There's definitely an over-abundance of sushi restaurants in Montreal, ranging from the very bad to the very posh, but in comparison, the Japanese population here is teeny tiny. So, as you can imagine, actual Japanese-owned and run restaurants are relatively few as well. That isn't to say that non-Japanese operated sushi restaurants are bad, per se - in fact, some of the most popular Japanese restaurants in Montreal aren't run by Japanese people. But sometimes, you just want some no-frills, authentic Japanese cuisine. And where can you go for that? Why, Furusato, of course.
(Note: Reservations highly suggested.)
Accessibility - Grade: A-
Furusato is located literally a block away from Place-des-Arts metro, on de Bleury street. It's also upwards of a five minute walk from McGill University.
Service - Grade: B+
I've yet to receive bad service from Japanese-run restaurants, and Furusato is no exception. The waitresses were all very nice and polite. Really, the only complaint people might have is that the food takes a while to come out, especially the sushi, but hey, you can't rush art. The waiting time for sushi at Sushi Yasu, another Japanese-run establishment that I visit frequently, is also quite long. But in the end, it's all worth it.
Food - Grade: B+
Furusato has a humble menu, serving mainly some izakaya-style dishes that go well with sake or beer, some personal-sized shabu shabu and some of the freshest sushi in town. Now, if you're looking for a sushi restaurant that serves up all the fancy fusion rolls, then look elsewhere. If you're looking for solid, no-frills nigiri and sashimi, then look no further.
|Sushi and Sashimi plate|
While the nigiri and sashimi were great, I thought their rolls were kind of average. They do tend to pack a lot of rice in their rolls, so much that they seem to be bursting at the seams. Their rolls will often be misshapen and BIG, made with seemingly less finesse than the nigiri. The seaweed is fresh, though, seeing as how it's very easy to bite through it. I did find the rice to be a little too vinegared for my taste, and oddly enough, their soy sauce is more salty than the soy sauce you'd normally find in Japanese restaurants.
Price - $$$
Uh. Yeah. This place is actually pretty pricey, but I've yet to find a good Japanese restaurant that isn't expensive, so there's that. The sushi and sashimi combo is $27 before tax, the chawan mushi $7 and the grilled calamari around $10. So our final bill came up to around $57 after tax and tip. Probably not a place students can visit frequently.
Final Grade: B+
Furusato follows tradition, and if you've ever visited Japan, then you'll know that traditional sushi in Japan consists mainly of nigiri, which is what Furusato is good for. Their maki really aren't that interesting, but the freshness and skilled cuts of their fish in the nigiri and sashimi more than makes up for that.
2137 Rue de Bleury,