Wednesday, May 19, 2010

[Restaurant] Ju Izakaya Japanese Restaurant

Ju Izakaya (japanese style pub) opened back in April, right at the same complex with J-Town, the Toronto North Japanese supermarket.

We start off with 5 different types of skewered chicken, (from top to bottom): Chicken leg meat, Leg meat with Japanese leek, Chicken liver, Chicken gizzard, and Chicken cartilage (soft bone from the breast).
All of them were seasoned with salt, in order to try out the taste of the meat.
The leeks were brunt quite bad, and the Chicken cartilage were also slightly brunt.
It was quite, including me and my friend, there were only 10 customer. That's why the food came real fast, it's nice and hot.

Took this picture with my old cell phone, so it's really fuzzy.
This is called Motsuni, which is a Pork intestine stew. Flavored with miso, the pork intestine along with sweet potato, burdock and Konjac (aka konnyaku) makes a great tasting stew.
We share this bowl, as the order was about 12 - 15 spoon full of ingredient, with a miso soup like broth.

The grilled beef tongue really surprises both of us.
As we were enjoying the flavorful Motsuni, the over-the-edge saltiness of the beef tongue really hits our tongue!
By adding the lemon juice to the tongue, our tongue only pick up the salty lemon taste.
Less salt would be great, as the beef tongue was quite a thick cut, if only it had some beef tongue taste to it.

Of course we are not nearly full with just that.
Second round we start off with a skewered leg meat with sauce (Tare). The Tare version was much better than the Shio version, mainly because of the sweetness of the sauce gives the meat a different flavor, and the sauce keeps the meat juicer than salt (the salt one was juicy too).

Also we tried the Chicken skin skewer and the Chicken meatball.
For the Chicken skin, we decided to have it with salt, as the sauce would probably made the skin soggy.
It was great, skin crispy and not dried out (served HOT of the grill), and the amount of salt was really nice, thumbs up!

Does anyone really eat meatball with salt only?
Chicken meatball with sauce on it was just ok, nothing special, except the price was higher than other skewers.

We started eating the Ochazuke (お茶漬け) without taking any pictures, so "borrow" the picture from Ju's website.
Three different toppings to choose from, Salmon, pickled plum and takowasa (たこわさ, pickled octopus).
My friend had the one with salmon, and I had takowasa.
I didn't try the salmon one, and because I mixed everything together, I can't really taste the takowasa by itself.
But the Ochazuke was really good, the broth really tasty, the rice are softer than you would have in a bowl of rice (probably soaked in alot of broth), the garnish on top (seaweed and arare あられ) was just like what you see on pictures, everything you expect in an Ochazuke.

We were full right after this. (perfect)

TOO BAD they don't have any beer yet! How come an Izakaya doesn't have any beer or sake?!
(I don't see any LLBO license application posted on the door, don't know what's going on.)

Price wise, real Japanese style of food in Toronto, I would say they are at mid-range? But without beer or sake (or a glass of calpis), I don't think I would visit in a few months.

Let's hope they get the license real soon, and apply the profit from the sales of beer & sake to lower the price of food, that would be great!

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