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Zest Japanese Cuisine Restaurant Review: An oasis of serenity minutes from downtown Vancouver, Zen serves fresh Japanese cuisine in elegant surroundings. Co-owner/chef Yoshiaki Maniwa leads an expert team that includes a secret weapon, executive chef Tatsuya Katagiri, a certified sommelier who has created the wine list. Add co-owner Iori Kataoka, who is a certified Advanced Saké Professional, and an entire service staff with extensive wine training. The cooking highlights fresh local ingredients prepared using traditional methods: BC spot prawns, Dungeness crab, BC albacore tuna, and Pemberton Meadows Natural beef. Choose from the regular menu (rolls, cones, sushi and sashimi), opt for the daily special menu, or with 24 hours’ notice, enjoy omakase or the chef's menu. Starter standouts include seafood sunomono with Dungeness crab, tiger prawns, octopus, surf clam, wakame and tosazu vinaigrette jelly; and sashimi salad with organic spring mix and fresh sashimi from the raw bar with assorted seaweed and soy onion dressing. Consider, too, the Fraser Valley pork tenderloin katsu with Fuji apple salad and house-blended sweet miso, and grilled BC wild spring salmon cured in house-blended miso with sautéed kale, organic quinoa salad and sweet miso sauce. Desserts are delicate and beautifully presented. Bright fruit sorbets and black sesame, green tea or saké raisin ice cream make appearances, as does a ginger crème brûlée. Chef Katagiri's wine list incorporates both BC selections and varietals from around the globe; the saké list is notable as well.