Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Yakitori Kintori [Japanese]

Yakitori Kintori (@yakitorikintori) is a compact space above the recently opened 2nd location of Kinton Ramen on Bloor. This newest edition of the Guu, Kinton & Jabistro family of restaurant is devoted to Japanese Charcoal Grilled Yakitori / Skewers.

The space barely has 40 seats, so I highly recommend making a reservation since I saw quite a lot of people being turn away that day. You got to choose between regular tables and bar seats where you get a front row seats to the kitchen where all the skewers are being made.

Just as their logo is a Chicken, the menu consist of mainly chicken skewers and is illustrated on the menu with over a dozen parts. The day we went, they didn't have any of the special parts like neck, chicken oyster or cartilage (very very disappointing) and not even the Pork Intestine (Buta Horumon)

And of course, we choose to sit by the bar / kitchen.

"Binchotan" which is a traditional charcoal of Japan which burns at a lower temperature for a longer period than ordinary charcoal. And as you can see, it does not release smoke which is perfect to use indoor at restaurants.


Smoked Ankimo $8
~ smoked monk fish liver w/ ponzu
Love monk fish liver but this was a bit too salty and sour/vinegary for me, the texture wasn't as creamy smooth as I would have like it (my fave is still the one here).

Most Chicken & Pork skewers are anywhere from $1.90 to $2.50 each while the Beef is a bit pricier at $3-$9. You get to choose between TARE sauce (teriyaki) and Salts for all of your skewers.

 These pretty much came out all at once, so I'll recommend you to order in small batches or ask you server to space the amount of skewers coming out... you don't want to eat cold meat.

I'll have to say that all the chicken ones we have tried are very good but not so for the pork and beef. And I did like the Mekyabetsu (brussels sprout) a lot, will have to try that at home come BBQ season.

House Made Hot Sauce 3 for $3
~ Nama Shichimi (seven spices chili sauce), Nama Yuzu Kosho (seven spices chili sauce) & Jalapeno
They were more like chili paste than sauce, thought it was sort of dry on dry with the meat although it was very tasty and totally different in flavors and level of spiciness. The green Jalapeno one was surprisingly spicy, so be careful if you can't take the heat.

Okura $1.60
~ okra

Uzura $3.5
~ skewered 1/2 quail
This was probably my fave of the night, perfectly cook and sauced, it was incredibly tender and delicious. Quail can so easily be over or under cooked and this was just so perfect with the slightly charred skin that gave it even more flavors.

 Kitsune Udon $7
~ deep fried tofu & udon noodle in dashi broth
I actually never had this dish before and we both really liked it especially after all the meat. The perfectly cooked udon is inside the tofu pockets w/ a simply sweet refreshing dashi broth. 
Not only delicious but the presentation is super cute as well, so this is highly recommended.

Yakionigiri $3
~ bincho charcoal grilled rice ball - choice of plum or konbu kelp
Love this, perfectly cooked rice that's then perfectly grilled. Remember how much I like the one here, it wasn't as good when I went back the 2nd time, i was actually disgusting so I am glad I found a new place that does it well. Love the taste of burnt/charred rice, we end up ordering both flavors and I did prefer the plum one better since it had a more prominent flavor than the kelp.

Sake Ice Cream $5
~ sake vanilla ice cream
This tasted like it was made with Sake Kasu, the leftover from sake brewering which ios a paste like consistency. Although I really like the strong fermeted rice flavor, I didn't like how thick (pasty) it make the ice cream.

Verdict :
Hit and Misses, will definitely want to come back for the skewers that they didn't have that day.
Amazing service but I would say it's more a eat and go restaurant.
Without ordering any drink, our bill came to $75 with tax for the 2 of us, this was an early dinner after a beer/food event... but on a regular day, I don't think Ben would have left full.
So if you going with your guy, probably have to head down for a bowl of ramen (>_^)

Yakitori Kintori on Urbanspoon

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