Sushi Hachi 鮨八

December 06, 2011
I met up with Janice (Good Eat) and Kirby (Eating with Kirby) on Friday night for dinner at Sushi Hachi, a place that has been on my wish list for a long time. One thing in particular sparked my interest: the restaurant is only open for 15 hours/week (Tue-Sat 6-9 pm). This seems pretty amazing for a food establishment, so I was eager to check it out. I made a reservation well in advance, which was a good move because every table was reserved when we got there. We started with saba battera ($14.50) and chopped scallop roll ($3.50). I've wanted to try pressed sushi for a while, but it was really no different from regular nigiri other than its appearance. I liked the novelty factor though. The saba was soft, fresh, savoury, and expensive at almost $2.50 apiece. But I must say, it was the best saba I've had to date. The chopped scallop was fresh and tasty as well, but there was very little of it and most of the roll was just rice. I was wondering why it cost only $3.50...

We ordered BBQ sea snail ($4.50), known as 海螺 in Chinese, which came slightly charred on skewers. The seasoning was very light, nothing like Western BBQ. At the same time though, it wasn't bland at all and it was very easy to bite through despite being slightly chewy.

Janice suggested BBQ marinated kanpachi ($5), a small slab of fish cooked on the grill. It was quite tender, but it wasn't exactly impressive. It was just a regular piece of cooked fish.

Kirby wanted to try the BBQ salmon skin salad ($4.50). I'm not sure if salmon skin is usually served cold, but I didn't like it since the coldness made it a bit hard and chewy. Kirby seemed to like it though and she told us sometimes restaurants make the skin really bitter. At least this one didn't taste bitter at all.

We weren't full at all at this point, so we ordered another tray of sushi. Here we have the spicy salmon roll ($3.50), 2 sockeye salmon nigiri ($1.50 each), 3 amaebi nigiri ($3.50 each) and a toro nigiri ($2.50). The nigiri were the correct size (authentically speaking), as they were small enough to finish in one bite. Both the fish and raw prawn were very fresh and soft. I particularly enjoyed the fatty toro that melted away in my mouth. We all found the amaebi a tad slimy, but I think that's the nature of amaebi and the freshness made up for it.

At the end of the meal, none of us were full and we each paid around $20. This is not a cheap place, but the food is indeed very fresh and delicious. With that said, I'm not sure whether it's worth the price. I'm glad I tried the place out, but I doubt I would return regularly. I'd much rather just head to Takeya where the food might not be as good, but it comes pretty darn close.

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