I am partaking in a journey where I will appraise every non-franchise restaurant in town and review their food as well as their service. It is an attempt to expand my mind and appetite. Simultaneously, I will also be taking what I learn from these establishments and attempting to remake them with my extremely limited skill.
With gibberish kanji on its windows, So Good’s initial impression was that of a smokescreen, a facade covering a more accurate fast food categorization. That suspicion was dismissed upon entering. Paper doors and hanging scrolls lead to a positive initial reaction, quickly sullied by loud contemporary music bucketing from ceiling speakers. This was further exasperated by the immense menus offered to me, and the plural was not a misspelling. Not willing to settle upon one cuisine, and realizing perhaps incorrectly that a Japanese restaurant would not succeed given this much production value (it’s astounding how this place doesn’t resemble the McDonalds it was built from), So Good had three menus including one brimming with Americanized Chinese dishes.
Re-read that last sentence, ensuring you place an unpleasant emphasis on the word “Americanized”. When I type it, I’m using it as a curse word.
The immense Japanese selection was offered on a mahogany Kubrikian monolith (1 by 4 by 9, I checked). And yet, despite this cacophony of cuisine, there wasn’t a single lunch combo offering soup and salad with sushi. Having filled my quota for Chinese this month, I kept with the sushi and started with a miso soup, which arrived faster than a Big Mac—the apple not falling far…
I followed that with their most expensive sushi combo, priced at $15.95, offering one roll and six nigiri. The presented dish was incredibly disappointing. I’ve previously stated that tamagoyaki (egg nigiri) can be counted as an indicator of stinginess. So Good not only dropped one down on my plate, but coupled that with an avocado nigiri, which I had never seen anyone do (a production of about 10 cents). To counter those criticisms with a little silver, the sushi from So Good is some of the best I’ve sampled in some time, almost climbing to the peak of Suzuran, but like Sisyphus, the stone is fated to either never reach the peak or roll down the opposite side. The futility of this task is based around so many places like So Good cutting corners in customer satisfaction. Is it a fast food joint or is it a Japanese restaurant? My soup arriving in less than thirty seconds is not a compliment despite some readers assuming otherwise. It arrived before my water. And despite the positive spin being given to the quality of the sushi, I expected more from sixteen bucks than a salmon, a tuna, a shrimp, an egg, an avocado, and half a dynamite roll. To compound this, the dynamite roll was cut far too big and the dish was placed sans wasabi and pickled ginger (a mistake rectified with a comment).
So Good suffers from a cursed name, easily mocked if unto careful. It would be like naming a film “Awesome Movie”; you might as well name your restaurant “Amazing Food” and wait for the critics to swarm like vultures circling a crippled horse. I admire the use of their sushi bar, the saturation of Japanese images, and the overall production value of the location. So Good only needs to overcome certain quality control issues, rooted firstly with their muddled and confusing mess of a menu. Being offered a fortune cookie after eating sushi just doesn’t make sense to me. They’re unlikely to change given the deluge of customers once the arms aligned at noon. After Suzuran passed away (I do treat it as a death in the family), I started looking for my replacement tradition, my weekly dose of sushi. So Good came very close to achieving this, but there was a lingering disappointment, like the aftertaste of a poorly mixed martini, that I just couldn’t settle. The most striking attribute of So Good is its location, halfway across town from its only serious competition, Sakura. You can opt for So Good or sully your soul in the impressive number of fast food joints within walking distance, including Wendy’s, Burger King, and McDonalds. The real threat came from Boston Pizza around the corner, no longer a concern given it burning to ash recently. That may explain the sudden influx of population in So Good. I just hope they don’t let it come to their heads. There are issues that should be resolved, and if addressed, So Good could become the best Japanese restaurant in Prince George. Until then, you still have Sakura.
I miss Suzuran. I’m sounding like a broken record.
I’m sounding like a broken record.