G is for Genki: The Japanese word “genki” comes from characters and its meaning will depend on the character combination and context. “Genki “ is often used to describe health, energy, excitement or spirit. Japanese people usually say “O genki desu ka?” (English translate: How are you?), with a reply of “Genki desu” (English translate: I am well/fine).
Sushi Bar Genki recently had its grand opening on the weekend – 27th and 28th of July, with the Chef Shozo Ikeda – known for opening Genki Roll in David Jones and the old Genki (which is now Wasai). I happened to walk past it as I parked my car across the road. With my hawk eyes, I immediately spotted this new exterior with colourful menus on the window. Unfortunately I did not have time to try it out but noted that there was a Mon – Thurs special where all sushi plates on the train were $2.90. So I made a mental note to come back within the week.
Tuesday rolled around and I made my way there with a few friends for lunch – noting that since it is a train, we should be able to have a good lunch within 1 hour.
Please note the following review is my honest opinion – I comment on my personal experience there and I am blunt although I do encourage everyone to give every place a go and give them feedback for improvements!!
As we came in, we were given the only available booth that was right at the end of the train – against some dividers that we could not see over.
A male waiter told us that only the plates on the train were $2.90 and if we were to order anything else (through the modern ipad ordering mechanism) that it would be charged at full price. Firstly, I didn’t realise that as I didn’t read the poster closely enough – I assumed it was like Sushi Train where you just order anything you like and it is $3. If I was marketing this place, I would definitely open up my doors to $3 everything as this is the most CRUCIAL time to win your customers support as they will be severely comparing this sushi bar to the ever popular Sushi Train. However, I am not marketing just eating haha!
Anyways…THEN comes along another lady who tells us everything is $2.90 – which got us excited again. But then the man sees us discussing with this lady and he comes along and reconfirms it is not, and the poor lady got a bit flustered. They should really debrief their waiters..oh well, so we started checking out the train!
As you can see, we were at the end of the train where the chefs don’t put any new plates. Everything that came to us was the ones that people did not want! All the good plates were snapped up and we expressed our concerns to the waiter, who just said ‘Yes I understand’ but did not offer any alternatives – for example, just order us a few plates for $2.90 and we would be happy. We just wanted some good sushi!!!!! Then my boyfriend arrived and he had spied a booth that was up the front- so we quickly moved up there.
Oops only took one side of the menu!
We each took an Aburi Salmon plate each – this was delicious. We noted that they only put two pieces of Aburi salmon as opposed to the 3 pieces that were shown in the normal priced menu ($4.50 blue plate) – but it was delicious so that was fine.
The tempura roll was a bit dry and didn’t have much flavour unfortunately – it was crying out for some Kewpie mayo!!
This is a soft shell crab roll. It was okay..but for some reason, the rice was weird. It was super soft and almost mooshy. The roe on the outside that was also mooshy – it didn’t really ‘pop’ if you know what I mean. @_@
This was Fishcake Tempura – it was tasty and tasted like deep fried fish balls (the type you use for steamboat).
My boyfriend chose this but I am not a big fan of colored rice so I didn’t try it. It is a healthier option! 🙂 Points for creativity!
The modern ordering system – you select what you want and press order!
They have mini bowls of udon and beef I think, but we didn’t try them.
We also had a salmon ship, karage chicken, a lobster potato ship and flavoured lotus.
We arrived at 1:10pm and my friends had to go back to work so they left around 1:45pm and unfortunately they were still hungry *feels bad for inviting them here*. My boyfriend and I stayed behind an extra 10 minutes to wait for his Aburi salmon – which he ordered 10-15 minutes before. Our experience was a matter of waiting and waiting for some appetizing sushi to come around – despite us moving up, there was still lots of blank black train and no colourful pretty sushi to eat.
The menu looks very promising with a lot of creativity. I feel disappointed that the service could not live up to its promises.
It might be because they are still finding their feet – so I plan on going back in a month or two to try out their normal menu and to see if their services have improved. Do give it a go and let me know what you think 🙂
Overall, we grade it a C- for our lunch experience. We hope to see improvements and be more compassionate towards your paying customers – especially if they are sitting in an area where no fresh plates are placed. That was what made me sad!
…the Alphabet of Food …