I was in the mood for sushi so I opened up my Zomato app in downtown Toronto. Not surprisingly, a 100 places popped up (including a place I think was called 100 sushi). I was quickly grouping them into a number of categories:
- Cheap, no frills places where a California roll runs you $4 and you’re lucky if you find anything fancier than a dynamite roll on the menu.
- All you can eat joints where quantity usually beats quality for at least $25.
- Omakase, where you hope the chef gives you all you can eat for a good chunk of change.
- Moderately priced destinations boasting nice decors, signature rolls and even some uni if it’s in season.
- Places were sushi is an afterthought among a number of other bite size delights such as izakaya.
- Super expensive (ie. access to expense account, trying to impressive your friends or hoping to get laid) locales.
Before becoming zomato, urbanspoon used to have an app which looked like a slot machine. You’d identify an area, type of food and price range and voila…it would spit out an option. It was a brainless and chancy endevour but I kind of miss it, especially considering it now required me to actually ponder my options.
I quickly omitted option one since I have an expense report and my son, whose sushi diet consists solely of California rolls, wasn’t with me. I also omitted six because my expense account isn’t that big, I was alone and not looking to hook up. Two was off the table because it’s January and my Christmas girth was telling me all you can eat was not on option. Three would take too long and when your primary objective is sushi five just doesn’t cut it. This left option three which I further narrowed down to Yuzunohana, the relative longstanding Adelaide street favorite.
At first the service was steallar. It was a chilly and I was quickly offered some green tea as I was seated at the sushi counter. As I peered over the menu, I was offered a spinach amuse bouche which was quite fresh and delicate. I decided on a few of the chef’s sashimi choices including King Salmon and an order of uni. Both came quickly and were ridiculously fresh and beautifully presented. I was reminded once again why uni is one of the most unique foods around. It was silky and naughty.
I also went with my sushi standards; miso soup, gyoza and spicy tuna rolls along with their house specialty yuzu roll . The dumplings were some of the best I’ve had in Toronto. The miso was spot on as well. The rolls were acceptable but average. I was a bit disappointed about both the taste and appearance of the spicy rolls. The yuzu rolls (which was topped with torched salmon and scallop) were nicely presented but were overly sweet for my liking. With my tea long gone and my dishes empty, I did need to wait a bit for the bill which seemed to correspond with the surge of online orders from uber eats, foodie, hurrier and whatever other food delivery services that might exist. The ground zero of assembly was right beside me and the paper bags were flying out the door as I was ignored just a little bit.
As I was sitting there, I had a little deja yuzu. I’m not sure how long Yuzu No Hana has been around, but I swear I went here with a buddy in the 90s. Throughout the night I felt like the Flash or another tv character who has frequent recollections of past events. I recall we were smashed and decided we were going to drop in for a quick sake. I remember being told that they weren’t a bar and that we needed to get food in order to have a drink.
Although I wasn’t overly thrilled by the sushi rolls the gyoza, sashimi and miso soup were excellent. All in all I enjoyed the experience and it met the aforementioned criteria for a mid-range sushi joint even without the help of the urbanspoon slot machine.