Tag Archives: yakitori

Kamei Royale on West Hastings

Kamei Royale Japanese Restaurant Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - ZomatoLast summer, they had a grand opening at their new location on Hastings. We returned with a group of 15 people for the Christmas holidays. The lady there who I have seen for many years at the old location was still there and was serving us.

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The restaurant now had a modern feel but with traditional Japanese decor. Their tatami rooms that they had all along the walls of the old place were no longer incorporated, instead had chic like bar seats, modern slick booths or tables with chairs.

idearabbit_kameiroyale_hastings6 idearabbit_kameiroyale_hastings7I ordered a Chawanmushi $5.95 with prawn and vegetables in steamed egg custard. It was really fluffy and served in the traditional dishware, it always reminds me of Japan. It’s rare to find a good chawanmushi, let alone any restaurants serving them in the first place. idearabbit_kameiroyale_hastings9

Yakitori $5.50 for two skewers of grilled chicken with traditional BBQ sauce. Really good. Would have liked more of the charcoal-y taste though. idearabbit_kameiroyale_hastings4 idearabbit_kameiroyale_hastings5

I also had a Salmon Nigiri $3 and Tamago Nigiri $2.75. Now I don’t like huge pieces of nigiri, especially with a ton of rice to cheap out, but this was ridiculous. There were barely any rice underneath. I also got confused on the menu because the nigiri were under ‘Sushi’. Yes, sushi is the broad category. Everything with fish and rice together is sushi. Nigiri-sushi is the one with the fish on top and rice underneath. Maki-sushi is the classic rolls with the seaweed on the outside. Oshi-sushi is sushi the ingredients pressed usually into a box shaped mold. I’ve never seen it categorized like this anywhere else, so I was a bit perplexed. But maybe that’s just me.

Others ordered what looked to be some amazing dishes, and they seemed to enjoy it. idearabbit_kameiroyale_hastings8

Tiger Mayo $11.95 Almond coated prawn deep friend served with homemade cajun mayonnaise sauce.


Sashimi Vancouver $25 (9 pieces) Sockeye Salmon, Yellowtail, Tuna Belly and Albacore Tuna.

Service was pretty good. The server allowed us to take one booth just for jackets and bags as it was winter time, and a lot of people had bulky things. The price is higher, but it’s always been high for Kamei Royale. Quality is always good though. I might have mentioned this in the previous post for the old location. If you have a guest from out of town and want to take them to a Japanese restaurant, this is the ‘safest’ place to go, meaning you will get consistent good service, food and atmosphere.

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Hiro Sushi

Hiro Sushi Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - ZomatoWith so many sushi restaurants in town, and after trying years of different sushi, and slowly moving up for better quality than quantity, I stopped going to lower-end, cheap sushi places. Not only did I want quality, I have had several bounds of food poisoning, or simply not feeling well after some fishy sushi. It’s just wasn’t worth it.

From the outside, I could tell by the bold red and yellow signage that this wasn’t an expensive place. But Sheepie was up to it.

idearabbit_hiro_sushi1 idearabbit_hiro_sushi3When we entered, there were no Asians dining. Oh oh… and it was less than half empty. The walls were covered in murals of Spanish or Greek like scenery… must have been some European restaurant before. They kept it as it is, and now had Japanese decor hanging in places. idearabbit_hiro_sushi2 I ordered the 3 items with miso soup combo for $10.95. With 88 items to choose from, there’s something for everyone to order. Brown rice is available with extra charge.


The miso soup came out right after we ordered. It was super quick!


I chose Yakitori from the Appetizer list. It was covered in panko, and was grilled flat. Unusual, but tasted ok. However, it wouldn’t be something I order again.


Gyoza of 5 pieces were good.

idearabbit_hiro_sushi6 Salmon Avocado roll had really large pieces, making it a bit hard to it, but otherwise, it was decent.


Sheepie had the Hiro House Combo $11.95 (14 pieces) of Hiro House roll, Salmon roll and 3 pieces of salmon. The roll pieces were huge. The salmon nigiri was pretty good.

The service and food was satisfactory, but wouldn’t be on the top list of go-to sushi places.

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Kibune Sushi Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - ZomatoAfter all these years (over a decade) in Vancouver, I don’t know how I could have missed this place! Kibune Sushi opened its doors at this original location on Canada Day, July 1st 1982!

Even when I was walking towards the entrance, it gave me a feeling of home… some little sushi place in the neighbourhood where I grew up as a child.

idearabbit_kibune1The round window by the entrance added a nice touch.When I stepped in, it was even more nostalgic. It felt authentic. Mmmmm… the smell. The atmosphere. The detail of the roof inside the restaurant was interesting. The semi-private rooms with the walls separating each of the tables on one side was nice. Though the tatami were a bit stained…

idearabbit_kibune2They are really busy, so make a reservation if you plan on dining there. Sheepie and I were lucky, and got to sat at the counter. There, the trays were already set and we got our warm hand towels.

idearabbit_kibune5I ordered the Negitoro Maki $5.50. It was really good. I could taste a hint of vinegar in the rice – which you will find in authentic, good sushi restaurants. They didn’t cheap out by having the underside (when you flipped the roll piece) half empty with rice and filling. They were all filled to the end. In fact, in a real sushi restaurant, they would never serve the ends of a roll to a customer.

idearabbit_kibune4New York Maki (since 1982) $5.50. Lots of rice and the fresh green sprouts were a nice touch. Nothing spectacular, and a bit too large for eating without bulging like a chipmunk, or rice and fillings falling apart as you bite in the middle.

idearabbit_kibune8I also had the Yakitori $6 for 2 skewers.Tasty sauce (with a side of hot chiili powders – which aren’t really hot at all), and soft juicy chicken.

idearabbit_kibune6 idearabbit_kibune7Sheepie ordered the Assorted Sushi $17 which came served on a boat. The boat wasn’t anything we haven’t seen elsewhere, but the presentation was really good and the ingredients seemed really fresh. Sheepie always checks under the ‘neta’ (the top raw fish, though) to see if there are wasabi on the rice (or on the neta). If there is, that usually indicates an authentic nigiri. There were. But I can understand why chefs here in North America has decided to take them out as not everyone likes wasabi, and it’s hard to take it out once it’s in there. I had his salmon nigiri and it was pretty good.

The food and service was really good. Is on the pricier side for sushi without the eleborate, high end look of some restaurants like Miku, but it’s definitely more authentic or rather, traditional. They don’t use MSG and they spend a great deal of time preparing their soup.

If you want to travel to Japan, but don’t have the time nor money, try out Kibune for some real Japanese sushi experience. Make sure to call in to make reservations – they are popular and full!

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