I always wonder how Sushi Tei has survived all these years. Only a few meters away from Fujiya, the small sushi to-go shop that constantly has a long lineup during lunch time in Downtown Vancouver, they have been fighting hard to stay alive in completing the war of affordable sushi.
Chicken Teriyaki Don vs. Chicken Teriyaki Don
For Sushi Tei’s Chicken Teriyaki Don ($6.95), the house-made sauce is very unique, the hints of vinegar and ginger reminds me the marinate for braised pork hock, a traditional Chinese dish prepared for mothers of newborns. So if you are used to the generic teriyaki sauce that tastes like Kikkoman, you might not be a big fan. To me the sauce is slightly off balanced, and could use a little bit more salt and sugar. The slightly pan fried chicken however, tastes fresh and moist.
For almost half of the price ($3.95), the Chicken Teriyaki Don from Fujija is small but still a pretty hearty meal. There are a couple things I love about what they do to the chicken – the slightly char-grilled chicken skin coated with sweet and savory teriyaki sauce, and the use of slightly caramelized green onion. This is a very comforting bowl of food.
The verdict. Although freshly prepared, the unique teriyaki sauce from Sushi Tei is debatable. Don’t let the idea of pre-packaging put you off – 1 minute and 45 seconds in microwave, the Chicken Teriyaiki Don from Fujiya will taste like freshly cooked.
Sushi vs. Sushi
This round we compared those 2 places on what you get for the same price.
Sushi Tei has a daily sushi roll special, such as this 12-piece combo ($6.95) that includes Dynamite Roll, Chopped Scallop Roll, Smoked Salmon Roll, and Yam Tempura Roll. First of all, the rolls are all very small. They all taste somewhat underwhelming. And I think it’s cheap when they call it Dynamite Roll, as they really should call it Prawn Tempura Roll – a piece of lettuce isn’t really enough of an upgrade to make it Dynamite Roll.
And my pick from Fujiya is Spider Roll ($4.95) and Gyoza ($2.25). As I cannot find a sushi roll that’s over $6 at Fujiya, I just grab Spider Roll, one of their priciest ones. Spider Roll is one of my favorites and it constantly reminds me how I fell in love with sushi for the very first time back in California. Although the roll is not not freshly made per order, I can still taste the crunch from the deep fried soft shell crab. There is a lot of crab meat which tastes quite decent. I even found crab roe in one of the pieces! Gyoza isn’t bad either for just over $2. But it needs about 30 secs in the microwave – I like my dumplings warm!
I have a backup opponent from Fujiya, Nigiri Combo ($6.95), which has the same price with Sushi Tei’s Roll Combo. Although it is a good deal for what you get: Salmon, Tuna, Saba (mackerel), Unagi (BBQ eel), Ika (quid), Tamago (fried egg), and Tako (octopus), I probably still prefer they are made after I order them at a restaurant.
Both places are pretty affordable. But for what I pay, I still prefer Fujiya over Sushi Tei.
Map and other reviews:
Map and other reviews: