Nao Sushi

I would pass by Nao Sushi whenever I visited JL’s house, but it never struck me as a restaurant I would like to go try because it was not conspicuous and I have never heard anyone talk about it. However, MilkTea has always wanted to try it out, and after asking around, it seemed like Nao Sushi was actually quite popular! Apparently it’s known for having delicious and authentic Japanese food (since it’s a Japanese-run restaurant), albeit on the pricier side.

Exterior of Nao Sushi

Right off the bat, I wanted to try their cream cheese roll. They call it the JB roll here. I hope that it doesn’t stand for Justin Bieber.

JB Roll – $3.50
5/5

The roll was very small, but each piece was bite-size which was nice. The cream cheese was soft and the flavour blended well with the smoked salmon. Smoked salmon and cream cheese, two of my favourites in one sushi. Mmm~ :)

Alaska Roll – $3.95
4/5

Sushi Garden’s Alaska rolls are still my favourite. This Alaska roll was again, smaller than what I’m used to, but the ingredients tasted delicious and fresh, and the avocado was soft and ripe.

Salmon Sashimi – $9.80
5/5

Sashimi Salad
5/5

Nao Sushi serves delicious sashimi salad. JL always orders a sashimi salad whenever we go to a Japanese restaurant, so I have tried sashimi salad from Suika, Sushi garden, Guu, and now Nao Sushi. Nao’s sashimi salad is different in that it’s topped with tortilla chips, which adds a crunch to the salad. This salad is pretty filling and for one person, it would probably constitute half a meal.

Ichi Roll – $8.50
4/5

The Ichi Roll is one of Nao Sushi’s special rolls and consists of crab, tobico, scallop, tamago, and avocado all wrapped in rice and rice paper instead of nori. It was my first time having a sushi that used rice paper instead of seaweed, but the rice paper didn’t have much flavour. The filling was good, and I could taste the crab.

Dragon Roll – $6.50
5/5

This special roll was eel topped with avocado. I thought that the avocado and sauce combo on top of the sushi looked beautiful. This tasted better than the Ichi Roll, and the avocado was perfect.

Seared Toro (top) – $1.80 & Seared Hamachi – $2.70
4/5 & 2/5

MilkTea has never had seared nigiri before, so we ordered the toro and hamachi. The nigiri had a bit of wasabi between the fish and the rice, and I liked the toro better than the hamachi.

Chicken Kamameshi
4/5

Chicken Kamameshi (inside)

Kamameshi is a Japanese rice dish cooked in an iron pot. It came in a cute little pot, and there was a little rice paddle included as well to scoop the rice into a bowl. There were pieces of chicken, and carrots and snow peas. Overall it was a very healthy rice dish, not too oily, but it lacked a bit of flavour.

Asari Sakamushi
4/5

Asari Sakamushi are asari clams steamed with Japanese sake. It’s simple, yet delicious. The clams did not have a fishy taste, and the broth that the clams were steamed in tasted great as well. It’s the perfect dish to order on a cold winter day.

I would definitely go back to Nao Sushi again. Next time I want to try their lunch specials!

The Good:
– Great tasting food
– Delicious sashimi salad
– Wonderful service

The Bad:
– It’s not exactly cheap, but the quality makes up for it
– Small portions, so you have to order quite a lot to get full

Nao Sushi on Urbanspoon

More Ali Shan Restaurant

Find the blog post on my first visit to Ali Shan Restaurant here: Ali Shan Restaurant

Yesterday I blogged about the visit to Ali Shan Restaurant (from a few weeks back), and today Mochi decided to go there again for lunch. My guess is that he couldn’t resist the picture of the deep fried yam balls! I already had lunch, so I just ordered snacks (deep fried yam balls and shaved ice) while Mochi ordered an chicken filet and tomato sauce omelette.

Omelette Rice, Deep Fried Chicken & Tomato Sauce – $8.20
3/5

This was Mochi’s omelette in tomato sauce, completed with a deep fried chicken filet. I must admit: I stole more bites than I should have. :P The potato salad tasted great, and the chicken was tender on the inside, and crispy on the outside. Yum! The omelette itself was filled with rice that had been tossed in ketchup so nothing too special there, and I didn’t like the way that the egg was prepared today. This tomato sauce omelette paled in comparison to the curry omelette I had last time, both in terms of appearance and taste. I also didn’t like the yellow vegetable. Mochi and I were both unsure as to what it was.. probably some sort of candied vegetable.. Possibly candied sweet potato??

Deep Fried Yam Balls – $3.50
5/5

[For my complete review on this snack, please see my blog post from my first visit: Ali Shan Restaurant]

It was a hot day today, so I decided to give Ali Shan’s shaved ice a try. Their shaved ice actually had a separate menu. You pick toppings and the price reflects that: it was $4.50 for 3 toppings, and $0.50 for each additional topping. I picked the taro cubes (芋圓), red beans, and taro. It also came with a sauce; I went with the condensed milk.

Shaved Ice (3 toppings) – $4.50
2/5

It took awhile for this order to come, because the taro cubes took a long time to prepare. The first thing I noticed was that the whole thing was melting very quickly. The taro cubes were chewy and tasty and it was the best topping out of the three. Red beans were what you would expect, but the  taro tasted horrible. They had a sour taste and did not blend well with the rest of the shaved ice. You can’t really go wrong with condensed milk, but as the ice melted too quickly, the condensed milk all gathered at the bottom and made this dessert too sweet to finish. I probably won’t be coming back again for their shaved ice. ><“

Ali Shan Restaurant

During the school year, Mochi and I had taken a course together which ended quite late in the evening (at around 7:15pm). We usually have dinner together after, and one night we weren’t sure we should go for dinner. Then Mochi remembered this restaurant that was located beside Crystal Mall and suggested that we go there. I didn’t have any objections of course, since they served Taiwanese food and I always enjoy trying out new restaurants.

Ali Shan Restaurant - Exterior

I have often passed by Ali Shan Restaurant when I go to Crystal Mall (which is not often since I find the mall to be too messy and disorganized) but have never ventured inside before since I have never heard anyone mention the place.

It was busy when we arrived, even though it was already past 8pm. We were promptly seated. The interior of the restaurant had nice decor and lighting, with some flat-screen TV’s. Mochi advised me not to order bubble tea, because they don’t make good drinks here.

I looked through the menu and decided immediately that I wanted to get the curry pork omelette. Mochi settled for the braised beef noodle. We also got Taiwanese chicken nuggets and something called “deep fried yam balls”.

For drinks, we could either choose red tea, or their soup of the day (radish soup). We both settled for red tea.

Red Tea – Complimentary
5/5

This red tea tasted just like the kind that I would get back in Taiwan. It had just the right level of sweetness, and a hint of wheat taste.

The first dish to arrive was Mochi’s braised beef noodles.

Braised Beef Noodle – $6.90
4/5

This beef noodle is like the kind that you would find in Taiwan. They gave a generous portion of beef and vegetables, and the noodles were not over-cooked. The soup base tasted flavourful, albeit a little too salty.

Next up were the Taiwanese chicken nuggets:

Chicken Nuggets – $4.20
3/5

These chicken nuggets tasted alright, but I think that they didn’t add enough basil. “The One” still has the best Taiwanese chicken nuggets in Burnaby.

Curry Pork Omelette – $8.20
4/5

The pork cutlet was nice and crispy, without being too dry, and the omelette was filled with curry rice. The curry was different than the usual curry that I’m used to (I’m used to the Japanese kind; this curry was a bit saltier), but it still tasted good. I enjoyed the potato salad as it helped to balance out the meal.

Deep fried yam balls – $3.50
5/5

This was my favourite dish of the night. It was sweet because of the yam, and had a chewy texture. It was kind of like a mix between bubble waffles and mochi. It reminded me of pon de ring donuts from Mister Donuts (see link here: Mister Donut). For some reason, they don’t offer this kind of donut here in Canada.. Which is a shame, because they are my favourite. >_<

All in all, I found the food at Ali Shan Restaurant to be cheap and yummy. Mochi and I were both stuffed by the end of the meal and still had leftovers to take home. Their service didn’t leave much of an impression on me so it must have been okay. :P

The Good
– Cheap price
– Authentic Taiwanese food
– Comfortable restaurant

The Bad
–  Some food were a bit on the salty side
Ali Shan Restaurant 阿里山品味餐廳 on Urbanspoon

Boston Pizza

Last night I went for a late dinner at Boston Pizza in Burnaby (beside Metrotown). There was a line-up because of the Canucks playoff game that was going on at the time. It was the end of the third period and Nashville had tied the game at 1-1.. It was going into overtime. Finally a table opened up. By this time, I was starving.

First off, we ordered BBQ chicken wings to start.

BBQ Chicken Wings

The sour cream dip that came with these wings were delicious! The wings tasted great by themselves too. The meat was tender and flavorful and came right off the bone.

Next up, the pasta and burger:

Boston Lasagna

Whiskey River Burger with Fries

The lasagna was alright, but I liked the burger better. The lasagna noodles were kind of dry and the sauces didn’t mix together all that nicely. Compared to the whiskey river burger, it just wasn’t as appetizing. The burger came with a juicy beef patty as well as a few slices of bacon and BBQ sauce. The whiskey river burger at Red Robin’s is still the best though!

Ratings:

Food 3/5
Service 3/5
Value 3/5
Overall: 3/5

Boston Pizza (Burnaby Metrotown) on Urbanspoon