As of now, I am getting extremely homesick and I want to go back to Los Angeles so very much. I used to always buy into the propaganda against Los Angeles and I used to resent all the negative qualities that people list of Los Angeles. One of the negative qualities I used to loathe about Los Angeles was the congested traffic and the need to have to drive everywhere. Now that I'm working in Manchester NJ, I realize my usual commute to my work in downtown Los Angeles wasn't bad at all. I am spending more time driving here in Manchester to get to places now than I did in Los Angeles. The drivers in this area and the nearby townships are much worse than the drivers in Los Angeles. I used to think drivers in Los Angeles were rude and aggressive because I was told so. Now I feel that the drivers in Los Angeles are so much more civilized compared to the many crazy or drunk drivers I've been encountering here. I am not sure if they are drunk, but the way their cars are speeding left and right and cutting others off dangerously, I'm just guessing the drivers must be under the influence.
It took me more than 30 minutes' drive to get to this sushi place that I found on the internet. Back in Los Angeles, it only took me 10 to 15 minutes drive to get to a lot of great sushi places. After a few incidents where I almost got run off by crazy drivers, the Angry Dragon Roll and the Philadelphia Roll that I ordered at this restaurant came out to be very fishy. I had never had sushi that had fishy fish. I don't think the tuna and salmon in the sushis are supposed to be fishy. I don't think the fish that was used in those sushis was fresh. Fishy taste and smell usually indicate a problem in the freshness of sushi fish. These sushis had prices that are comparable to the sushi restaurants in Los Angeles, but the quality of these sushis were nowhere near even the sushis that I bought in a supermarket in Los Angeles.
The salad that I ordered was also a little wilted, and not like the crisp and fresh salad I was used to in the Japanese restaurants back in LA. The dressing in this salad was awful and when I asked for the refreshing Japanese ginger dressing that is so widely used in Japanese restaurants back in LA, the waiters in this restaurant didn't even know what it was.
The miso soup here in this restaurant was also awful, and very watered down. I tasted more chlorine in the soup than miso. So this was how I spent my memorial day holiday this year, a miserable scary 30++ minutes drive to a sushi place which I couldn't do more than a few bites even though I was starving. The decor of the restaurant reminded me of the chic and contemporary restaurants in Los Angeles, but somehow the restaurant was like an amplifier that made it extremely loud and noisy even when the restaurant wasn't that full. We couldn't engage in any conversation there because the noise level just made it impossible. Yet the restaurant was not even half full. All the good internet reviews on this restaurant were so misleading to me. This kind of restaurant will not have a chance of surviving in Los Angeles, let alone receiving all the rave reviews. Somebody from Los Angeles needs to come here to open a decent sushi restaurant.
Restaurant: Xina Restaurant
Address: 3430 NJ-37, Toms River, NJ 08753
Phone: (732) 279-6327