2054 Commercial Drive
T: 604 255 5550
After yet another disappointing meal on Commercial Drive recently, I took to Twitter to ask people about their favourite spots on The Drive. I was certain that there had to be some better spots than the ones that I have sampled and, thankfully, Twitter did not disappoint. I was given many suggestions but the one that was recommended the most was a little sushi restaurant called Kishimoto. I visited the very next day.
Having returned to Kishimoto a few times since that first visit, I can see why it was so strongly recommended – it is indeed a worthwhile destination on The Drive (although I wonder if some of its popularity is due to the lack of competition on The Drive?). Whilst I do believe the quality of the sushi is above-average, I think it is on par with other above-average local sushi restaurants, such as Fresh (in Yaletown) and Sushiyama (near Main Street), but slightly below Minami. And that is fine because the prices are considerably less than Minami.
I really can’t visit a restaurant that serves pressed salmon oshi sushi and not order it, so I’ve ordered that dish every time that I’ve visited Kishimoto (it is just so good!). It is almost as good as Minami’s version, but it is slightly more citrusy. However, at only $10.75 for a generous serving, compared with $15 at Minami, I am not complaining. I was interested to discover that they also offered a vegetarian pressed sushi version, made with asparagus, which I haven’t seen anywhere else. It fell a bit short, particularly when compared to the pressed salmon, but a good option for vegetarians nonetheless. I haven’t tried enough of the rest of the menu, due to the pressed salmon, to recommend other dishes but so far, so good. What I think Kishimoto excels at is the presentation and the small details (watch for the carrot butterflies and the beautiful daikon flowers).
Seating is quite limited and I can almost guarantee that there will likely be a line-up when you go, yes, even during the week. But you should know that the line moves quite fast so even if you think it is going to be a while, you may be pleasantly surprised.
Kishimoto is a great find on Commercial Drive, and one worth seeking out if you are in the area. I’m looking forward to sampling more of the menu during future visits, although it will be difficult to bypass their pressed salmon oshi sushi.