Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Shima Sushi

Address: 1218 Wharf Street
Phone: (250)  590-7370
Price: $5-12 a roll
Notes: Classy environment and a gem on a row of tourist traps

Shima Sushi bucks the trend of the  tourist traps and over-price restaurants on the row of restaurants on Wharf Street by offering up their menu at typical sushi prices. The menu is also refreshing in that along with the usual sashimi and rolls that you find at every sushi restaurant in town there are some menu items that you rarely see elsewhere, and although they are not particularly unique or strange it is nice to shake things up a bit!

The restaurant has a lobby area at the top with space for a hostess and a few tables. Down a wide, steep flight of stairs to the large main dining area with windows from floor to ceiling. The ambiance is pretty fancy looking out in the direction of the water. I suspect they host quite a few first dates and birthday parties here although our first visit was boxing day so it was understandably pretty quiet.

What we really appreciated was the attention to detail around the portioning. There was very deliberately an even number of everything, and often the dish came with each of our half portions separated out for us evenly. This was a welcomed change from having to out-guilt each other over the last one of something whenever we eat sushi out!

December 26, 2011
I really appreciated that there was shabu shabu soup instead of miso soup as a starter! It was pretty simple - only a few paper-thin slices of meat and a few lonely mushrooms, but it was a refreshing change of pace.

The tempura that came was excellent - crisp and plentiful with a nice presentation including the crispy
plasticy noodles underneath. The dipping sauce it came with was extraordinarily tasty - not the standard tempura dip.

For me, eating out at sushi restaurants is really all about the sashimi! These were not the most exquisite cuts I have ever had, but the portioning was generous for the price and there were the perfect number of slices to satisfy my craving.

My partner-in-food-and-life noticed that octapus sashimi is not a typical menu item at most japanese restaurants in town, and decided to order it. I had a little bit of trouble with the texture - not that it was bad, just not my preference - but the flavour was good.

I was also excited to order the oshitashi roll, with the delicious marinated gourd that you don't often find as a roll on its own, although I have since seen it at Sakura. After doing my research, i discovered "oshitashi" refers the to the marinade - a soy and mirin concoction that sounds pretty common.

December 26, 2011
Admittedly, there was a significant delay in between writing this review and eating here so my memory may be a little hazy. I remember that it took a little longer than my hungry belly wanted, but the service was polite and friendly and just the right amount of chatty. We felt respected and welcomed as guests for sure, and would visit again.