Vancouver is known to the world for its array of high-quality and inexpensive sushi restaurants. Some of the most authentic eateries can be found right here in Richmond. Case in point: Toku Japanese Restaurant, located at Lansdowne Centre mall. Founded in 2016, Toku is a full-service establishment serving an array of Japanese specialties and is run by family business partners Jimmy Hon and Hiroshi Esaki who focus on providing fine-dining service in a family-friendly environment. “(Toku) is a family restaurant and I have built many relationships with my customers. It is the best feeling when I serve customers from all ranges of life and see them leave the restaurant with a full belly,” explains Hon.
The family-orientation extends to the menu as well. “Every item on our menu, from appetizers to Robatas to cooked dishes and raw fish to our desserts are carefully selected by our chefs to cater to the entire family,” Hon explains. Chefs serve up Japanese specialties such as seared, boiled, grilled and deep-fried seafood, meats and veggies as well as fresh sashimi and sushi from the restaurant’s raw bar. When Hon and Esaki have to choose their favourite dishes, they go for the sashimi bowls, specialty rolls, and anything on their dessert menu.
In the near future, Toku will be expanding their dessert menu, adding Matcha fondue, an Ube ice cream parfait and a mango ice cream parfait to the menu.
The restaurant has also created a dedicated kids’ play area. “This is how much we love kids and families,” Hon explains.
Consistent with their “family-first” philosophy, Toku also makes a point of sourcing green tea from a small local family-run tea farm in Kyoto, Japan. “This particular tea farm is run by a few local families and every season we receive fresh hand-picked green tea that we serve at our restaurant,” Hon says. “From the first sip of tea to our extensive dessert menu, all green tea and Matcha are from one tea farm. Our goal is to connect families to families, and this is how we run our family business,” he continues.