Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Izakaya Ju

A break from my Orlando trip and back to T.O for now. Went to Izakaya Ju at J Town last week and love it and will definitely go back on a regular basic since it's so close by (^_^) After my Fin Izakaya post here, I've been trying to find another Izakaya 居酒屋 in Toronto apart from Guu. It just happen that I saw some interesting reviews and pictures of this place which made my doubt disappear... I was initially reluctant to try since each time I pass by there was no customer, but this time it was so pack that mid-way through our dinner, they had to turn people away since it was full.

 Our sake, retrain ourselves and order a small bottle.
Note too sweet, a very decent sake for $18

A peek into the kitchen, look at that fire where our Yakitori (grilled over charcoal fire) are being cook

Kawa (chicken skin), Sunagimo (gizzard) and Negima (leg & leek)
~ you can definetly feel the difference with their skewers cook on a charcoal grill and there wasn't need of sauces, just the sea salt was perfect to bring out the flavor that's already enhance by the open fire grill.
The chicken skin was fatty yet super crispy, the gizzards was not that special but lot the leek w/ chicken which have just the right amount of fat & lean.

 Nankotsu (soft bone)
~ just ♥ this, crispy crunchy soft

 Ochazuke Salmon
 ~ rice in bonito broth
 This was not that good, the broth was not flavorful and couldn't taste the bonito... but if you want to try this dish, the one at Guu is super good

Pork Belly w/ garlic sprout
 Yummmmm, BACON !!!!! The garlic sprout in the middle just balance the oiliness of the bacon and they just infuse each other with the own flavor.

 Teba gyo-za
~ Deep fried Chicken Wings stuffed with pork dumpling
 This is a must try at Izakaya Ju.... this is the first time trying this version, I only had the Chinese version before where the wings are stuffed with sticky rice which I prefer cause the pork flavor and texture just compete with the chicken's (O_o)" But still like it and it's a really interesting dish to try.

~ pork intestine and yamcake miso stew
 The intestine was soft, fatty and infused with the miso flavor; but I'm not sure about the Yamcake which is jelly like... i would have prefer actual yam in it cause the other veggies it in was super soft and flavorful.

 Nankotsu Kara-age
~ Deep fried chicken knuckle bones
♥ Love this one and wish we had more sake or beer to eat with, 
but we promise ourselves not to order more "drinks"

We end up ordering 2 more dishes not because we were hungry but because we wanted to try it =P

Hotaru ika
~ soy marinated baby squid
Slippery, salty disgusting goodness... 
again, this would be great with sake which all dishes of a Izakaya 居酒屋 should be =D
Which mean we have to come back and order a bigger bottle of sake and order all these dishes again =P

Crispy outside, super soft and moist center... Cook just right, since most places tend to overcook since it sort of look bloody in the middle

Verdict :
Very affordable price at a nearby uptown location.
 Great skewers and dishes which goes perfectly with sake or beer
Great friendly service.... 
and if you haven't been to J-Town (posted here), you could drop by and take a look before dinner

Maybe even grab next day lunch at discounted price at J-Town since they have a lot of end of the day sale.
I got this for only $4, isn't this the prettiest lunch to bring to work (^o^) 

Izakaya Ju on Urbanspoon


  1. Ah I'm very excited to try this place as I've been looking for a Japanese place that does yakitori really well ever since I went to L.A last summer and had an amazing meal at a Japanese yakitori restaurant! Seems like Izakaya Ju does their fried / yakitori stuff well :)

  2. i'v e been wanting to try this place..

  3. i've been here a few times but sadly never got to try the chicken wings...i have to make a trip again

    just DO Not order the clams...i had that once and it was very questionable other than that the food is yummy