Monday, December 7, 2009

On the Dinner Table

Saber showing off the chopsticks from Sushi Oyama

Two of my closest friends from college get together once in a while to have dinner and catch up. This time we decided to have it at a sushi restaurant on Friday night. The food is the typical sushi fare that you see in other Japanese sushi restaurants, but the location is quite unique.

It is situated inside a huge mansion! The restaurant is called Sushi Oyama and located in Burnaby, B.C. It's just a few blocks away from the Metrotown mall. This is the side view of the mansion. It was the first thing I saw when I parked right behind it. Apparently the parking is free before 6 PM for two hours, but you have to pay after 6 PM... Go figure.

This is the front view of the building. It's quite a nice mansion from the outside, but there have been a lot of tenants at this location which were restaurants as well. Pardon the blurry pictures... I'm not used to taking pictures at night. I planned on taking them during the day, but was busy before dinner time. I was actually the first one to be there, so I took a look around the building and just outside on the veranda. Would be very nice in the summer, but we would've been frozen sitting outside during this time. It reached 0 degree celsius that night, maybe even lower.

More bluriness... but aside from the "OPEN" neon sign, you would think this is a real house that you're stepping into.

The first thing you'll notice when you enter is the chefs yelling, "Irasshaimase!" That cued me that it's either authentic Japanese sushi chefs or they've been trained that way... I think it's the former though. The second thing that you notice, if you weren't in a rush (like my friend who saw us getting seats and quickly followed) is this window with a waterfall inside. Can't really show it on a picture though...

As we sat down I asked my friends, "you don't mind if I brought my date along, right?" They pondered, "date?" as I took Saber out... Ok, so it didn't really happen that way, but let's play along shall we? Both my friends do know that I like anime, figures and do have a blog, but I don't think they expected me to bring a figure along with me to dinner XD

So anyways I seated Saber at the chair...
Hekekek, say Saber, do you need a booster seat? XD

Saber: "Shut up and put me on the table already, you jerk!"
I complied...

This is the part where I warn you that there are food pictures ahead. So I suggest you go out to an sushi restaurant before you proceed, else you'll get hungry :P

So after seeing my little figure and the shirt I was wearing, which was Saber Lily by the way, we finally decided what to order. I'm more used to the all-you-can-eat sushi, so it took me quite a while to decide.

Saber: "Mmmm... Tentacle monster-yaki"

First thing I noticed on the appetizer section... Takoyaki! So I had to get it. It's quite delicious compared to the ones I use to have. It melts in my mouth! I offered to my friends as well with satisfying results. One of the bonito flakes was actually swaying back and forth as if it's waving and saying, "eat me." It's just missing the skewer, lol. So like Saber, we ate it with our chopsticks.

Next up is the sashimi and sushi combo. I'm becoming a fan of sashimi than just the usual sushi rolls or negiri sushi nowadays. The sashimi were cut a bit thick than what I'm used to but they were still good. The yellow one is fried scallop, I believe. A bit of a mess because I try to just put the whole thing in my mouth... I also swiped a yam tempura from my friend's plate since he's got too much, and was offering :P

We had quite a lot of conversations as we ate. A lot of work-related topic, but also computer-related topics. My friend's having a problem with Mac OS 10.5 slowing down everything, but perhaps it was installation problems when he picked "Archive & Install". The other would be the Silverkeeper software from Lacie (an external hard drive maker) that stopped functioning after the 10.5 was installed. Silverkeeper basically backs up older emails and now it can't be accessed anymore. Perhaps the Mail program was not recognizing the older version. So if anyone who knows more about Mac than I do know the answer to this puzzle, please give me a shout, whether on the comments or email. Thanks!

This was the third item I ordered, the deep fried rolls made of fried tuna and salmon in a roll. I ordered it but I couldn't remember the name of it... Why? Well the order didn't really come. I was still hungry, so I really wanted this one to come. I was glad to have it, but Saber can't help but give off a glare... It was only so-so though. I was bit disappointed with this roll.

One of the other topics we talked about was the anime convention that the two of us went to, which was Anime Evolution, back in June. My friend also took pictures of the event and learned quite a bit about the anime fandom in Vancouver in that short period of time.

The topic of Vocaloids, the singing software sensations, also came up. For the uninitiated, it's basically a software that creates a singing voice for a piece of music. I have heard it's quite difficult to program a Vocaloid to sing it the way you want to. I haven't tried myself, but I would know that I can't program MEIKO very well... Ok, I know my friends will be reading, so I'll give an example of a Vocaloid song here, one of my favourites as well.

I was trying to find one of Miku's songs where her voice isn't too electronic and only thought of this one. Anyone have any other suggestions?

A related topic was the Auto-Tune software that a rapper, T-Pain, uses to improve one's vocals. I haven't heard of this program before but I have heard of the results. It makes a voice more electronic, but it's also like a cheat if you're a vocalist, from what I gathered from this conversation. In a way it is similar to Vocaloid, except it's using your own voice instead of a computer-generated voice. Here's a famous example of Auto-Tune:

And hopefully my friend is thinking hard about the blog that he is planning to do. He was one of the writers in our college program, so I think it'd be nice if he can come up with an idea for a blog and do what he does best. :) ...Unlike me, whose writing style is just steamrolling through everything to get it done, lol.

Oh it seems my date brought along her own date....

Shirou: "Saber, why are you here? I made dinner at home."
Saber: "Well if you made sushi more often then I would stay at home!"
(Yes, I know Saber is out of character here... She's not usually a fussy eater ^^;)

So with the awkwardness of the couple fighting at the dinner table, the three of us went on our way... Heheh anyways... Most of the time Saber pretty much stayed by my plate or in my hands when the table was empty. I pretty much planned out the pictures I wanted so I can take them quickly for the storyline ^^; My friend, who is the same age as myself, played around with her a little because he does have quite an eye for figures as well.

In the end the whole night was quite good. The restaurant's bill wasn't too bad either. I may have to consider having a family dinner here one night and also to try out the other rolls.

Good food, good friends and good night! We'll see each other again within not too long of a gap, hopefully. And maybe one of us, besides me, would have a blog too by the time we meet up again ;)

Take a closer look at the screenshots and see the parts highlighted in red... Yes, I planned it, lol. NOT a coincidence :P


  1. You are welcome to take me there next time I'm in Van. Your treat. Thanks!

  2. mm Yummy. All the food seems delicious.

  3. Ever since I saw the image of that muscular saber figure, I can't see her in the same light ever again T-T

    yup, takoyakis are good eating. Used to have em for lunch occasionally back in the good ol' HK. In fact, japanese food in general is good eating... I can't believe I'm saying this, but it's the closest I can get to Chinese food in this depraved neighborhood. I miss my homefoods ;-;

    And in terms of not too 'electric' sounding, Ryo's other stuff like hajikoi does really well, no? I remember hajikoi almost had me fooled at first.

  4. This is bad. Im craving for sushi now!! =(

    But ryo's involved to not only doing vocaloid songs... What do you guys think of the Bakemonogatari ED "君の知らない物語"?

  5. That tentacle monster sushi thingy looks so good right now. Really really craving sushi.

  6. I don't mean to use your comment box to say this, but this is a matter of life and death for my anime-blogging career and my following @ Please don't delete this comment.

    Hey, it's me FaS, from Finally Anime. I had to use a different name because MY WEBHOST SHUT ME DOWN!!!!! They fucking shut me down!!! Apparently I've been taking too much of their bandwidth/processes. This is what they said:

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    Get this, they didn't even let me get my material!!! This is what I sent them:

    You know, I don't get irritated very much, but why would you do such a thing like this without any warning. I've been a loyal customer and you shut down my site without ANY warning?! Like I've worked SO hard on my site and you do me like that. I almost want to create a lawsuit. I am not made of money and simply cannot afford that. That's just Ludacris. 143 a month????? If you would please put my website back on for at least a day or two or even half a week I'll pay extra, I don't care, but you don't seem to understand that I need to let my audience know what's going on...however you just cut me off...I apologize in advance for the flaming email, but you're destroying everything I worked so hard for....all the important anime directories will now have dead links....and worse, important other anime bloggers. You're killing me literally. As someone in need, ID VERY much appreciate if you put it back up for at least 2-3 days. You never even warned me. HOW was I supposed to know this??? Really?? At any rate, I eagerly await your reply.

    Anyways, to make a long story short, if you could make a short post that tells people SUCKS and not to use them and that is shutdown, I'd appreciate it.

    Thanks for being a cool fellow blogger.

  7. @FatB: Sure as long as I can eat sushi! Just let me borrow some money from you and I'll treat ya :D

    @phossil: They just don't seem it, they ARE! XD

    @Ningyo: LoL you're too easily discouraged by images. You need to train your mind young Padawan!

    Wow really? I would think Chinese food would be more common than Japanese food. And thanks for the suggestion, I'll have to take a look at that one. Or I may even know it just don't know the title...

    @zh3us: I did warn you, lol. Time for a sushi run methinks. I still haven't seen Bakemonogatari yet >.>

    @Yi: It's ok. Tentacle monsters aren't on the endangered species yet. Go for it! XD

    @finalanimestop: It's interesting that when I talk about my college buddies on my blog, I get an unrelated comment ^^; Anyhow... from the looks of, the site seems to be somewhat in order. Good thing they got the site back up for you at least. Make sure you back up this time and I'll have to remember to do that for mine as well. Good luck friend :)

  8. Uwah... I wouldn't dare on placing my figures (esp. Yoko) at public places... They would gave me a funny "look".

  9. @bd77: I've been more open about taking them out in public now. For taking photos you tend to focus on the figure more than what's outside the shooting area. So I don't even see them giving me looks XD

  10. Seriously, what's up with the off topic posts? Maybe it's a sign that you shouldn't be writing about me=P

    In an area where sushi places pop up everywhere, this place is pretty good. I would definitely go back.

    As for you pulling out a figurine, I'm not too surprised. As I said in the restaurant, I'm more surprised you didn't start doing it earlier and more often and take photos a la the travelocity gnome.

    photos looks good, btw=)

  11. The lovely Saber and Takoyaki! =D

    I like your last photo, Saber is cranky because of sushi addiction lol

  12. TAKO YAKI! My favorite food! XD
    Everytime i see sushi, one bad memory will come to my mind. There was once, my friends and i went for sushi buffet to celebrate my birthday. We ate till we almost vomit and one of the waiters told us that we still had about 50 plus serving on the order list. =X

  13. @Anonymous aka EW: Hahaha I'll have to stop mixing real life into this XD

    But ya, it was a good restaurant, but I'll have to remember to come in early because it got busy real fast! Yeah the figure photos don't happen too often; only when I remember to bring a figure and a camera ^^;

    @Yamada: Yep, date with Saber :P

    @B-Mecha: Saber is quite mean when she's on a sushi binge XD

    @Chappy: Yay! More takoyaki fans ^.^ Wow interesting story on a sushi buffet ^^;;; Good thing it was a buffet, I can't imagine how much it would've cost you guys. ^^;

  14. ARGH! I didn't heed your warning about eating before looking at the food pictures! Now I'm hungry!

    Anyways, great place! Is it newly opened? I gotta try it out sometime when I go to Burnaby!

  15. I'm falling behind on blogroll X( Building the home server took a chunk of my time, that and the Sasara contest too. Nice outing with Saber chan though! Sushi, yum yum.

  16. @pyauki: Ahaha go get some sushi from T&T ^.^ I think it's newly opened since the sign says "Grand Opening", but that sign's been on since they took pictures for Google Street View ^^;;;

    @Wolfheinrich: Yup great sushi indeed! Sounds really busy over there... Good that you got a buyer/winner for the Sasara contest :) I'm gonna try to catch up on my Christmas days off.

  17. O__O So BRS is really Miku?!? WTF?!? Gotta be kidding. Anyways, I love her character design, I hate her voice to the teeth. It's too annoying, luckily her figures don't sing. XD

    Those are some lovely sushi...makes me want to get some now.

  18. @Tommy: Well it's a strange thing about BRS. I mean the singer is Miku, but a lot of people don't believe it really is her. I suppose it's some kind of alter ego. There is that musical figure made by SEGA, right? XD

  19. @Lightning Sabre: I'll shoot myself if I got one of those...

    that, or take out the battery. XD

  20. @Tommy: LOL you really don't like her singing, eh? XD Well as long as you don't wind her up then nothing will come out :P