Maruyama has taken over the old Kimura location on Rupert Street. Chef Yoshiya Maruyama was the previous raw bar chef at Blue Water Cafe and has finally opened his own restaurant in East Vancouver.
When my friend told me about it, I got super excited because I love sushi. A few of us went to try their omakase nigiri tasting.
The space isn’t very large, there are 4 seats at the bar and a few tables on either side of the restaurant. Always best to make reservations.
Omakase Nigiri Tasting
We made reservations to sit at the bar so we could get a full experience and have a chat with the Chef.
They have 2 options for omakase nigiri tasting – $25 and $60 option. After consulting with the Chef, we decided to take the plunge and order the $60 tasting as it has more premium fish used in the set.
When the tasting begins, they ask you if you want wasabi on it or not. Half of the group went with wasabi and the other half went without. The omakase tasting isn’t for everyone as it only has a minimum of 7 pieces. Those with a large stomach might not get full.
Sanma is very soft and has lots of fat. It is brushed with a bit of sauce and covered in a shiso leaf.
This nigiri, I have no idea what it was. In my notes I wrote down “asa”, but I couldn’t find this type of fish online. Either way, it tasted really good.
Akaji was what I wrote down, but I think I miss heard so I have no idea what this is. It is encrusted in the chef’s secret kombu topping, which is kelp.
Isaki nigiri has a slightly chewy taste. Isaki is a grunt fish.
Tobiuo is a flying fish with a soft texture perfect for nigiri.
Tai also has a slight chewy texture but it is rich in flavour.
Scallop Nigiri has a few drop of yuzu and then sprinkled with a bit of sea salt.
Chutoro is a delicious tuna with higher fat content. Very delicious too.
Otoro is the most expensive cut of tuna taken from the lowest part of the belly next to the head. It’s high in fat and super flavourful.
Other Nigiri on the menu
Hokkaido Uni is an additional menu item and when the chef was telling us about it, we didn’t realize it was $19 each. He did warn us that it was expensive and no normal customer would order this and he makes little to no profit off this item.
He adds a speck of wasabi to the top and its ready to eat. The flavour of the uni was amazing, but it was really expensive. It’s an expensive ingredient, so it’s not for all.
Anago is sea eel and he torches it before it gets served. For $5.50, this nigiri was more easy on the wallet compared to the uni.
The flavour and look is unlike what you would find at most Japanese restaurants. It’s fresh and has an amazing taste. He uses his own secret sauce to add on top.
Matcha ice cream with red bean is how we ended out meal. This was part of the omakase, I think because we weren’t charged for it. or maybe it was because we spent so much.
Overall, it was a pretty expensive meal, but its nice to splurge once in a while. I find that the nigiri are his works of art and should really be enjoyed. You need a high level of appreciation for sushi to fully enjoy this experience.
We Rate Maruyama:
3883 Rupert Street, Vancouver