Best Japanese Upscale 2015

Best Japanese Upscale winners of Vancouver Magazine's 26th Annual Restaurant Awards

Best Japanese Upscale winners of Vancouver Magazine’s 26th Annual Restaurant Awards

  • Gold (tie): Zest
  • Gold (tie): Tojo’s
  • Bronze: Miku
  • Honourable Mentions: Blue Water Cafe + Raw Bar, Kiriri

 There were gasps of surprise last year when Zest liberated this category’s Gold title from Tojo’s for the first time in the history of our awards. This year, we declare a tie, our judges evenly split in their preference for chef Yoshiaki Maniwa’s “contemporary, cerebral” Japanese cuisine at Zest and Hidekazu Tojo’s legendary Tojo’s, which is “easy to take for granted, but is a world-famous restaurant we’re lucky to have.” Zest once again drew special-mention raves for its $90 omakase menu (24 hours’ notice required), which, says one judge, “will convince you that Maniwa and Tatsuya Katagiri are among the best chefs in the city.” Tojo’s, meanwhile, never fails to offer a flawless (and deservedly costly) dining experience: whether raw or cooked, the unwavering freshness and invention of every plate make it a gastronomic shrine every local and visitor needs to experience at least once. Miku (Bronze), which introduced the city to aburi-style (flame-seared) sushi, impressed with its “grand, sophisticated” new waterfront room as much as with its sprawling menu of sea-and-land temptations. Honourable Mentions: Blue Water Cafe + Raw Bar, Kiriri