Edmontonians love their Japanese food. So much so that I’ve lost count of just how many Japanese restaurants there are in our city (hint: it’s a lot). We’ve got a lot of options to satisfy our Japanese cravings and adding to that list of options is the new Takami Sushi in Allendale, at 10430 61 Avenue (just off Calgary Trail).
Takami Sushi is located in a business park, in a very clean, modern space that’s unexpectedly large, with two sort of distinct dining areas. There’s a more spacious open dining room as well as a narrower, more private style dining area. As with most Japanese restaurants, chefs are out front and centre, expertly cutting and preparing sashimi and sushi dishes. You can also access the restaurant from two sides/two doors – one that is closer to the private dining space and the other closer to the round table, open dining room.
We were invited to try Takami as part of their soft opening earlier this month. The restaurant specializes in premium sashimi shipped fresh weekly from Japan. They get their weekly shipments on Thursdays, so Thursdays through the weekend are the best times to go – for the best variety of fish including Renkodai sea bream and blue fin tuna. They also offer Omakase Sashimi (essentially “leave it up to the chef” to decide what you get).
Takami’s menu is smaller (at least right now) as their priority is on the fresh fish. There are a handful of appetizers, a few entrees, and a few rolls, and then an assortment of nigiri, sashimi and chef specials. They definitely do their specialty – fresh fish – really, really well.
Our group tried the Beef Tataki ($15) with house-made ‘Takami’ ponzu sauce. It was definitely one of the better beef tatakis I’ve had in the city – great sear, optimal thin slice, a bed of onions and seaweed, and delicious ponzu sauce.
Then we shared the Deluxe Assorted Sashimi ($32) which came with 18 pieces of raw fish including salmon, yellowtail, prawns, surf clam, and octopus. The dish is beautiful – just a really stunning presentation with dry ice and everything. It was almost too beautiful to eat! (almost). At $32 for 18 fresh and tasty pieces, we felt it was a great price (working out to just under $2 per piece).
We tried a few of their rolls as well – including their Rainbow Rolls (assorted sashimi with avocado and crabmeat – $15), TNT Rolls (avocado, crabmeat, shrimp tempura, garlic sauce, unagi sauce, hot sauce, sesame, and green onion – $17), Dynamite Rolls (chop chop scallop, avocado, cucumber, shrimp tempura, hot sauce – $15) and Fire Sake Rolls (shrimp tempura, cucumber, torched salmon, hot sauce, unagi sauce, mayo, crispy yam, tempura flake, green onion – $15).
Their Fire Sake Rolls are a Takami specialty. I loved the texture of the crispy yam tempura flakes combined with the flavours of the torched salmon and sauces. The fish in the Rainbow Rolls in particular tasted – as with the Deluxe Assorted Sashimi – very fresh. We enjoyed all of the rolls. Also worth noting – Takami makes their own wasabi in-house. I keep using the word fresh, but that’s the best way to describe a lot of the dishes and the wasabi – it tasted fresh.
Takami Sushi is also open for lunch (if you go in March, your meal will be 10% off!) I haven’t tried their lunch menu yet but it sounds like a winner by my friend Let’s Om Nom’s review.
That night, we were celebrating the engagement of my friend Little Miss Andrea and her fiancé Gordon. Takami was a great setting for a celebration! Our service was attentive and prompt, and I can’t say enough about the beautiful presentation and fresh flavours.
If you love raw fish, Takami is a must. If you prefer more variety of rolls or cooked dishes and other appetizers, it might not be the best option for you, though certainly worth a visit (with a fish fanatic) to try for yourself.
So have you been to Takami Sushi?! What did you think?
Disclaimer: I will always provide my 100% honest opinion on this blog. Takami invited me to try their restaurant. My dinner was complimentary. This has no impact on the opinions stated in this post. (I wouldn’t say I liked it if I didn’t!)