Torafuku Finding Nemo

Torafuku Vancouver

Torafuku restaurant exterior

A while ago Travelzoo had another awesome dining deal and this time it was for the restaurant Torafuku in Chinatown.  Torafuku is a modern Japanese eatery and the owner/executive chef Clement Chan was a contestant on Top Chef Canada.  So I was really glad this deal appeared and again Fannypack was my eating partner.  For $39 we got to pick any two “snacks”, two share plates, and a dessert.

So I’m gonna say it now…I wasn’t impressed with the dishes…at all.  Read on to see why.

Torafuku Rye So Messy chicken wings

For our first “Snack” choice, we both decided on the Rye So Messy Chicken Wings ($12).  Apparently this dish has won the “2015 Chicken Fight Best Dish” award.  The menu description was “rye and gochujang marinate, mango glaze, ramen crumble, kfc sauce”.  Not sure what kfc sauce was.

This was easily the best dish of the night, but that’s not saying a lot.  Out of all the dishes tonight this had the most flavor.  The chicken wings were seasoned through and the coating was crispy.  It was slightly spicy also.  However the combination of flavors just seemed confusing to me and nothing in the description really stood out.

Esthetically though it just wasn’t pleasing at all.  It just looked like a pile of stuff in a bowl, much like how I would pile up my bowl of plain rice at home with accompaniments.

Torafuku Vancouver - Calamari

The Calamari 2.0 ($12) was my choice.  The combination of crispy squid, brussel sprouts, local mushrooms, compressed apples, nero aioli, angry tiger sauce sounded amazing.

Well, there was way too much tasteless batter on the small, thin calamari pieces.  The best part were the brussel sprouts.  And the mushrooms.  This dish however was the most well-presented.

Fannypack went rogue though and wanted to get an additional half order of the Kickass Rice 3.0 roll (full $12; half $7).  This was a sushi roll of torched pork belly, furikake, cucumber, avocado, red shiso, miso mayo, and Torafuku spicy sauce.

As you can see in the picture, it was mostly made up of cucumber slivers.  There’s a lot going on on the plate but not a lot in my mouth =(

Torafuku - Finding Nemo

On to the “Sharing Plates”.  Fannypack picked Finding Nemo ($16).  It had handmade linguine, fresh sea urchin, clams, shiso sun chokes, grape tomatoes, velouté.

Now I know this whole plating-half-a-plate thing is a ‘thing’, but at Torafuku it just looked awkward, like they forgot to plate the other half.  We both agreed that maybe it would’ve been better to just use a smaller plate.

Torafuku - Don't Be So Cheeky

My choice was Don’t Be So Cheeky ($18) – Sake marinated halibut cheeks, trumpet mushrooms, market veggies, sour apple and cucumber nage.

The cheeks were tender but came lukewarm.  I felt the sour apple nage didn’t really goes with the savory flavor of the fish as the nage was too acidic.

Torafuku desserts

Thing turned around a bit for dessert though.  Although we were only supposed to pick one dessert, that actually only applied to the $8 options.  For the $6 options we got to pick two, so we got the only two $6 choices- The Bullwinkle Show the Milk & Cookie.

The Bullwinkle Show was dark chocolate mousse topped with passion fruit foam, fresh fruit, and hazelnut chocolate wafer.  The fruity tartness of the foam went very well with the dark chocolate mousse, so much as overpowering the mousse, which was good for me since I’m not a fan of chocolate mousse desserts.

I really enjoyed the Milk & Cookie, a vanilla panna cotta with yuzu gelée, raspberry coulis, almond and black sesame shortbread.  I just LOVE panna cottas.  It was creamy and lightly sweetened.  Fannypack didn’t like it as much though…saying it tasted like cough syrup or perfumy to her.

So…I’m glad we got a voucher for this meal…as…I really didn’t think it was all that great..

Torafuku Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Review Date
What Was Reviewed
Torafuku Restaurant
Author Rating

Comment? Question? I'd love to hear from you!