Wednesday, January 23, 2013


Went to Zakkushi (@ZakkushiCarlton) around 2 weeks ago when it  just open and they didn't even had a sign up or liquor license yet. Zakkushi is a Japanese Style pub with 3 successful Vancouver locations has recently open it's door on Carlton St.

The restaurant is best know for it's kushiyaki (skewer meat) cooked over binchotan which is a white smokeless charcoal made from Japanese Oak
It's mid size with around 70-80 seats

Appetizer Sampler $5.80 any 3 (or $3-$3.5 each)
Shiokara ~ Marinated squid w/ special Shiokara Sauce
Hotaruika ~ Marinated fresh baby squid w/ soy sauce
 Goma-ae ~ Boiled spinach w/ sesame sauce

Goma-ae $4.60
~ Deep Fried chicken knee cartilage
Love soft bone but the batter here was rather bland and soft (wish it was crispier)

Original Oden w/  choice of 5 toppings $6.80
~ Daikon, Takenoko (Bamboo shoot), Tofu, Ikamaki (Fish cake stuffed w/ squid)
& Konnyaku (Yam cake)
This was really flavorful, probably one of the yummiest I had in Toronto. I usually don't like yam cake but this was was really good, the perfect texture and perfect with the broth. Even the daikon and tofu are really well cook/marinated which was perfect since the broth although flavorful was on the light side.

Premium Set $19.80 & Zakkushi Set $8.80
By getting the set you save a bit compare to ordering separately, thought it was a good idea to try some of their signature skewers since it was our first time here.

Premium Set $19.80
Wagyu Beef ~ wagyu beef skewer w/ Oropon Sauce ($6.8/ea)
Premium Beef Tongue ~ thick cut beef tongue w/ salt & pepper ($4.2/ea)
Free Range Chicken Momo ~ Free Range chicken tight w/ salt ($3.2/ea)
Wagyu Beef Tsukune (sauce) ~ wagyu beef meat ball ($3.5/ea)
Unagi ~ Eel w/ terriyaki sauce & Sansho pepper ($5.8/ea)

Although the Wagyu beef was really good and you could definitely taste the difference compare to the regular beef skewer that they have, I don't know if I am willing to pay $6.80 for one skewers.
I actually didn't really like the thick cut beef tongue since it was so thick, it tasted like beef.... while there was really nothing special about the meat balls and unagi. The chicken momo was the one that stood out here, it was perfectly cook, moist and the meat itself was so flavorful.

Zakkushi Set $8.80
Oropon Beef ~ w/ grated Daikon $ Ponzu sauce ($2.4/ea)
P-toro ~ Crunchy & juicy pork ($1.8/ea)
Me Maki ~ Garlic stubs wrapped w/ pork ($1.9/ea)
Momo (sauce)~ Chicken tight ($1.6/ea)
Umeshiso Yaki ~ Chicken thight w/ sour plum & Japanese basil ($1.9/ea)

Given it's price compare to the first set, everything here was surprisingly good.
I was impress at how thin the pork was for Me Maki that was wrapped around the garlic stubs which make it extra crispy. I also really like the sour plum sauce on the umeshiso yaki which make it a bit different.

Yakioni (Shoyu or Butter Shoyu) $1.8/ea
~ Grilled rice ball w/ a choice of soy sauce or butter soy sauce
I love this one and yes I can never go without carbs for long (love my rice/noodle/bread).
Love this crispy goodness, just like the crispy rice bottom of Chinese Rice pot or Korean BiBimBap.
Tried both flavor and I like the Shoyu better since you can taste the rice flavor better.
 I loved it so much that I had a 2nd (^_^)

Ankimo $5.2
~ Cold Monkfish liver (Japanese Foie Gras style)
This was the probably the only thing I didn't like that night.... it was rather bland tasting, it needs more sauce (sour /salty)

Shishito $1.9
~ Twist pepper w/ soy sauce & bonito flakes

Chicken Heart $1.6
I actually prefer the Chinese/Mongolian heart skewer version better...

Kawa $1.6 & Taba $1.9
~ Chicken Skin (salt) & Chicken wing
Both are really good, perfect crispy skin... nom nom nommm

Cheese Mochi Maki $2.4
~ Sticky rice wrapped w/ pork & melted cheese
Had always love sticky rice cake and this was even better with fatty pork and cheese
Need to try make something like that at home ;)

The bamboo cup thing was to hold your finished skewers and that how many the 2 of us ate =P

Dorayaki Matcha Ice Cream $3.5
~ matcha ice cream and red bean in Japanese pancake
Ben insisted to order this and I warned him that the pancake is probably store bought and will be dry... and I was right.

Kinako Mochi Ice Cream $3.8
~ soy powder sprinkle vanilla ice cream & sticky rice w/ maple syrup
Love love love this, instead of the regular mochi it was warm toasted sticky rice cake which had a crispy exterior and super sticky gooyee interior.... and was perfect w/ the cold ice cram while the soy powder just push it up a notch.

Verdict :
Try not to order everything at once since almost everything came at the same time and some dishes just got cold by the time we ate it.
Love all the variety of skewers to choose from
Can't wait to go back and have everything with a beer or sake (they got their LLBO)

Zakkushi on Urbanspoon

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