One would think that by now, I would have covered at least one sushi restaurant in every area of Greater Vancouver. However, I recently discovered one blatant omission: North Delta. I enlisted the help of xSupaD, the one person I know who consumes more sushi than me, and he suggested that we go to Sushi Wara. Aside from being an expert at dashcams, cars, and finding grammatical errors in my blog posts, he is also an expert at accurately describing the flavour and texture of sushi in much detail as well as pointing out any flaws. I think I've lost track of how many times I've told him to join the food blogger army.
Located just a 5-minute drive south of Strawberry Hill Shopping Centre, Sushi Wara is one of the classier, higher-priced Japanese restaurants in the area. The restaurant is Korean-operated and is actually part of a small chain of restaurants with two other locations on Vancouver Island. We came in on a Thursday for lunch, and I was surprised that the restaurant was virtually full when I walked in.
Edamame - B+
They started us off with a complimentary dish of Edamame! These were generally fresh and tasty.
Toro Nigiri - B+
Salmon Nigiri - B
Chopped Scallop Nigiri - B+
The Toro Nigiri came with fresh, melty toro, but the sushi rice was too tightly packed and went against the soft texture of the toro. The Salmon Nigiri was also fresh and came in a generous cut. The Chopped Scallop Nigiri came with chopped scallop so sweet that it reminded me of vanilla ice cream. It was also very large.
TNT Roll - A-
To appease xSupaD's love of crunchy tempura bits, we ordered the TNT Roll, which came with deep-fried prawn, avocado, cucumber, spicy tuna, and tempura bits. The flavour of the prawn tempura was savoury and prominent, while the spicy tuna was very soft. The roll was a good contrast of soft and crunchy textures, and the spicy sauce did not overwhelm the roll.
Seafood Motoyaki - B+
The Seafood Motoyaki came in a petite portion size and consisted mainly of salmon, tuna, and shrimp. Topped with spices to accentuate the flavour of the tangy mayonnaise, this Seafood Motoyaki did not disappoint.
Ebi Mayo - B-
The Ebi Mayo came with the standard mayonnaise dip as well as a sweet chili dip. Both dips worked well with the prawns, but the prawns themselves were overdone. They ended up dry and not flavourful. The batter on the prawns was crunchy, but there were also some hard bits meshed in as well.
Chicken Karaage - B+
The Chicken Karaage had a nice crispiness and was dressed with a mix of peanut sauce and mayonnaise. We found it tender, but not particularly juicy. xSupaD experimented a bit and discovered that dipping the Chicken Karaage in the sweet chili sauce for the Ebi Mayo made it taste significantly better.
Spicy Salmon Roll - C+
After making xSupaD try some of almost every dish I ordered, he was quite stuffed (he also ordered a whole donburi for himself), so I helped him finish some of his Spicy Salmon Roll. Unfortunately, there wasn't enough salmon in the roll, so it basically turned into the Spicy Sauce Roll instead. Mmm... all I could taste was the spicy sauce and the rice.
The service was friendly, but sparse. We had to ask for tea or water. The food was more than serviceable, albeit a little expensive for the quality compared to what you can find in Vancouver. However, judging from the number of the customers inside the restaurant, this could well be one of the more solid choices for sushi in the vicinity.