It is surprising that there is dark colored drapery in front of their store. This barrier makes the restaurant less welcoming. You can see some writing on the storefront, but the background is quite busy to make out what it says.
Interior space is bright in contrast
As soon as you go inside, the entire space feels darker. You don’t get any sun light from the storefront, only some natural light sprinkle through the skylight. After my eyes have adjusted to the dark interior the lighting actually feel bright.
Entire restaurant can be summed up with the tableware
Our server brought us tableware and tea. They are the generic plastic material with some graphic to resemble Japan. These tableware are light and feel cheap. It is quite fitting for the Sushi California to use these. They look Japanese, but cheap and lack integrity once you interact with it.
The staff here are not friendly, they want to get you to order and out of the space as soon as possible because there are a lot of people waiting during lunchtime.
Small Party Tray for two
I don’t understand how you can have a “Small Party Tray for 2” and give out 9 pieces of nigiri sushi. I mean… Who does that? Let’s not even talk about who gets salmon or the masago. One person is going to eat 1 sushi less and still fork out 50% of the price. This party tray should be called “The Breakup for 2” instead.
Roles looks cheap and taste cheap
The second tray consists of two rolls, Dynamite Roll and California Roll. I think the California roll can have a bit more filling, but is acceptable. The rice feel a bit hardened at some location. The Dynamite roll consists of two shrimp tempura and avocado. The shrimp is not really crunchy. The texture is more of a stale crunch. You have to try to know what it taste like. All I can tell you is that “Stale crunch” is not a natural state of deep fried food.
The final item that came to our table was the Kitsune Udon. It is fried tofu udon with some sliced fish cake. The noodle is chewy, and that is the only good part about this bowl of udon. The soup has not much flavour, and the limitd flavour come from MSG. It is important to note that there is also a bit of chemical taste to the soup.
The black portion of the avocado was present when it’s served to us. This is the end piece. I assume the inside is probably somewhat similar to this.
604 Food Critic Assessment
Sushi California is not a Japanese Restaurant. There are many people lining up for their food. If you are one of them, please tell me why. The $17 per person price point cannot justify the sub-par ingredient, nor the lack of service. I am not comfortable to recommend this Koreapanese Restaurant.
How to get in touch
- Phone: (604) 873-8284
- Address: 388 W Broadway, Vancouver
- Hours: 11:30 am – 9:30 pm, Sunday 12:00pm – 9:30 pm