Would quality be sacrificed for cost?
Attracted to Sushi Rio by the promise of $3.50 plates of Sushi, we had to give it a go (Note: $3 per plate after 4pm offer no longer exists).
30 seconds after walking through their doors, we were seated around the P-shaped Sushi train and reaching for our first plates of food- Don’t you love it when you don’t need to wait to be fed?
Taking in the restaurant’s ambience as we waited for plates which caught our eye, it was fun watching the Sushi masters at their craft, hand making your food right in front of you, while being serenaded by a modern Western-pop playlist. The table setting was comprised of your disposable wooden chopsticks, sauce dish for your soya/wasabi mix, an impressively large and thick paper napkin (easily attracting 4 stars on my napkin test), and water was a self-service station. Although, my spinny tall chair hinted of the restaurant’s popularity, methinks many back-sides had sat in that chair before I, to compromise its structural integrity, thus it also rocked side to side along with its 360 degree spin motion. I quickly learnt to keep still and to not shift my weight around, eliminating the sea sick feeling I was getting when I first thought the rocking and spinning motion was a novelty.
For $3.50 per plate, you were getting 2 items per plate ($6.50 for a plate of Sashimi, but it is clearly marked if any plate was going to be more than $3.50).
On offer were:
Nigiri- topping draped over a rectangle of rice
Hosomaki Makizushi- rice and one ingredient rolled inside a small roll of seaweed
Futomaki Makizushi- rice and multiple ingredients rolled into a fatter roll of seaweed
Uramaki Makizushi- inside-out sushi with rice outside the seaweed roll
Gunkan Maki- rectangle of rice wrapped by seaweed and topped off by ingredients placed on top
With all your usual combinations of raw seafood, this night we had sashimi tuna, salmon, white fish, prawn, scallops, crab stick, and fish roe.
There were many options, the rice and seafood was fresh, each Sushi was well sized (larger than a mouthful) so they weren’t cutting cost by giving you less than what you’d expect. And after 11 plates, we left full enough, where you had tummy space for some dessert from a Chinatown dessert parlour if you so choose.
**Note: 5% discount off your total bill if you elect to pay with cash.
End verdict, quality was not sacrificed for the $3.50 per plate cost, so it was definitely value for money. Was it the best Sushi we’ve ever had for this price point? Probably not, Sushi Hub is still our stand-out for freshness and quality for an affordable price. But for a quick healthy meal in da city, Sushi Rio is worth checking out.
Sushi Rio- Friday 25 October (4 stars)
PH: (02) 9261 2388
Shop 7, 345 Sussex Street, Sydney NSW
Mon-Sun 12 noon – 10pm