» We enjoyed a complimentary meal at Yo! Sushi for the purpose of this review. As always, all comments and opinions are fair, honest and completely my own. «
Konnichiwa (こんにちは) my lovelies or should I just say ‘Hello’ 😉
As you know, I have well and truly plonked myself in the deep end this year and decided to go completely cold-turkey on everything meat, fish and dairy-related for Veganuary.
I am actually finding it surprisingly easy to really enjoy my meals and feel satisfied with my food which is a HUGE relief. Things like this are so much easier to stick to when you’re having fun and feeling happy about what you’re doing aren’t they?
There’s so many really scrummy vegan recipes flying around (try Honest Mum for crackers like Nigella-inspired oat pancakes and chickpea curry) and if you want to eat out there’s more choice than ever nowadays.
Take Yo! Sushi* for example. We were invited to their Manchester Arndale branch today to feast on their vegan range and I was delighted to see that it is really quite extensive with over 14 vegan-friendly dishes – both sweet and savoury!
When we arrived at the restaurant we were greeted by a really lovely lady, Emma, who seated us and offered to get a highchair for Lily. She was very friendly, helpful and full of smiles for both us and Lily setting a calm, relaxed atmosphere for our meal.
However, there was nothing calm and relaxed about Lily and although she usually sits quite happily with us when we eat out – engrossed with her toys, whatever she is munching on herself or by us chatting to her – today she was not amused and kept the poor helpers over at Yo Sushi! on their toes as they were constantly picking up her spoons, toys and beaker which she continued to throw over the sides of her highchair in protest at…well, to be honest we still don’t know what she was unhappy with!
She did cheer up a bit later on though.
She was briefly entertained by the chopsticks and wooden spoons we gave her and I must admit she was peaceful for a few moments here and there when trying the little portions that we gave to her from this scrummy collection of these vegan goodies:-
*All prices (some are promotional, see below) and nutritional values correct as of 7th January 2016*
The miso soup comprises of tofu, spring onion and seaweed. It is very light and you can have as much as you like!
The cucumber maki looked really simple and I was expecting plain flavours but it was really quite gorgeous. The rice was soft and sticky and the cucumber was refreshing together with the seaweed wrap.
The firecracker rice was a favourite for both of us. Full of flavour and with just the right amount of heat – it was absolutely delicious. I spotted loads of veggies in the rice including spring onion, carrot, red onion, peppers and green beans.
This is the only thing that we didn’t completely demolish! The edamame was quite tough and chewy so it just wasn’t for us.
This tasted like tomato and herb noodles (with added vegetables). Again, it had tons of flavour and went down really well with us!
The aubergine was sweet and roasted to a texture quite like stewed apples. I mopped up the soy sauce which soaked in perfectly and the topping of cress and spring onion brought a subtle savoury balance to the dish.
Lily loved this and gobbled her piece up in a heartbeat. The pumpkin was soft and super yummy and it tasted like it had way more calories in than it actually did!
I didn’t know how these were going to taste as I’ve never had them before and it turns out it’s a sweet casing with rice inside, like sweet dumplings. They were served chilled and we really enjoyed them.
The vegetable gyoza looked SO good that I forgot to take a photo until we’d eaten two of them already! Ooops!
These were like spring rolls with a tasty thin batter enveloping the crunchy vegetable mix inside. They were served hot and we loved them.
For both of us, this was the highlight of the meal (although it was all very tasty!)
We shared all of the dishes and when this came out it was all shifty eyes and glares – an argument could of easily broken out I think!
This was recommended by Emma and she confirmed that the tempura batter is now cooked without animal products so the dish is completely vegan.
You might expect this to be bland being tofu (which usually absorbs the flavours of the ingredients around it) but it was delicious and melted in the mouth. The batter was golden and crisp and the curry tasted like chipshop curry, it was beautiful!
So, for less than £30 for both of us, we had a mini banquet – just look at all those empties! I think we had more or less every vegan dish on the menu!We were very impressed with the prices overall but what’s really good about Yo Sushi! this month is that from Monday 4th to Friday 29th January they’ve picked a whopping 42 of their best dishes for their ‘Happy Month’ promotion offering each plate at just £2.70 each.
What I would say is that the menus provided don’t actually have a vegan label for the dishes although it does have symbols to show which meals are vegeterian or contain nuts.
I had quickly glanced at the website before our visit so I had a vague idea of what was vegan (view the complete list here) and the site also has full details as to allergens and nutritional values.
I whipped out my pen and just quickly went through circling or ticking the plates that we could eat so we could choose what we wanted without getting confused as to whether it would be suitable for us.
The menu itself was simple and colour-coordinated with the prices easily identifiable.
If you’ve not been to Yo! Sushi before then the concept is that you just grab what you want from the conveyer belt which follows a path around the tables in the restaurant. Each dish is a different colour which represents the relevant pricing band.
It’s also a little difficult to identify the vegan meals from the conveyer belt so to be on the safe side we ordered most of our dishes from the servers to make sure we didn’t make any mistakes.
All you do is press the ‘help’ button on the table and the cutest Japanese voice shouts out your table number so that somebody can come and attend to you.
The table itself is set out well with an array of wooden cutlery – normal chopsticks, wider chopsticks and spoons – together with pickled ginger, soy sauce and sauce dishes, wasabi, napkins etc.
There is fizzy/still water available via small taps on the table for just £1.20 with unlimited refills.
However we fancied a change so for this meal Mike had a sprite and I had a diet coke for £2.40 each.
I was pleasantly surprised to see that Yo! Sushi now offer takeaway delivery from your local restaurant. How did I not know this? 😮 Why not check out their Yo! To Go menu and find your nearest branch? I had a nosey earlier and it’s through JustEat so they already have my details for quick and easy ordering.
We were very, very impressed with Yo! Sushi and their vegan range. It was so tasty that, as ex-meat-eaters, we didn’t miss it at all even when it was sneaking past us on the conveyer belt.
It’s dishes like these that showcase just how flavoursome and fulfilling a vegan diet can be and the value for money was incredible!
We can’t wait to go back and enjoy our next meal at Yo! Sushi sometime soon (maybe Valentine’s Day? *hint hint*)
Have you been to Yo! Sushi recently?
What’s your favourite dish?