WASABI ON BROADWAY
Neighbourhood: West Broadway
Address: 588 Broadway
Wasabi on Broadway opened more than 20 years ago in a heritage home on tree-lined west Broadway, one of the first-wave Japanese restaurants serving sushi on the prairies. Today, founding partners and husband-wife duo Cho and Tracy Venevongsa run two locations and two additional restaurant brands— Chosabi (fast casual sushi burritos) and Cho Ichi Ramen—under the umbrella Wasabi Group. Yet Wasabi OG continues to charm.
Artistic presentations and ample cuts of fresh buttery seafood characterize a culinary experience that has rightly earned staying power. In fact, stellar ingredients and playful creativity is exactly what fans of this fusion pioneer expect.
Wasabi’s menu lets you dine in a variety of satisfying ways. Cold appetizers hint at the kitchen’s whimsy. A fashionable twist on a Mexican favourite, tuna nachos delight. The precisely plated row of wonton nachos are topped with raw tuna, avocado and a piquant jalapeño slice. Tobiko pops on the tongue with each bite.
Hot dishes are equally stunning. Mango tango prawns, a Wasabi specialty from the start, shouldn’t be missed. Tempura fried prawns, coated with creamy chile sauce are accented with sweet mango cubes and mixed greens in a fried wonton bowl. Plump seared scallops sit pretty on spinach sautéed and covered in yuzu butter (think lemon beurre blanc) sauce. Both dishes exemplify the kitchen’s mastery of flavour and balance.
For many, sashimi and sushi rolls define the stunning menu. There are dozens to choose from, featuring a dizzying number of luxurious ingredients. East coast lobster meets west coast salmon in a soy sheet roll mixed with mango and avocado. The volcano roll, consisting of warm saucy scallops and calamari flowing down a stacked eel roll, makes a spicy statement.
While fish and seafood are prominent, vegetables play an exciting role too. Roasted beets star in a red velvet roll, tempura yam and asparagus join in ‘The Rising Sun’ and a mushroom medley kissed by soy balsamic vinaigrette brims with umami.
A new patio adds panache to a supreme setting that has always thrived on a fresh outlook.