Sushi in Vancouver
June 3, 2016 10:42 AM   Subscribe

I'm looking for a good, inexpensive sushi buffet in Vancouver that is easily accessible via skytrain or bus. We'd also like some place that doesn't serve sharkfin soup.

My girlfriend and I had been going to BC Sushi, since it was pretty cheap, but last time we were there we noticed they had sharkfin soup on the menu, which we find distasteful and would like to take our money elsewhere. Suggestions to that elsewhere would be welcome. I hope this isn't too banal a question for Ask Mefi
posted by Canageek to Food & Drink (13 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
good, inexpensive sushi
Please pick one adjective.
posted by w0mbat at 10:55 AM on June 3, 2016 [5 favorites]

w0mbat: Grad student good. Comparable to BC Sushi. Ah, the places in Ontario I've been, were August 8, and one called Kasa Sushi, if you know either of those.
posted by Canageek at 11:25 AM on June 3, 2016

Depending on your definition of "good": I really liked Tomokazu (#201-1128 west broadway) when I visited Vancouver last spring. My group of 6 people (4 grad students and 2 real adults) all liked it so much we came back to eat there again the next night, and I still have their business card. We didn't visit any other sushi places while I was there so I'm not sure how it compares to BC sushi or other buffet sushi in Vancouver, but it was cheaper and much much better than the all-you-can-eat sushi places I visit regularly here in Ottawa (which I realize is not saying much, haha. On the other hand, if you're used to Ontario AYCE sushi places, I'm told that you'll be happy with pretty much any place in Vancouver).

Don't know if they serve sharkfin soup, unfortunately, but I'm sure if you call the restaurant they'd tell you.
posted by randomnity at 12:03 PM on June 3, 2016 [1 favorite]

Are you specifically looking for buffet/all-you-can-eat?

I live next to BC Sushi and have only been there once because it's awful.

The sushi place on the corner of Granville and 41st is AYCE and is better than BC Sushi.

Osaka Sushi, in the basement of the village at UBC is surprisingly decent, especially for the price. But not AYCE. My grad student cohort, back in the day, would go there at least once a week, if not more often.

If you're willing to spend just a *little* more, non-AYCE places like Hi-Nippon on 4th between Vine and Yew is economical "good" sushi.

If you're willing to spend a *bit* more, Ajisai on 41st and West Boulevard behind the BC Liquor Store/London Drugs is pretty high end for moderate prices.
posted by porpoise at 1:08 PM on June 3, 2016 [2 favorites]

Thank you very much porpoise! Yes, BC sushi was a step down from where I was used to in Ontario, but I could still try random things without costing a extra per dish. Also, cheap. That sounds like a really useful guide.
posted by Canageek at 1:32 PM on June 3, 2016

Ajisai is super good but be careful what you order, you could end up paying a lot more, depending.
posted by juv3nal at 1:33 PM on June 3, 2016

Well, there's always Shabusen. Not sure, but they don't likely serve shark fin soup as they're Japanese/Korean, no Chinese food. I've never actually eaten there, but when I used to live near the now-defunct uptown outlet every night there'd be a group of people hanging out in front, giving off that vibe of having had too much to eat and not ready to get into their cars.
posted by morspin at 1:55 PM on June 3, 2016 [1 favorite]

Not all you can eat, but the best kept secret in Vancouver, in my opinion, is Sushi Itoga. It's near Stanley Park, and their sashimi is the best I've ever had - even compared to super expensive high end restaurants. They keep costs cheap by using a cafeteria-style set-up, and they use ocean wise fish. Awesome stuff!
posted by Conspire at 1:57 PM on June 3, 2016 [2 favorites]

Cheers Canageek! I too would love to find hidden secret places that are still super cheap!

I did two grad schools so I understand budgeting, but given that you're out here in Vancouver, I'd highly recommend finding a hundred bucks or so for a night of fine dining - West Coast style - where you don't have to get dressed up (even if it's not Japanese, qv Ana Lena, lower-priced Farmer's Apprentice). Like, a present to yourself.

If you do, research Octopus Garden near Vanier Park/Observatory/Royal Conservatory. They started out as another rando midling Japanese place >20 years ago (my first date-date was there), but in recent years is one of the most underrated elite-end places in town. Do shell out for the shots (but you don't necessarily have to shoot them).

If you want to go on safari for Richus kidsis spp. Vancouverensis, Rajio has contemporary experimental Japanese bistro and high end sashimis. Interesting cocktails. Live ebi is a treat, and they'll fry the head to a crisp for you afterwards. It's at 10th @ Alma, public transport-close to UBC. I haven't been this calendar year so it might not be cool anymore.
posted by porpoise at 7:40 PM on June 3, 2016

Rajio is part of a chain that includes Suika on Broadway and Kingyo on Denman. Rajio's specialty is kushi-katsu (fried stuff on a stick) so if you're not a fan of that you might find you have more options at the other locations.
posted by juv3nal at 3:10 PM on June 4, 2016

Hitoe Sushi is not a buffet, but it is by far the best affordable sushi in the city. It is run by actual sushi chefs and they have more than just run of the mill California rolls (including daily fish specials like Aji). Highly recommended from a fellow poor grad student.
posted by thebots at 4:38 PM on June 5, 2016

When we get to Vancouver from Victoria, we pretty much always go to Kyo Korean BBQ & Sushi House at 2993 Granville St @ 14th.
Huge all you can eat selection, you just fill out the form and they bring it to you, and you can do the Korean bbq as well for a nice change.
posted by drinkmaildave at 9:20 AM on June 6, 2016 [1 favorite]

Thank you all.
posted by Canageek at 11:35 AM on June 6, 2016

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