Small spot a Big Catch

I love a good farmers’ market find and thanks to a tip from a friend I’ve discovered a new sushi favourite and possibly the very best spot for takeout sushi in town. Located in a stall at the Kingsland Farmers’ Market the Big Catch team is comprised of owner/chef Shin Koshirae executive chef Fumiaki “Hoshi” Hoshino and sales/IT guy Nozomu “Non” Koshirae — a dream team of stylistic sushi and awesome customer service.

Calling in my order on a sunny Saturday night I let them know I’ll be arriving within a half-hour as I’m coming from the northwest. Big Catch is open regular market hours from Thursday through to Sunday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. but you can also get after-hours takeout service from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. on the same days.

You won’t find an expansive Japanese menu at Big Catch — the name of the game is fresh fish and they have it in droves. The short but succinct sushi list focuses on regular rolls four types of sashimi and special rolls.

Upon arrival our platter is ready with our sashimi order tucked in the fridge for safekeeping. Anticipating our drive they let us know that they didn’t put the spicy sauce in our spicy tuna roll to keep the roll from getting mushy. After a quick chat with the friendly chef Shin and Non we’re back on the road — sushi safely stowed in trunk to avoid salivating and driving.

Arriving home with our beautiful platter we admire a few of the artistic touches. In the centre chef Shin has crafted a dragon out of wasabi and julienned cucumber. Peppered throughout our order are carved radish flowers and carrots much to the delight of the six-year-olds we’re dining with tonight. Pretty food is exciting.

Soy on the side and chopsticks in hand we try our first bite of the dynamite roll (6 pieces $5.50). It’s scrumptious with smooth avocado and lightly battered prawn tempura.

Next up we try one of the special rolls. The Rodeo Rider (9 pieces $11.75) is rolled with salmon and tempura bits and then topped with tuna garlic chips green onions and sesame seeds. Served with a spicy sauce it’s a great mix of fresh flavour and textures. The garlic chips are a standout that you don’t see very often and a perfect addition to the roll.

Our next bites head into sashimi territory. Served in five-piece portions ($7.50 for any type) Big Catch limits their selection to salmon wild salmon toro (tuna belly) regular tuna and mackerel. Based on our orders of toro and wild salmon you cannot go wrong with anything here. Marbled pink with a silky texture the toro is so fresh and rich it melts in your mouth.

Same goes for the deep-red wild salmon. There is nothing questionable when it comes to the colour cut or texture of this sashimi — it’s amongst the freshest I’ve had.

We return to special rolls this time sampling the Nine One One ($11.75) featuring wonton “bits” and tuna topped with salmon hot sauce tobiko green onion and cayenne pepper. I love the extra heat from the cayenne pepper and the wonton bits add another great layer of crunchy texture.

Big Catch is a fantastic addition to the Kingsland Market and I can only hope that we will one day experience it as a stand-alone restaurant. But for now I will enjoy it for what it is — a fantastically friendly and fresh sushi experience with bonus wasabi dragons.

Photos by Josh Naud



Get a taste of Calgary’s best mobile eats as local food trucks and market vendors duke it out for the coveted title of Calgary’s best street food during the Calgary Street Food Festival at Kingsland Farmers’ Market on Friday May 17 from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.