It was one tough decision to make on choosing where to go for my first omakase experience. After one month of comparing and discussing among my friends, we finally decided to try Sushi Bar Maumi. The omakase features 11 pieces of nigiri for $75, which the price is relatively affordable compared to other omakase in Vancouver. Another reason to pick Sushi Bar Maumi is that it focuses on nigiri, instead of Japanese dishes (similar to Kaiseki). We made our reservation almost 3 weeks in advance, and we got the last few seats available. Before making the reservation online, make sure to read their cancellation policy!
Sushi Bar Maumi has a limited seating capacity of 10 adults, and walk-ins are not allowed. Only two services are available every evening, and they do not open on Sundays. Therefore, a 100% deposit is requested during the reservation process, which is to prevent any last-minute cancellations or latecomers.
There are only 10 seats in the restaurant, facing the bar table. Guests can watch Chef Maumi to make nigiri throughout the night. On the table, there is simple table setting with a menu to follow along and take home if you like. The dinner starts at 6pm sharp, and Chef Maumi did a brief introduction on the omakase and the sauces he uses on the nigiri.
Here is a brief description of the house made sauces:
- Nikiri Shoyu (strong) – bonito flakes, dried kelp, soy sauce, mirin, and sake
- Irizake – sake, umeboshi (pickled plum), bonito flakes, and kelp
- Nikiri Shoyu (regular)
- Tsume – BBQ conger head, sake, soy sauce, sugar, and bonito flakes
- Mojio – hondawara, kelp, and sea salt
The nigiri is prepared in front of us and is served piece by piece.
I was surprised to see Spot Prawn on the menu because they are no longer in season. As expected, the spot prawn texture is mushy.
Ika is one of my favourite nigiri because of the chewy texture. I love the addition of the housemade sauce on this piece. Surume Ika is probably one of my favourite piece in this omakase.
Bafun Uni tastes creamy and fresh, and this changes my impression of uni.
I am usually a big fan of Hon Maguro Zuke (Bluefin Tuna), but the marinated soy sauce covers the freshness and its original flavor. It is too salty to my liking.
I am usually not a fan of Saba because it is often fishy. And this piece was no exception. It has a soft texture as well. My friends were quite disappointed on this piece, as they are huge saba fans.
Anago is a limited item, and I love the use of the housemade sauce, Tsume. The eel is grilled perfectly.
Additional nirigi sushi can be ordered after the omakese piece has been served. I chose two additional pieces to try: Uchiwahagi (unicorn leatherjacket) and Tamago (egg omelette). I chose the fish solely based on its cool name, but I didn’t like the soft texture.
I highly recommend to order the Tamago at the end. The flavor is rich, and I love how the taste of seafood and a touch of sweetness is lingering in my mouth.
Being my first ever Omakase experience, it was not bad, but also not the best. I did have a high expectation, especially on the freshness and choice of fish that the restaurant offers. I heard many good things about Sushi Bar Maumi from my friends, but I don’t think it is worth the $75. The value of the 11-piece nigiri may be worth the price, but I think the overall freshness from the seafood is what makes the experience expensive. Unfortunately, Sushi Bar Maumi does not quite meet my expectation.
Taste : 3/5 • Service: 4.5/5 • Ambiance: 4/5 • Quality-Price: 3.5/5