Best Formal Japanese 2010

Gold: Tojo’s

Silver: Miku
Bronze: Octopus’ Garden
Honourable Mention: En Cuisine
Honourable Mention: Blue Water Cafe + Raw Bar

In a city where mushy, mediocre sashimi is handed out every half-block, Tojo has to be recognized for the astonishing alchemy he works with the bounty from our oceans.” Silver to Miku for high style from a small Japanese restaurant chain specializing in aburi (blowtorched sushi); our judges especially loved the myriad takes on spot prawns (including the heads, tempura-style). Octopus’ Garden (Bronze) turns out inventive rolls like the maki soba: crab and oba leaf wrapped around buckwheat noodle and deep-fried in ginger soup. Honourable Mentions to En for “avocado salad, calamari rice bridge, and haccho miso lamb” and to the Blue Water’s Raw Bar for Yoshi Tabo’s sophisticated sushi and sashimi.