Why are we mentioning a Japanese restaurant that serves no mushrooms on our website? Two reasons: the food and Mr. Sada, the personable chef in charge.
Of course, Octopus’ Garden does other things well, too. The restaurant’s décor of wood and subdued light—with the hull of a boat holding a few tables across from the sushi bar—is unique. Well-loved by locals, those in the know would prefer others not to discover it and crowd them out.
It’s a quiet spot. There is none of the yelling (even for no reason) you often hear at some of the downtown establishments which must think that constant racket is somehow Japanese. Behind the sushi bar everyone works quietly with an economy of movement, and waitresses wearing kimono serve the guests.
Sada (a friendly fellow who sometimes visits with customers and tells them every day is Sada-day) is passionate about octopi. He has themed the entire restaurant around the creatures. The hashioki holding your chopsticks is an octopus, there is octopus art on the walls and even the heating ducts in the ceiling are designed to look like a giant octopus.
But the main star at Octopus’ Garden is the top-quality food. There are the traditional Japanese standards served on attractive pottery; however, Sada also offers creative dishes that show unique imagination at work. His Taipei Roll really reflects the tastes of Taiwanese cuisine. Some such as Yellow Submarine or Mr. Beans are whimsically named, but packed with flavour.
He will also prepare “Beautiful Art Sashimi” for those who want their eyes as well as their taste-buds blown away. While there aren’t many offerings that are vegetarian or vegan, for anyone with dietary restrictions Octopus’ Garden will go out of its way to prepare exactly what you can eat. It doesn’t get better than that.
1995 Cornwall Ave Vancouver, BC