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article imageOp-Ed: Chicken teriyaki, most sushi score big at Toronto's Cafësta Special

By KJ Mullins     Apr 18, 2010 in Food
Toronto - Cafësta is a buffet Japanese restaurant next to the Pacific Mall in Toronto. The Sunday lunch menu offers diners plenty of choices at a reasonable price.
Unlike many Toronto all-you-can-eat Japanese buffets, there are no slips of paper on the table for diners to order their meals; instead a wait staff quickly comes to the table taking your order. There is not one set server per table at Cafësta which takes some getting used to. Each server is polite and knowledgeable about the cuisine they serve. If they are unsure of an answer concerning a food allergy they rush away to discuss it with the chef and return with a quick answer and suggestions.
We went to a Sunday lunch service just 40 minutes before the shift was to end. During the next forty minutes we were treated with respect and prompt service. The first server Kevin had a hot pot of green tea at our table within seconds of our sitting down.
Cafësta Japanese Cuisine
Cafësta Japanese Cuisine
We tasted the yam tempura, miso soup, house salad, chicken skewers, chicken teriki, tuna sushi, ebi sushi and an avocado roll.
The yam tempura was light and crispy. A perfect start to lunch.
The miso soup was, in my son's words, "great," one of the best he had tasted.
Miso soup at Cafësta
Miso soup at Cafësta
The house salad was lacking variety. The crisp iceberg lettuce had a few shreds of carrot and a large portion of salad dressing. Had the homemade dressing been sparser it wouldn't have overpowered the lettuce.
The chicken skewers were perfectly cooked, tender and juicy with just the right blend of sauce.
Chicken skewers at  Cafësta
Chicken skewers at Cafësta
The chicken teriyaki was one of the best I have tasted in Toronto. The chef left the skin on for a crunchy texture that added flavor. Manager Vince Lee agreed that the skin added to the dish.
The sushi was two hits and a miss. The ebi was in my son's words was great as was the tuna sushi, which he generally isn't a fan of. The avocado roll was not as well liked.
Avocado roll at  Cafësta
Avocado roll at Cafësta
"The roll has its ups and downs. Its texture and flavor was good, however it had a strong smell and things that I believe were egg that threw me off a bit," said Shane Mullins.
The ice cream offerings for dessert were light and creamy. Cafësta also makes all of their puddings from scratch.
Cafësta s manager Vince Lee was happy to discuss ingredients. He was also very hands on happily ser...
Cafësta's manager Vince Lee was happy to discuss ingredients. He was also very hands on happily serving diners along with his very capable wait staff.
The sushi bar had three sushi chefs on hand to turn out a large assortment. When asked about the red snapper and if it was the real deal Manager Lee assured us that it was and was open about the crab being imitation crab.
Lee has been at Cafësta for two months. The location has been at 688 Silver Star Blvd. for five years but it had been called Wabashi in the past. The name change came when another buffet was opened by the chain that features both Chinese and Japanese food. Cafësta specializes in Japanese only.
"We try to do the real thing for the customer."
Cafësta was full when we arrived with families. The staff was friendly to everyone and the kids we heard sounded very happy.
Cafësta Japanese Cuisine
Cafësta Japanese Cuisine
The cost of the lunch buffet was $12.99.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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