Ekali’s favourite Sushi spots in Vancouver
The Operatives have a habit of bringing out next-gen talent and genre-benders, and their latest tour with Vancouver’s EKALI is no different.
Ekali is the solo project of Nathan Shaw, who plays bass in indie-rock band, Said The Whale when he isn’t holed up in a bedroom or tour bus making beats.
This kid is already making waves with what he calls ‘R&Bae’ creations, which we can assume falls somewhere between bass heavy club tunes and smooth R&B vibes. Ekali has been picked up by Red Bull Music Academy and has toured the world; and, just casually, has even featured on Drake’s latest album – his production was used on ‘Preach’. 850,000+ plays on one remix is something worth yelling about too hey?
Now whilst we wait for him to bring his downcast soundscapes and hip-hop influence down to our fair shores, we caught up with Ekali for a guide to his hometown of Vancouver. Shaw takes us through his favourite haunts to get a good slice of god’s nectar, aka sushi.
If you love waiting in line for an hour to enjoy amazing sushi & Japanese, this is the place for you. It’s a small joint run by a few Japanese chefs and their wives. There is never NOT a wait-list, but you can go and have a drink elsewhere while you wait.
Recommend: Baked Miso Glazed Eggplant; slightly crispy, slightly chewy, slightly salty, slightly sweet. Sort of healthy, but not really. Super cheap.
4. Bistro Sakana
This is a Japanese spot in Yaletown with a more modern (and expensive) approach to Sushi. The Nigiri comes seared with fancy mini limes & sauce on top. I feel like a pretentious ass eating here but it’s really damn good.
Recommend: Mango roll; very delicately dipped in soy sauce.
3. Bluewater Cafe
This is the place where rich inheritance kids, rappers, and members of the Vancouver Canucks go to eat. It is quite damn expensive, but the seafood is incredibly good. They have a main kitchen which deals in Seafood entrees and the like, and then a Sushi bar off to the side which deals in all things raw fish.
Recommend: Aka Maguro Sashimi; Melts in your mouth. Costs you a small fortune.
Located on davie street just off of Granville, this is one of those gems not many people know about in Vancouver. The restaurant itself seats about 15 people, but is hardly super busy. Amazing bento boxes, nice fresh fish, good selection of specialty rolls, and all at a very low price. I took High Klassified, Tsuruda & Huxley Anne here once and they all agreed it was the best sushi they ever had.
Recommend: ANY of the specialty rolls. Seriously.
I think this may be a controversial opinion among Vancouverites, as all people from Vancouver think they know what the penultimate sushi restaurant is… but Shuraku is without a shred of doubt in my mind the best traditional sushi spot in Vancouver.
Having spent time in Japan, & at the fish markets eating Sashimi fresh out of the ocean, I can honestly say the fish at this place is almost just as good. If what you want is the freshest possible raw fish on rice, this is the place I would go to. Sometimes when I eat here I find myself in disbelief tasting the sashimi as it’s just so damn good. Also, their Shiso Leaf game is on 100, which is always overlooked in Vancouver.
Recommend: Chef’s Choice 10 PC Sashimi, Deluxe Nigiri Assortment. Thank me later.
Grab some Sashimi with Ekali when he comes to town in March, dates below:
EKALI AUSTRALIA/NZ TOUR DATES
FRI MAR 4- SYDNEY, CHINESE LAUNDRY
SAT MAR 5 – BRISBANE, TBC CLUB
SUN MAR 6 – MELBOURNE, DR MORSE [Free Show]
THU MAR 10 – WELLINGTON, VALHALLA
FRI MAR 11 – AUCKLAND, 1885
SAT MAR 12 – PERTH, FLYRITE
Words by Tom Hutchins