Kaizen is considered one of Montreal’s best sushi restaurants. Located on the edge of Westmount and Downtown, this posh restaurant with an unassuming exterior houses a warm, traditional Japanese interior. Kaizen offers a lengthy wine list and several sake options, having been awarded a Consumer’s Choice award in 2007 for their alcohol selection. Kaizen also offers a reduced price meal after 9pm which I may sample on my next visit.
Kaizen offers an array of sushi choices and cooked meats with Bio-friendly options available on almost every menu. I began the meal with miso soup. The soup had a warm, hearty broth, containing large pieces of properly-cooked tofu, seaweed, and some oriental mushrooms. The first roll to arrive served as an appetizer: A fried maki called New Wave. This roll contained a variety of fish and vegetables and was topped with fried vermicelli drizzled with soya sauce. It was delightfully lightly breaded, contained appropriately mushy white rice, sported well cooked shrimp and egg whose textures offset the crispy outside quite well, and some mellow flavours.
The main course began with salmon sashimi, unagi nigiri and tuna nigiri. The salmon was cut in thick pieces and was both fresh and tasty. The tuna truly impressed me: It was beautifully cut and tasted extremely fresh, a rarity which was worth savouring. The eel was meaty but otherwise standard, fairly fresh with a light flavouring of terriyaki. The spicy salmon roll had a light, lingering spiciness that left a lovely after-taste, especially when combined with the sesame seed-laden rice. The kamikaze roll was made with clean white rice and contained some salmon, avocado and a bit of lightly fried tempura. Some wasabi was necessary to provide flavour to the kamikaze roll, but thereafter was very tasty. The rainbow roll was delicious: The spicy tuna core contained that same delicious red tuna I had some to expect, combined with salmon or whitefish on top to ensure each mouthful contained a medley of flavourful, fresh fish. The Lambas roll was better than its namesake Elvish travelling bread; the lobster roll melted in your mouth! The rice-paper wrapping was superior to seaweed, providing a non-chewy shell without an overpowering taste. Worth every bite.
Kaizen is a pricey restaurant that offers top quality sushi, in terms of cut and flavour. For those with a developed sushi palette it is well worth the visit, especially on a special occasion.
Visited: January 16, 2013
Restaurant Web Site: https://www.70sushi.com/site/home.asp