Restaurant: Guu Izakaya
Address: 398 Church St
Price Range: ~$10
1: Poor 2: OK 3: Good 4: Very Good 5: Excellent
*Japanese Drinking Bar (Izakaya)
*Based in Vancouver, BC
*Couple locations in Toronto
*Specialize in small sharing dishes
*Sells sake, beer and cocktail
Guu Izakaya was the place to be couple years ago, grabbing dinner with friends or sipping away on grapefruit cocktail that your date makes for you. Their food is overall very delicious, good in portion (for sharing) and inexpensive so I was excited to hear that they were here in Toronto as well.
Last time I was walking home on Church street and I saw the crazy lineup outside the restaurant on a Saturday night. Guu in Vancouver has at least 20 minute waiting time, but this just looked crazy! My friend and I were originally suppose to check out Yuzu, but it was raining so hard we decided to drop by Guu Izakaya that was closer.
Guu Izakaya has special daily menu but their regular menu is almost identical to ones in Vancouver so I already knew what I wanted.
I was contemplating between sake or cocktail, but my friend didn't want to drink so I decided to get 'Cherry Blossom' just for myself.
This drink was really good!! It had wine and sprite in it as far as I remember along with other things but it was sweet and awesome.
Ordered: Gyu Capaccio 5/5
*7 pieces of seared beef sashimi with ponzu, wasabi, mayo & garlic chips for $6.50
*I love beef sashimi and you can tell that it's fresh and good quality
*Make sure to eat them with radish that's served in the middle as well as the garlic chips
*I like how they are bit on the thick side cause it makes it chewy
*I could probably eat 3 plates of this on my own
Ordered: Amaebi Sashimi 4/5
*5 pieces of sweet shrimp sashimi from BC for $6.80
*I like the amaebi sashimi part but usually I get this for the fried head
*These shrimps are sweet and they just melt in your mouth
*They are from BC so you know they were probably frozen once but it's still fresh
*Finish the shrimps but save the head and ask them to deep fry it for you
*Deep fried heads are like shrimp crackers
*I eat everything except their eyes...cause it creeps me out
Ordered: KimChi Udon 3/5
*Udon noodles with spicy cod roe topped with kimchi for $7.80
*This was probably one of the most disappointing dishes of the night
*I knew the way Guu makes their KimChi udon but I ordered it anyways
*I prefer KimChi to be stir fried with the udon but they just put it on top
*Cod roe makes the udon kind of creamy and it goes well with the sour KimChi
*One of the carb dishes that will fill you up
Ordered: Kaki Fry 4/5
*6 pieces of deep fried oyster with 3 kinds of sauce for $6.80
*3 kinds of sauce for this was Tonkatsu, Pink Tartar and Lemon&Salt
*I enjoyed the Lemon&Salt and Pink Tartar, not so much the Tonkatsu sauce
*Oysters were deep fried and served with 3 different types of sauce
*How can deep fried oysters be bad?
Ordered: Gin Dara 5/5
*Black Cod for $9.80
*Cod dishes are always on the pricier side, but the way they make it at Guu- you can't resist
*They make it so that the Cod just melts in your mouth
*It's buttery, soft and melts in your mouth....(drool)
*This was actually a decent sized fish, little smaller than my hands
*Good with cold/hot sake
Ordered: Enoki Hotate Bacon 4/5
*4 pieces of Pan fried bacon wrapped scallop and enoki mushroom for $6.00
*I always feel like it's such a waste ordering skewers cause they seem so expensive
*This was decent in size but $6 might be a little too much
*Scallop-Bacon wasn't very good but Enoki Mushroom-Bacon was delicious
*Served with light soy sauce on bottom and mayo on top
*Perfect dish to order if you are having beer
Ordered: Unagi Doria 4/5
*Rice with unagi baked with cheese on top for 9.30
*This is another filler dish you can order to fill you up
*There are lots of small unagi pieces on top and they don't cheap out on cheese
*Entire dish is really hot and the unagi sauce makes the rice really sweet
1/3 way through our meal, I was actually getting really bad headaches from all the shouting and yelling inside the restaurant. I know I've been through it before and I should be used to it but Toronto Guu people are so much more louder compared to Vancouver Guu people!!
Summary: Guu Izakaya is a great place to go if you've never experienced izakaya style restaurants. With great energy, food, service and drinks- it's the place to be if you are out with your friends for drinks. I wouldn't recommend it if you want to have quiet intimate dinner with your date cause you will need to shout with your mouth full and they still won't understand what you are saying. But I will always love Guu Izakaya!!