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Cheap sushi dishes offered close to college

By Janae Harris, assistant photo editor
On April 8, 2014

  • Japanese chef Bruce Cai makes a roll for a customer at Gyoza Express in San Pablo on March 18. The restaurant which is within walking distance from the college provides cheap sushi meals. Janae Harris / The Advocate

After a month of renovation, Gyoza Express finally opened once again to serve a mix of Chinese and Japanese cuisine. The restaurant now has two chefs, one chef for the Chinese cuisine, and Bruce Cai, Gyoza's original chef since it first opened its doors three years ago.
To get a taste of both cuisines, the bento box is the best choice for a great combination.
One can walk in hungry with less than $10 and leave satisfied. The Chinese food is pre-cooked and is kept warm under a heat lamp. From there, patrons can see what is readily available.
The pricing is great and so is the quality. For Contra Costa College students, it is a convenient place to eat due to its closeness to the campus. The best sushi roll on the menu is the "hearts on fire roll" which contains assorted fish and cream cheese, with a kick of spicy unagi sauce, deep fried to perfection. Every bite tastes better than the last, and all specialty rolls are only $8.88. You can't beat that.
Expanding the restaurant has also helped owners lower their prices.
Customers come in and are able to enjoy both Chinese and Japanese cuisine together with the bento box special for less than $10. The restaurant seems small on the outside, squeezed between a furniture store and the San Pablo International Market.
It features cultural designs of cherry blossom flowers hand painted on the walls next to the cherry wood dinner table and seats.
The renovation was complete and open just in time for the first week of the spring semester this year. Food is always about presentation and they definitely know how to present. Patrons are greeted with a welcome and have a choice of where to sit.
Having food under a lamp has never really been my preference. I sometimes try to catch the Chinese cuisine chef when he freshly puts out some lemon chicken.
The chicken fried rice is also a dish I like to catch when it comes out fresh from the kitchen. As a loyal customer, I find Gyoza to be very convenient when at school and I tire of the Three Seasons Restaurant and Subway. I can literally drive down the street and pick up great sushi at a great price. But after the huge transition, they have stopped selling edamame, which was devastating.
Although I cannot argue with lower prices, I used to get the deep fried spicy tuna rolls, which used to cost the most on the menu, for a $13.
But now the price of house special rolls is at $8.88.  

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