Sushi Bar in Sylmar Disappoints

Finding a decent sushi place in the northeast Valley is like coming up on a San Fernando or Sylmar bar that doesn’t feature big screen TVs or that creepy uncle type. In other words, it just ain’t happening. With the opening of Su Viche Sushi Bar, it looks like we’ll have to keep driving to Ventura Boulevard for an albacore fix.

I wanted to like Su Viche, I really did. Even before their grand opening on Oct. 6, I made a point to drive by the Hubbard Village shopping center (where Casa Torres is located) almost every week to see if they had opened. The name made me nervous (just hand over the fresh goods and don’t bother with the Latin twist), but I was optimistic. I wasn’t expecting anything on the level of King’s or Chiba Restaurant but, please, something better than Courthouse Sushi.

Unfortunately, the menu at Su Viche sets you up for the initial disappointment. I tend to judge a sushi place by the items that aren’t fried or baked. At Su Viche, all but three of the “fresh rolls” are California rolls or made with spicy tuna. Everyone knows California rolls are imitation crab and, though I like a spicy tuna hand roll every now and again, it’s best to stay away from the stuff — it’s basically the sludge of the fish ground up with mayo and some sort of spice.

I had no choice but to go with the Sylmar roll (pictured above) since it’s wrapped in cucumber and made with yellowtail, salmon, tuna, asparagus and avocado. The roll was drowning with house sauce when the friendly chef handed it to me; the fish wasn’t very fresh, the sesame seed sauce was too much and it was all together very salty.

I had planned on ordering a sashimi salad, but the first roll’s lack of freshness scared me off, so I went with another one of the “fresh rolls” and a  water eel roll, both of which were nothing to write home about. I scanned the menu for some sort of sushi ceviche fusion (I thought that would be their thing?) to no avail.

The service was fine overall, but I feel like a lot of places in the area have finally caught on to understanding that public opinion will sometimes make or break you. As a result, local businesses are overcompensating with service that feels forced in hopes that it will garner them more stars on Yelp. Can’t we just keep it real? If you provide a quality product, great service and a sense of authenticity, it’ll all fall into place.

I don’t mean to bash on Su Viche, especially since my sincere hope is that diverse eateries will flourish in this area. But I also have a responsibility to curious readers who trust i am san fernando. I have tell them where I enjoy spending my time and money and point out the not-so-hot spots.

At the very least, maybe it’ll help establishments like Su Viche and future restaurants identify areas that need improvement, and bring them closer to that sought-after glowing review on Yelp.

What: Su Viche Sushi Bar

Where: 14117 Hubbard St., Sylmar 

Hours: Monday-Sunday, 11 a.m.-10 p.m.

Rating: **2 out 5 stars on the standard scale, *** 3 out of 5 stars on the “hood good” scale

More information: Sake and draft beer available, including Saporro and Kirin

written by

i am san fernando is April Aguirre, a writer born and raised in the San Fernando Valley. April bounced around the Valley throughout her upbringing and lived outside of California for a quick minute but always felt most at home in the city of San Fernando. To get at April's heart, FedEx puppies to her door, offer In-N-Out cheeseburgers by the dozen or introduce her to a beer tastier than the last.

17 Responses to "Sushi Bar in Sylmar Disappoints"

  1. Noe says:

    Uhmm….you don’t have to drive to Ventura Blvd. Asahi Sushi on Balboa & Devonshire has been there for years.

    Reply
  2. Johnny Chingas says:

    I had sushi on Ventura once, and that was some real garbage!

    Reply
  3. insomniart says:

    What about “Asian Tasty”? They don’t have a wide variety of sushi rolls. But like it. :) Never tried courthouse … but that name scares me… lol

    Reply
    • i am san fernando says:

      Haha. Courthouse is where the suits gather during their courtroom breaks. You’re not missing much. It’s been a while since I’ve hit up Asia Tasty, but I remember having a decent sashimi salad. I just wish we weren’t scrambling for options. If there were some discount sushi spots, lame sushi restaurants, upscale sushi places, damn good raw fish joints, we could all live happily because we’d have options. Instead, all our marbles are in one bag when a place like this opens up.

      Reply
  4. Daniel Rosales says:

    Haters gonna hate.

    Reply
  5. Angie says:

    well i always gotta give it a try before heading west on the 118 – the cucumber saki at Su-viche was bomb the spicy tuna roll was good – hood good lol !!!! i went against the reviews and went tio Asian Tasty and the Hawaiian BBQ was good to my surprise but not as good as ono hawaiian — i guess are place are only hood good lol !!! dome pochanas definetly has its moments too !!! Thanks IAMSF for keeping it real !!!!!

    Reply
    • i am san fernando says:

      Everyone should try a place and form his or her own opinion. If you like it, then you like it. Cucumber sake sounds good! I may go back after they’ve been around a while to see if things get better for me. Asia Tasty is hood good — thanks for the love, Angie!

      Reply
  6. Eddie says:

    What about Hyakumi in Northridge (next to DSW). I like that place. I can’t stand the pretentiousness of Ventura Blvd. I’ve heard mixed reviews regarding this place on Hubbard…will check it out and give them a shot (though, I’ve been warned).

    Reply
  7. Luis says:

    I couldn’t agree more with your post. I am still in search of fresh fish in the hood…

    Any thoughts on the new place opening up near the Foot Locker on Foothill and Hubbard? The Teriyaki House on Truman currently has the highest rating on Yelp, but anytime I decide to give it a try it is closed.

    Reply
    • i am san fernando says:

      I am trying to think about fresh fishies in the area, and I’m coming up short. I’ve had Papa Juan’s fish taco truck, but the things I ordered were fried, so I can’t speak on its freshness. I went to a mariscos place last week in Van Nuys and my oysters had brown spots. = (

      Reply
      • i am san fernando says:

        Also, I have been to Teriyaki House but it was a while back. I don’t remember thinking I should review it, but I have friends tell me they go there for a decent selection. Let me know what you think when you try it.

        Reply
  8. Jose says:

    Anyone ever try the Teriyaki House that’s in the same shopping center as the Denny’s on Maclay and Truman? I’ve never been big on sushi other then the occasional California roll but it seems like they have a pretty big selection, at least in my opinion. I wanna say about 20 or 30 something varieties to choose from if my mind serves me right. Pictures and everything on the menu. Some look pretty good but again I’m not a big sushi eater.

    Reply
  9. karin says:

    courthouse….overpriced boring, suits only need apply,may try su viche, also heard overpriced. I am all for asian tasty, great sashimi and rolls for the price, the sashimi salad @ around $10.00 killer deal full of fresh tuna(however not crazy about there ponzu sauce so i take it home and make my own sauce) hubby and i still love Shogun on devonshire and balboa best bang for the buck and quality, just get the right sushi chef some dont know what they are doing!!

    Reply

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