Yes, we WON!! ——————— Champion of “Calgary’s Best Fish n Chips Award”!

In December, we jumped out from our comfort zone and challenged ourself to join the “Calgary’s Best Fish n Chips Award” competition hosted by Culinaire Magazine. Although Fish n Chips isn’t our specialty; we still decided to accept this challenge.

We accepted because we also love Fish n Chips. We have been to few different places to find the best one. The most memorable one was in Montreal Old Port. That dish is memorable because they used Salmon, not many places used salmon in Fish n Chips. More surprising was the seasonings, it has a touch of curry favour in it. It’s crispy, delicious and also different from others. So we loved it.

Although we are not specialty in Fish n Chip; we also want to SHOW Calgarian there may be another way to enjoy Fish n Chips too. That’s the reason we created the Y93 Japan cultural infused Fish n Chips and join this competition.

Joining the competition is a fun and valuable experience. It’s also an learning process too. We need to find the best balance in ingredients, taste, sides, presentation, original creativity, innovative, affordable. and more. But the most important part is the judges’ overall experience. This involved suggested pairing drinks, adding fun & surprise factor to the dish, and how easy for them to enjoy. We want to let our diners know, we used our heart on each creation. We care about every single details. This is also our promised. Every customers are invited guests to Y93 home enjoy the best we offered.

It’s our honour to be the champion of “Calgary’s BEST Fish n Chip” Award in contemporary category. It’s definitely the best news we’ve got in the beginning of year 2021.

We are thankful that our CEO is guiding us and walking through with us in every single step. Ask us for more journey with God story when the dine-in option open up. It’s very real and we would love to share that with you, hope it could also inspire you.

In the future, we will keep being innovative. Creating lots of different delicious and fun Japanese food to all of you. We promised will do our best in every creation. We approved, you approved!

For the full details on the other best Fish n Chips in Calgary and more information of this award, please go visit Culinaire Magazine official website or simply get a free copy of the magazine.

 

Review of the Year 2020

Year 2020 is almost over, it was definitely a challenging year for most of us. Not just for small businesses, but it affected every single household. Some lost their jobs, others lost their businesses, and many lost their loved ones. Once you hear their stories, you can also feel their pain.

However, we decided to change our perspective on the lock-down and see it as a given opportunity. During the time of the 1st lock-down, we had closed for 1 month. In that month, we had extra time to utilize a new way to serve our customers. We were able to spend more time with family and created more new items to add on to the menu. For example, our original bento boxes, more vegan options like Green Vegan Roll, Vegan Soup, Vegetarian Ramen and much more. We also launched the ramen kits and other frozen meal kits for anyone who works from home or does home schooling, so that they can enjoy the authentic Japanese food at home. 2020 was a difficult time but that also entailed more opportunities out there! For us, we have faith that our CEO is guiding us every step of the way! Read our Add Oil 加油 Faith Story!

In December, it is also a very special month for us at Y93 Sushi Crave — our Anniversary month. Thank you all for your support for the past two years. From a 2 people team, we grew into a 4 people team. Still very small but as they say, good things come in small packages!! We are blessed to have two amazing team members who are good match to our Japanese cafe; in return, we also empowered them to growth into their unique personalities, to be a much better self.
In December, we also accepted a very interesting challenge —  Joining the “Calgary’s Best Fish n Chips” award competition hosted by Culinaire Magazine and in collaboration with British Consulate General. This is a very interesting challenge. Although Fish and Chips isn’t our specialty; but we did our best! We created and served the best Y93 version to the judges. Those 5 judges cover the whole city trying out every fish n chips nominees. As I know there were more than 40 nominees. The scoring are based on 4 different areas. The final result will be announced on Global TV on Jan 3, 2021 at 8:20am!! Do you want to find out who will be the champion of the BEST Fish n Chips in Calgary too?

We know year 2020 is not an easy year, many of us want it ends soon. We are looking forward to the year of 2021. We know the best is yet to come. Wish you have a Happy New Year and all the best in 2021.

 

All about Ramen — Reveal the Secret of Y93 Ramen Broth

In Y93 Sushi Crave, we served various Japanese comfort food. One of the specialty comfort food that we served is Ramen. Our customers love our ramen, especially in love with our broth. To be proud to tell you, we make our broth and tare in-house. Today, we are going to reveal the secret of our ramen broth to you.  — Y93 Kitchen.

Tonkotsu Broth

Ramen Tonkotsu Broth

When talking about Ramen broth, one of the most popular broth must be “Tonkotsu”. Borrowed from Japanese 豚骨 (tonkotsu), from (ton, pork) + (kotsu, bone, rib).  Many ramen restaurants make their own broth too; then what makes Y93 Tonkotsu broth different from others? The secret is we specifically used the local sources (more fresh!!), and we also used different parts of the pork bones and chicken bones. Each pot of our Tonkotsu broth using a consistency ratio of different parts of the pork bones.

Why used different parts of the bones of the whole pig? It is because each unique parts have different tastes and functions. For example, neck bones and backbones — create the sweetness; head bones and hock — create the creamy texture; chicken bones — create another dimension of sweetness.

In addition to the bones, our broth also added lots of onions, gingers, garlic, and potatoes; Each pot needs to boil in high heat for at least 8 hours and after that, simmering for another few hours. The bone broth cannot be boiling for too long; otherwise, it will burn. The collagen and the water will separate, the broth will become very oily.

The last step and this is another secret of Y93 Tonkotsu broth is: after simmering, we separate the bones and most of the big chunky ingredients; then we will use the mixing blender to lightly blend all the remaining ingredients with the soup. So every drop of the soup is full of nutrition, we guarantee there is no msg added in the broth.

Y93 Ramen Chicken Broth

Y93 Shoyu Chicken Ramen

Our next popular Ramen is Shoyu Chicken Ramen. Some people like me will find Tonkotsu has a very strong “meat” taste and sometimes the texture is too thick. Therefore, they prefer to have something lighter, not that meaty taste broth. Another great option they love to choose is Y93 chicken broth. Even though it’s light, doesn’t mean a lack of favor or in an extreme — way too salty. It must have tasted the chicken favour as well as having umami out of it. Some ramen restaurants want to simplify the preparation procedure, they may only use the instant powder or pre-made chicken broth.

Y93 Chicken broth is 100% in-house made. Not only use the whole chicken, but the secret behind it is we also use fish bones and lots of different vegetables.

Pork bone broth needs to be boiled for at least 8 hours; in contrast, chicken broth cannot be boiling for too long; otherwise, it will turn sour. The secret is right after the water boiling, the heat needs to turn down to low, and let the broth simmer for at least 6 hours. Again, no MSG needed to add, the broth itself already full of umami.

Shoyu Chicken Broth with assorted mushrooms confit, tomato confit, greens and egg.

Vegan Broth

Y93 Coconut Soy Milk Vegan Soup

The new trend of the ramen market is “Vegetarian / Vegan” options. In tradition, there isn’t any vegetarian ramen; therefore, we do have lots of creative space for us to create this new vegan broth. Our vegan broth is not just a mix of vegetables; we also used the perfect amount of soy milk and coconut milk. But the real secret is adding sesame paste and a touch of curry to create the creamy favor. More exciting is, our vegan broth isn’t just the broth, it actually a full-size serving of vegan soup. When adding the special toppings — assorted mushrooms confit and tomato confit, the juicy from the confit mixed with the broth, become umami explosion. Again, no MSG needed.

Meet our team — Chef Alan

Alan is the co-founder of Y93 Kitchen (Y93 Sushi Crave Japanese Cafe).

He is an artist, a chef, a guitarist, a husband and a loving father of 3 children.

Alan moved to Canada by himself as an international student at the age of 15. During that time, he had to live independently, which means including cooking for himself. Being born and raised in Hong Kong in the 80s, he was deeply attracted and influenced by Japanese culture. In order to satiate his hunger for Japanese food, he used to read a lot of Japanese comics such as “Shōta no Sushi” (将太寿司) and “Magic Chef” (伙頭智多星 ミスター味っ子) in order to learn how Japanese Cuisine was prepared. One should never underestimate the content of these comics because all the recipes used in the stories are actually based on the practical experiences and secret tips of chefs in real life! Every episode of these comics would talk about a special dish, ranging from the simplest finger food to the most complicated cuisine, and everything would be mentioned in detail. In the stories, the main characters (味吉楊一 & 將太) have to figure out the perfect way to cook the best dish ever. In those days, these comics were a huge thing in Japan too. As a teenager during that time, Alan slowly developed his interest in cooking.

After finishing his post secondary education, Alan opened his first bubble tea cafe with his friends. Established in the year of 2000, it was the first Bubble Tea cafe in Calgary. Do any of you remember “Banana JAK”? It was a very popular hangout place and had been a huge success at that time. However, because of the high rental fee and the lack of experience running the business, the cafe was shut down eventually. With his passion and gift in cooking, Alan continued his career as a chef as well as the kitchen manager in one of the most well-known Italian restaurant (Chianti) in Calgary.

An interesting thing is that Alan is not only passionate about cooking. He is also a very talented guitarist. Well, maybe he was too bored while living alone overseas, especially when there was no Internet. To kill time, he spent quite a lot of his time on self-taught guitar playing. He watched lots of live concerts VHS performed by the most famous rock & roll bands, such as Bon Jovi, Guns N’ Roses and Matellica. He watched the videos so many times until he could learn a thing or two from it or even jam along with the band!

Alan said,

“Making a Dish is like Playing a Song!”

“Each musician is unique. Each has his own emotion and skill level; therefore, even using the same music sheets and instruments, the outcome can be very different. “

The same theory can be applied to cooking as well. Each chef has his own unique background, learned the cooking skills in different ways, and possesses different knowledge about ingredients too. Therefore, even using the same ingredients and recipes, the final taste and presentation of the dish can be very different.

When playing music, a decent instrument is very important. As a guitarist, Alan’s guitars are like the extension of his arms; while the amp is the tool to help him project his mind to others. Since different guitars have their unique sounds, you need to find the right one for the right job. In fact, Alan has a huge collection of different guitars!! It is the same as cooking, that the chefs’ knives, other cooking tools and equipment are like their weapons. Without the proper weapons and the knowledge of using them, one also cannot produce the taste of authentic Japanese cuisine.

Interesting comparisons are:

Cooking has many different ingredients to choose from; Playing music has many musical ideas to use.

Cooking has recipes; Music got music sheets.

Cooking method can be influenced by different cuisine; Playing music can be influenced by different musicians and artists.

“As a Chef and also as a Musician,

it’s my privilege to use MY TUNE to cook for you.”

— Alan Yau

Feature photo credit: Jacky The Lamb IG: @VisualStoryTelleryyc and @MoleculeStudioyyc

My first REAL guitar — It’s Japan made!!

It is a Fender Stratocaster Hot Rod Reissue, means it got upgraded hardwares like Floyd Rose tremolo and Dimarzio pickups and some fancy wiring under the hood, it was made in Fujigen factory, Matsumoto Nagano, Japan, arguably the best guitar factory in Japan. I brought it new in the summer of 1993, and oh yeah, mum paid half of it.

It was a hot summer break, and for some reason, I managed to got myself a decent, but boring summer job, working at a bank.I remember it was mostly a data entry and filing kind of a job. It was kinda nice to sit in an office all day with A/C cranked. Also, the same summer, I got dumped by my girl friend.

I been playing guitar for couple years by then, I had an budget electric guitar that never really suits my needs or style, more importantly, most of my guitars heroes play Stratocaster. So I saved up most of the money I got form the summer job, and start shopping, I remember spent a couple weeks going to the biggest music store in Hong Kong, played all the Stratocaster they have, and keep going back to the rack that they stock all these Japanese made Fender guitars, they played and sounded and looked great, the only problem was, they were a bit out of my budget.

One night, I sneaked out for a cigarette and got caught by my mother, surprisingly, I didn’t get yelled at too much, instead, she started lectured me a lesson about life, specifically focused on relationship and and all those stuff, the whole point was, it is ok to be dumped. At the end of the conversation, she asked me if there was anything she can do to make me feel better, and the next day I was at the music store again, having trouble to pick the color of the guitar I wanted!

It was red and basically my weapon of choice for all the gigs I’ve got.

All about Matcha

Do you like Matcha?  I love it so much.  Would love to share with you an interesting article and video about Matcha that I found…

“While green tea has long been a recommended part of a healthy diet, another brighter shade is becoming increasingly popular: matcha. Here’s what you should know about the beverage.

Did you have one today?

What is matcha tea?

Matcha is a type of green tea made by taking young tea leaves and grinding them into a bright green powder. The powder is then whisked with hot water. This is different from regular green tea, where the leaves are infused in water, then removed. Drinking brewed green tea “is a bit like boiling spinach, throwing away the spinach and just drinking the water,” says Louise Cheadle, co-author of The Book of Matcha and co-owner of the tea company teapigs. “You will get some of the nutrients, but you’re throwing away the best bit.” With matcha, you’re drinking the whole tea leaves.

What does matcha taste like?

“A good quality matcha is bright green and smooth. An average matcha will be yellow and grainy to touch—the tougher leaves of the tea bush,” says Cheadle. The quality of leaves impacts the taste. “A good matcha will not taste bitter at all; there will be a slightly sweet taste.”

How do you make matcha tea?

Matcha powder and hot water should be whisked together. It’s recommended that you use a tea strainer to sift the matcha into a bowl to avoid clumps. Then, add warm water and whisk it. (Traditionally this is done with a called a bamboo whisk called a chasen.) The whisking creates a foamy tea that can be poured into your cup. Some people add the powder to other hot liquids, like milk, to make a Bright Green Latte. Here is the video of how to make traditional Matcha Tea. 

Matcha is known worldwide as a popular ingredient in sweets. But originally, matcha is green tea leaves pulverized into micron-sized powder and mixed into hot water to make tea. From the video by NHK World-Japan — Matcha “Trails to Oishii Tokyo”, they visit Uji, Kyoto Prefecture, a place where matcha is traditionally cultivated and produced, and learn how matcha is used in the tea ceremony, which is considered to encapsulate the spirit of Japanese culture and hospitality.

Article by ALEXANDRA SIFFERLIN (Time.com); Photo & Video by Y93 KITCHEN (y93sushicrave.com); Premium Matcha by MATSU KAZE TEA (matsukazetea.com)

All Japanese tea are provided Matsu Kaze

50.9149879-114.0633962

Our story — The Dream of Y93

It all began with a dream deep inside the hearts of our chef, Alan, and his loving wife, Susanna, to create a place in this beautiful and energetic city where people can share their stories and connect with each other through good quality Japanese cuisine.

For Y93 café, 2018 was a year filled with hardship yet a new beginning as well. Chef Alan who used to be successful in his career became a man with brokenness. He was feeling lost and could not see happiness. In the midst of sadness, — (We see God!!!) however, it was also the time when Chef Alan and Susanna welcomed their youngest boy to the world. It was a year in which they found their passion and love together.

Alan and Susanna used to always invite their close friends and family over to their home to enjoy their private kitchen cuisine, where they shared their love of good food and laughter. With a passion for Japanese cuisine, they decided to open their own Japanese restaurant.

Alan and Susanna are thankful to be part of the community and hope that their customers will enjoy their food and services every time they visit Y93 café – a place to feel connected.

It’s a Japanese Cafe!!

Japanese Cafe in YYC, Canada

Y93 Sushi Crave is a Japanese Cafe. What is a Japanese Cafe? Have never heard of it? 

In Japan, there is another name called “Kissaten” / 喫茶店 meaning “tea-drinking shop”, which can also be referred to as a coffee shop or cafe.

A Kissaten serves high quality coffee or tea and other light refreshments. 

But for us, we want to give you a little bit extra. 

Y93 SushiCrave Japanese Cafe not only provides a chic cozy place for you and your friends to enjoy a cup of premium Japanese tea, latte, or handcrafted Japanese bubble tea. You can also satisfy your taste buds with the authentic tastes of a variety of Japanese comfort food, such as Curry, Onigiri, Ramen, Sushi, all in this little cafe!

We guarantee using only authentic cooking methods and high-quality ingredients.  All food and handcrafted drinks we serve are 100% original. 

Y93 SushiCrave Japanese Cafe is filled with personal characters and human touch. In every corner, you can see our team members’ favorite toys, plants, books, artworks, and their passion for Japanese culture.

We are not just a neighborhood Japanese restaurant, but also a boutique full of characters! Come experience it yourself today!

– Y93 Sushi Crave Japanese Cafe 喫茶食堂

Local biz Spotlight — Y93 SUSHI CRAVE

The name Y93 has a special meaning to the owners, Susanna and Alan Yau. Y is the initial of the last name of the owners, and 93 is their house number. Their house number is included in the name because the cafe is like a second home to the owners. You might be thinking that it is because they spend Monday to Saturday at the cafe from 11 am – 7 pm, however that is not the only reason. The owners believe that the cafe is like their home where others can come to share their own stories and be able to feel at home in the coziness of the cafe. Since they strive to make it a second home, they serve their favorite Japanese dishes and the food is prepared with a heart like a home-cooked meal.

Through these tough times, owner Susanna “was not scared”. They have gone through tough times before and believed that God has guided them through it. Through faith and the love of Japanese culture, it allowed the Yau couple to create Y93. This is also symbolic of the logo of the cafe. The logo is a fish on top of a Totoro. The fish represents their faith in Christianity and what has guided them towards starting the business and the Totoro represents their love for Japanese food/culture.

Mari, one of the staff at Y93, is more like a family than an employee. She came from Japan, where her family had run a restaurant for 53 years, to Canada where she came across Y93 and fell in love with the business immediately. She says it reminds her of her own family restaurant in Japan and that working at Y93 makes her feel right at home. She even makes the commute from her home in Black Diamond to Y93 every day! Mari had also shipped back dishes used in her family’s restaurant in Japan when she went back to visit and they have become treasures for Y93. “Everything has a story, even the dishes!” Susanna exclaims as she shows off the handcrafted bowls and plates. It seems as though the spirit of the warm, family-run business has traveled from Japan all the way to Calgary, and that spirit is evidently present in their food!

Website: https://www.y93sushicrave.com/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/y93sushicrave/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SushiCraveJapaneseCafe

Thank you addoil.ca! Check out other inspiring stories at www.addoil.ca!

Written by: Rachel Wong and Alex Tong

Photos by: William Leung

Producer: Brian Wong