Hi Genki @ Nikkei Home

by Ed Lau on January 6, 2010

Hi Genki, Vancouver, Fujiya

I’ve eaten in a lot of strange and interesting places. I’ve eaten in restaurants that are more than ten times older than me. I’ve eaten things that can could possibly kill me…and yes, the Dot Com Pho crew and I once ate out of toilets in a weird but strangely delicious restaurant in Taipei. Well, now you can add senior’s home to that list.

No, you read that right. Hi Genki is a Japanese restaurant located in the “lobby” of an old folks home or extended care facility. I had no idea that this sort of place existed so you can imagine my surprise when I rolled up to a place that houses a lot of seniors and wondering where the restaurant was. I even brought my full DSLR kit to take pictures as low light performance on most point-and-shoots is horrible and most restaurants regardless of what they serve have dim mood lighting. Instead, I was greeted by the florescent flicker and wondered exactly what my former co-workers had gotten me into for our reunion dinner.

It was a little unsettling since I usually associate food in a hospital setting as being…mass manufactured and terrible so I tweeted out asking if anyone has ever eaten at Hi Genki before and the unanimously positive reactions put my mind at ease. People raved about the simple, no frills Japanese homecooking available at reasonable prices.

Hi Genki, Vancouver, Fujiya

As such, nothing that we had that night was particularly interesting but everything tasted like a friend’s Japanese grandmother had cooked it for us. My nabeyaki udon lacked some of the extras that I might get at a bigger restaurant but the flavors were all there, the poultry and seafood tasted fresh and the rustic preparation was perfect. Hi Genki is owned by the Fujiya chain of Japanese markets so the ingredents are of good quality. My only real complaint is that they gave me a flat metal spoon rather than an Asian soup spoon which made it significantly more difficult to eat my noodles.

Hi Genki, Vancouver, Fujiya

Hi Genki, Vancouver, Fujiya

My friends all said about the same things about their meals. Delicious and satisfying.

Hi Genki, Vancouver, Fujiya

We were all rather intrigued by the deep fried ice cream but only one of us actually ordered it. I was rather full so I passed but I’ll probably go back to try one. This is ice cream that is covered in what appear to be crushed corn flakes and briefly deep fried. I’ve eaten all kinds of unconventional fried foods like bananas or even milk but ice cream sort of blows my mind as…well, it melts. As you can see, it does stay intact throughout the process. Very interesting, indeed.

So if you’re looking for a nice, homestyle Japanese meal, give Hi Genki a try…and let me know if you order that ice cream tempura.

Hi Genki on Urbanspoon

in Food and Fine Dining,Photography

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Kennymatic January 6, 2010 at 10:34 am

I literally live down the hill from this place and I have to say it is easily my favorite place to go for Japanese (read not sushi). They always have a wide variety of special menu items that you typically don’t find at other restaurants, one of my favorites is the spicy karaage don. Their idea of karaage is quite different from the typical “Japanese” restaurant.

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