To Groupon or not to Groupon? I’m hesitant to buy online deals. However, I saw some positive diner reviews on Urbanspoon for a new Japanese restaurant, Gohan Sushi Lounge. So when I saw a deal for Gohan on Groupon, I figured, why not?
First off, I want to give props to our server, Melissa. She was super sweet and did her job well. She also doesn’t annoy easily, as we could see from the high maintenance customers sitting next to us. The couple also had a Groupon. After Melissa brought them tea and a beer, the customer requested a water, with lemon but no ice. Two minutes later, the customer wanted a fork, which she used to flatten each piece of sushi before eating it. Three minutes later, she wanted a knife to cut into her maki rolls.
Back to the food. As it was Thursday, appetizers were half price. L and I decided to ordered a bunch of dishes to get a sense of what Gohan had to offer. L raved about the Motoyaki ($10). Both the scallop and shrimp were plump and well seared. Nestled between the seafood was a tangy seaweed salad doused in a creamy sauce.
I love deep fried food. L not so much. So I devoured most of the Sushi Pizza ($10). The rice patty was crispy on the outside like a hash brown. The rice inside the patty remained fluffy, each grain still held its integrity. The mixture of salmon, avocado, masago and mayonnaise was tangy and rich. The deep-fried carrot strands that garnished the top of the pizza was sweet.
Our third appetizer was the Ahi Tuna and Scallop Carpaccio ($16.00). I thought the red tuna was fine and the avocado a tad unripe. However, the scallop was dynamite. Large, firm and sweet, the freshness of the scallop was unsurpassed.
L and I each ordered Tonkatsu Ramen ($15.00). The sea salt based pork was creamy and the flavour didn’t over power the more subtle ingredients, like the bamboo shoots, sprouts, fish cake and seaweed. The roasted pork slices were generous in size with a nice fat to lean meat ratio. I would have preferred if the ramen was a tad firmer, but that’s just my preference. The half slice of egg was phenomenal. The texture of the egg yolk was soft and melded so well with all the flavours of this dish. Next time, I’m going to ask if I can pay for an extra egg because it was that good.
We ordered the Dynamite Roll ($8.00) which was average in size, presentation and taste. Next time, I would opt for the Spider Roll ($15.00), which was double the size and looked like it was overflowing with deep-fried crab.
Overall, L and I really enjoyed the food. We plan to go again and try a few more dishes. Fried Oysters ($12.00), Seafood Yakiudon ($20.00), a sushi platter, and of course, more scallops. I made L buy a Groupon, so that we could try more items than we would normally order. Tee-hee. Fei Po gives Gohan Sushi Lounge two fat thumbs up. I hope the quality and service continues, so that Gohan becomes a regular stop for us (even without a coupon).