Sunday, June 27, 2010 0

Mariko Japanese Restuarant - One bad sushi experience on Bloor

By kat in

At the end of April, I promised Lilian I'd go to Hyde Park with her to look at the sakura blossoms that bloom for a week every year. After a lot of phone calls, a lot of waiting for people to arrive and then a lot of photos, a group of us left Hyde Park for Bloor Street to grab some dinner. Coming out of Bathurst Station, we saw this sign:

All you can eat for $10.99! (it was windy so the banner folded on the last 9) WOW. We were starving so we couldn't resist.

Then we realized there was a catch: $10.99 for 70+ items which NONE included any seafood. Not even fake crab or grilled salmon. The 70+ items were essentially all the other cooked dishes at Japanese buffet without seafood. The $14.99 was the real deal with sashimi and cooked dishes. We came in the restaurant hungry for some raw fish, so we had no choice but to choose the second option. Besides, $15.99 wasn't so bad (it was a friday).

The 105+ items menu (click for larger pic). As you can see, they didn't offer much variety of raw fish.

Stir-fried chicken udon. Very peppery.

I think this was supposed to be grilled teriyaki chicken.

Shrimp tempura; looked quite oily and didn't look that crispy.

Urban ordered fried chicken at a Japanese buffet for some reason.

Finally the seafood that we wanted came! Salmon sushi pizza, eel nigiri, I think that's fried egg nigiri?, inari, and artificial crab nigiri.

Dragon roll (avocado on top and tempura shrimp inside), avocado & eel roll, california roll, butterfish nigiri, some more inari, salmon sushi and avocado sushi. Clearly, avocado was in season.

I forgot to take a picture of the sashimi before we inhaled it but here's the butterfish sashimi and 1 piece of salmon sashimi left.

JT ordered a spicy salmon handroll at the very end and it was the first time he spit back out one. The salmon was mushy like it was pounded by those meat pounders people use on thick slices of beef. He said it didn't taste like salmon anymore.

In the end, we all agreed that it was one of the worst Japanese buffets we ever had and it was completely not worth the $20 we paid ($15.99 + tax + tips). What's strange is that JT and I have actually been here around a year ago and I remember it wasn't as bad as now. If it was, I knew my mind would've made a note to avoid this place at all costs (including starving). Oh well, there's plenty of Japanese sushi restaurants on Bloor for the same price, much better quality and larger variety. This place had only a handful of sashimi items.

Mariko Japanese Restaurant
551 Bloor St. West, Toronto, ON M5S 1Y6
(416) 516-3030

Mariko Japanese on Urbanspoon

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