I hadn’t seen Juanita in a while so when she suggested meeting up for lunch one day, I readily agreed. I didn’t feel like making a decision on where to eat so Juanita gave me a couple of choices. I don’t remember what all the choices were but one of them was Miku and since it had been quite a while since my last visit, I chose Miku. The restaurant itself is located at the bottom of an office building in the financial district of downtown Vancouver so it may be a bit hard to spot if it is your first time there.
After Juanita and I settled in at our table, we both ordered some tea as we perused the menu.
We were both about to order the Miku Zen for lunch, which is a selection of Miku’s seasonal and specialty items when we decided to check with the server to see what she would recommend. She told us that the Miku Zen is especially good for first time visitors to the restaurant but if we didn’t mind, she would recommend something different for us. We both ended up nixing the Miku Zen and went with her suggestions instead.
I ordered the Miku Aburi Sushi Select ($15), which had a selection of 9 different aburi, roll, and oshi sushi. I don’t remember what the roll on the far right was called but it had cucumber and tuna. The tuna itself was very fresh although it had a tad too much mayo for my taste. The aburi salmon (bottom middle) was just as good as I remembered it from my last visit. The salmon was lightly seared, which really brought out the rich fattiness of the fish and went very well with the creamy Miku sauce drizzled on top. On its own, this may have been too rich and creamy but the thinly sliced jalapeño pepper cut through the richness and added a spicy kick. I’m a huge saba (mackerel) fan so I also really liked the aburi saba (bottom left). Saba is a naturally fatty fish and the searing combined with a light miso sauce really accentuated its delicious flavour.
The Select platter was finished off with 3 pieces of nigiri sushi (left to right): hamachi (yellowtail), ebi, and albacore tuna. Hamachi is naturally very flavourful and fatty so there wasn’t much added to the nigiri. It was lightly dressed in a miso sauce and topped with a dollop of wasabi. The ebi nigiri was also lightly grilled and had a charcoally flavoured to it. Unlike some ebi nigiri that I’ve had before, the shrimp was very juicy and not overcooked at all. The tuna was also very fresh and slightly seared on top.
Juanita decided on the sushi tart ($18), which I think is basically a fancy chirashi don. I didn’t feel like my lunch choice could be beat but I think Juanita’s choice was even better! Between the layers of rice was a layer of avocado and spicy tuna and on top was a mound of aburi salmon, ebi, hotate (scallop), and tobiko. The salmon and other sashimi was all very fresh and the different sauces actually complemented rather than competed with one another. I would have liked the spicy tuna to be a bit spicier but that may have overwhelmed the delicate flavours of the sashimi. This is one of the tastiest things I’ve had at Miku so far and I highly recommend it!
Juanita and I had a great time at Miku catching up and enjoying some delicious food. We both really liked how Miku was different from most Japanese/sushi restaurants around the city and everything was so well presented and fresh tasting. As with my previous visits, service was top notch and we never felt rushed even though we were there during the busy week day lunch hour. Dinner can get a bit expensive so if you are looking to try the same delicious food at a cheaper price point, do try their lunch.
1055 West Hastings Street, Vancouver
Price: $$ (for lunch)