The other day I had the relatively rare (but nice) opportunity to have a quick lunch with my mom. It’s not often that we can hang out, just the two of us, and talk about family, life, and other topics that any self-respecting boy who’s maturing and getting ready to get married should become increasingly familiar with, such as Costco memberships and where to pick up cheap groceries.
Yep, I’m totally turning out to be Mr. Suburban Chinese guy. And strangely, I’m okay with that. I can’t really keep up Gangnam-styling for 8 hours straight. And I’ve suddenly developed an enjoyment for grocery shopping in quiet supermarkets on weekend nights with WW. The transformation is almost complete.
But I digress (gee, ya think?). Today we decided to go for Daisuki Sushi, yet another Japanese owned by non-Japanese people, located in Markham, close to the site of my future home. Interestingly, this restaurant had an extensive Korean menu (i.e. bibimbap), but the wait staff that day were 100% from mainland China. Huh.
Coming in, we actually already have a good idea of what we want. The best part about this place is its ridiculously low priced weekday lunch specials. My mom and I got the same thing: Dynamite Roll (which in Canada means sushi roll stuffed with tempura and avocado), assorted tempura, miso soup, rice and salad in a bento box. For somewhere around $7.95. If you wanted to go a bit simpler, there are even $5.95 options available for you. Again, weekdays only though.
When we were waiting for the food, it quickly became obvious what the biggest problem with this place was: the wait time itself. The server didn’t mention to us that getting the fried stuff will take much longer than the other orders, so we actually sat for 15-20 minutes watching other people who ordered after us get served while we were just drinking our soup. Luckily, a conversation about Costco is always riveting.
Don’t get me wrong, the servers didn’t give us attitude or were rude. It’s just that it’s about, oh, 150% clear to me that the guy’s mind was somewhere else, perhaps thinking about his hot girlfriend or the allure of coming home after his shift to play Call of Duty. As such, he served us with the blankest expression this side of Keanu Reeves, and seemed to not grasp the concept that lunch specials are supposed to be quick because, you know, people are working.
The food itself was good. It was a nice, hefty portion, and for all our complaining about the wait time, at least the tempura batter was really fresh and crispy, with no soggyness or strange aftertaste that usually presents itself if the oil is a bit off. So the food was good, with the only criticism being that the rice being used for the sushi was a bit too dense and sticky for my liking. Again, at these prices, I’m really not complaining much. In fact, the tempura dipping sauce became a personal favourite of mine. Since tempura, by definition, is bland, I’ve always preferred a sharper and sweeter sauce to dip my lovely battered shrimp into, which is precisely what I got here.
The ambience of the place was pretty good. The restaurant was near-spotless (no, really, there were almost no decor of any kind on the walls, just some pastel green paint) and very clean. The bathroom felt like a powder room in a relatively new home, i.e. it didn’t feel grungy or industrial and was quite nice. Everything in the restaurant screams out “good, but not great”.
And in a way, that’s probably the place’s main problem.
Good price aside, there’s very little to set it apart from the other 5,197 sushi restaurants in York Region. While the food was good, it wasn’t spectacular, and the wait times and constant dream-like state of the wait staff (I had to remind them that there is 10% off for a separate takeout order we had, and he said “Oh OK” o_0) definitely contributed to me feeling quite ‘meh’ about this place. It’s worth a visit if you pass by around this neck of the woods, but probably not if you go out and seek it. They also have an AYCE menu, with very reasonable prices ($11.99 for lunch), so that may be something worth trying out too.
–Final verdict: Boleh Makan!
9275 Hwy 48
Markham, ON L6E 0E9