Just last night I was enjoying dinner with some fellow food bloggers (which I will soon blog about) when the topic of what restaurants we’ve discovered recently that we really liked. After thinking a little, Kura came to mind – and how!
Kura is a Japanese-run restaurant that focuses heavily on sushi (though they do offer a wide range of other Japanese dishes). Located on Kingsway near Metrotown, the gorgeous heavy wood doors with cladding belie the rather modern interior of this fairly large restaurant.
The menu, signs and even the chopstick wrapper indicate that Kura exists in Tokyo as well as in Vancouver. A bit of Google searching hasn’t pulled up any conclusive results (but it does make me want to go back to Japan!). Anyhow, even if it is a transplant from the land of the rising sun, there are many westernized rolls, including a “Crazy Canuck” roll which is pretty darn far from an authentic :)
On the the food! The very friendly and attentive waitresses brought us all 3 parts of the very extensive menu. The front includes a lots of a la carte options, and a special of the day sheet indicates what is freshest or in season, but, further back into the menu there are some combos that are pretty fantastic. I ordered Special A ($16) which I suppose is getting near the price of the AYCE slop, but I’d happily pay a bit more to get all of my favourite things and have them well prepared too. My dinner came with an Ebi Sunomono that was refreshing with a mild vinegar-based dressing and a good “tablespoon” of small shrimp, and a bowl of good and salty homemade miso soup (though I’m not sure what would constitute “homemade” in this case).
After the starters, we got the rest of our meals. An order of Tempura was presented with two shrimp, and at least 4 other veggie pieces – breading was crispy and deep fried properly, but perhaps a little heavy. The Agedashi Tofu (which I normally love) was a bit disappointing – the pieces were too big and feel apart.
By now, I’m already really full, but there’s still an 11-piece plate of assorted sushi to eat! Three each of the tuna and salmon maki showed that the restaurant obviously use a decent quality nori, the rice is also well prepared as these weren’t gummy or hard at all. The california roll was as good as you can get given the use of krab, but I will give them credit for not going crazy with mayo in the mix. The nigiri sushi is really quite good here, with big pieces of tuna, salmon or shrimp (on a pre-wasabi-ed) form of rice. I was too stuffed to finish this all and ended up giving some of my dish to Chris, who himself had already had the same starters, side dishes and a 12-piece nigiri (and maki) combo in Special D (~$18).
We were very happy about our meal, and found that both quantity and quality was definitely present. I understand from another blogger that lunch specials are available, which sounds intriguing.
Kura appears to be open late every day, they take debit and credit card, and have some pretty amazing looking takeout platters (though, if you don’t eat in the restaurant, you’ll miss out on seeing the beautiful gyotaku (look it up!) :)