Showing posts with label Kinka Family. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Kinka Family. Show all posts
Kinka Izakaya had to re-brand in late 2015 due to the ending of a business agreement with a company from Vancouver. Therefore, all Toronto Guu locations at the time were renamed to Kinka Izakaya, which means "golden flower” in Japanese. The current name highly emphasized the idea of happiness, as that's the brand's mission - to offer guests delicious dishes, and providing high-quality service. Since then, they have continued to provide great food and excellent service with three locations in the GTA and one in Montreal.


Having been to various cities in Japan, I do feel as though I am transported back to Japan whenever I am here. Kinka Izakaya offers an authentic dining experience of popular Japanese eateries including taatami seating in the non-communal area. 


I have been to Kinka Izakaya a few times over the years, and have always enjoyed my dining experience here. Earlier last week, we were invited to check out the new Kinkalicious menu at the Bloor location. Kinkalicious is Kinka's take on the long-running Summerlicious, where they offer a set course meal for an affordable price. It's a great way to sample the menu without breaking the bank. It's available now until July 21, 2019, for groups of 2 or more. 


The 8-course menu offers a range of popular dishes that can be shared among friends and is only $29 per person (minimum of 2 people). If you're not into a tasting menu, then you will find that the menu offers a variety of traditional and modern specialties made for sharing. They also have monthly and daily specials as well including cheap Sapporo on Monday. 

 Instead of beer, I opted for one of my favorite drinks - Kinka Original Ramune ($4). Ramune is a popular carbonated soft drink originally sold in Japan, but it is also available worldwide. The drink is widely known for its distinctive codd-neck bottles design, where you need to use pressure to open the bottle. The drink available at Kinka Izakaya has been re-branded with the Kinka logo, and for every bottle sold, Kinka Family donates $0.50 to SickKids. So drink for a good cause!  


Course #1 -  We started our meal off with the Gomaee, which was blanched rapini in black sesame sauce. The black sesame sauce really added a nice kick to the veggie dish. 

 
 Course #2 - The second course was the Sashimi Platter. It was beautifully plated and came with a variety of fresh fish. Thickly cut too!


 Course #3 - Gyu Shabu Salad

  
Course #4 - The third course was the Angus Beef Yukke, which was angus beef tartare topped with scallion, raw quail egg yolk, and nori. It was a dish that I would never order as I don't eat raw beef, but my friend really enjoyed it. 
 
  
Course #5 - The Fry Platter was my absolute favorite of the night! It consisted of the three items that I always order whenever I am at a Kinka Family establishment including Kinton Ramen. Their gyoza is one of the best I've ever had, especially with the accompanying sauce. The takoyaki was plump and wasn't overly battered.


 Course #6 - The Kakimayo is very popular amongst diners. It's baked oysters with spinach, mushrooms, garlic mayo and cheese. A deadly (if you're lactose intolerant), but a yummy combination.


  Course #7 - Next up before dessert was the Kinoko Bibimbap, which is a hot stone with rice, mushrooms, cheese, and seaweed sauce. It's a vegetarian dish, and you can mix it yourself or ask one of the servers. This dish was really good!


  Course #8 - We ended the night off with a scoop of Matcha Ice-Cream. Very sweet ending!


I have a blog post on my visits to JaBistro in the works, but it's not an everyday place to eat. So if you're craving pressed sushi, then definitely get an order of Salmon Oshizushi ($13.50) - blowtorched Atlantic salmon pressed sushi. I really enjoyed it, and the ratio of salmon and rice was good. 


If you're unable to make it to Kinkalicious, don't fret! Kinka Izakaya also offers an everyday set menu with 10 courses for $35 per person. Overall, Kinka Izakaya is a very solid izakaya option in Toronto. However, I would not recommend going there if you have an aversion to loud sounds, or headache, as its atmosphere is very lively. Thank you to Kinka Izakaya and Jesika for hosting!

Address: 559 Bloor St W, Toronto, ON M5S 1Y6

Disclaimer: The food provided in this post was complimentary. However, all of the opinions expressed in this review are of my own.


Kinka Izakaya - Kinkalicious

by on Sunday, July 14, 2019
Kinka Izakaya had to re-brand in late 2015 due to the ending of a business agreement with a company from Vancouver. Therefore, all Toronto ...
Kinton Ramen is a popular chain of ramen restaurants with several locations in Ontario. Earlier last month, they expanded uptown to Markham with a new outpost in Commerce Gate Plaza. Uptowners can now get their ramen fix instead of having to come all the way to North York or downtown.  
 


I had the pleasure of being invited to Kinton Ramen for their soft opening, where I got to try several appetizers and a bowl of ramen of my choice with a guest. Upon entering the establishment, I noticed how much larger the space was compared to their other locations. The interior design however remains consistent, as it was sleek and modern with their signature wooden furnishing. A perfect blend of traditional Japanese aesthetics with modern appeal.



Kinton Ramen on 7 differs slightly from the other downtown locations, as this one offers several popular dishes from the Kinka Izakaya menu like the kakimayo and gomaae. Uptown guests now have the option to eat ramen or share several items from the izakaya menu. It's really the best of both worlds! 

We started off with two orders of Kinka Original Ramune ($3.50), a favorite of mine. Ramune is a popular carbonated soft drink originally sold in Japan, but it is also available worldwide. The drink is widely known for its distinctive codd-neck bottles design, where you need to use pressure to open the bottle. The drink available at Kinton has been re-branded with the Kinka logo, and for every bottle sold, Kinka Family donates $0.50 to SickKids. So drink for a good cause!



What I like about Kinton Ramen is that the quality of their food is fairly consistent despite multiple locations. Additionally, the portion size is very filling, as I have never left Kinton Ramen hungry.  

I opted for the Original Pork Ramen ($10.99) - sea salt, scallions, nori, seasoned egg, pork, as my bowl of ramen. I also decided to add some additional topics including corn, bean sprout, and seaweed. My ramen came out pipping hot with a mountain high of toppings, savory broth, and topped off with two seared pork belly with a good meat-to-fat ratio. If you're not into the original pork broth, the ramen menu includes other bases like shoyu (soy sauce), miso (soy bean paste), spicy, and extra pork. Additionally, noodles are available both thick and thin, and I chose thick. The broth was rich and well-balanced (not too salty).  Like I mentioned previously, it was consistent with the quality that I often receive from the Bloor location (the one I frequent most).  



From the choices of several starters and appetizers, I decided to start off with the Hot Karaage ($8.30) - spicy fried chicken. The plate consisted of several pieces of large, and juicy chunks of lightly battered chicken covered with hot sauce.


We also got the ikapiri ($7.90) - deep fried calamari with spicy ketchup and wasabi mayo, from their Kinka Izakaya menu.


One of my favorite Japanese snacks has to be takoyaki, which I had plenty of in Osaka, Japan this past December. The takoyaki ($5.50) contained five deep fried octopus balls with tonkatsu sauce and mayo. There was a reasonable amount of octopus pieces stuffed into the flour-based batter. I enjoyed it!


I was pretty full from my meal, but I will always have room for desserts so I got the Matcha Cheesecake ($4.50) - baked matcha green tea cheesecake. The texture of the cheesecake was creamy with light matcha flavor. It wasn't overly sweet like Western desserts. I ended up eating the entire cheesecake slice, as my fiancé was too full - so I didn't have to share =) 



The only issue that I had was that it took a while for the last two appetizers to come out. We actually cancelled our gyoza order, as we were full from finishing our bowls of ramen. The gyoza from Kinton are really my favorite, but I was too full at that point. The one thing that they do need to improve on is probably the disorganized service, and servers need to be more attentive. Despite the minor setback, Kinton Ramen on 7 did not disappoint, as we had an overall pleasant dining experience.




Address: 505 Hwy 7 East, Unit 54-58, Markham, ON L3T 7T1

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Disclaimer: The food provided in this post was complimentary. However, all of the opinions expressed in this review are of my own.

Kinton Ramen on 7 (Hwy 7 Markham)

by on Sunday, February 19, 2017
Kinton Ramen is a popular chain of ramen restaurants with several locations in Ontario. Earlier last month, they expanded uptown to Mark...
A couple of weeks ago, I had the pleasure of attending a media tasting at JaBistro. I have been here on three occasions, and it has remained one of my favorite sushi spots in Toronto. JaBistro is a modern Japanese restaurant known for their beautifully presented sashimi platters, and blowtorched sushi. Established in November 2012, JaBistro has remained a popular choice for many when it comes to choosing a premier sushi restaurant to dine at. Additionally, the restaurant is part of the Kinka Family, who also owns other establishments in the city, including Kinton Ramen, Yakitori Kintori, and Kinka Izakaya.  



Both of my previous dinners took place during the winter time (third experience was lunch), so I was not aware that JaBistro had a rooftop patio. The patio is open every summer until it gets too cold, as they don't have any overhead heat system. JaBistro's Rooftop Patio was tastefully designed with its sleek use of wood, and string lights. It provided a more zen ambiance compared to their dining space downstairs. The patio seats 40 guests, with the possibility of using the eastern (direction) side of 20 seats for private functions.

JaBistro offers a more elevated dining experience by offering both classic and contemporary dishes that are sourced using the finest, and freshest dish from coastal waters around the world. We started off our menu tasting with the first course, a beautifully plated sashimi platter accompanied with a glass of wine. JaBistro did not disappoint me with their selection, and the sashimi platter was a great indication of the rest of the meal. The sashimi was silky, buttery, and fresh.

Course 1 - Sashimi Platter + Cava Sampling

Akami - blue fin tuna loin (Japan), Tai - sea bream (Japan), Wagyu Beef (US), and Salmon (Canada)









Course 2 - Appetizer Platter

Kanpachi Kama (fish collar), Ebi Nanban (battered tiger shrimp), Ika (calamari), and lobster miso soup


The kanpachi kama (fish collar) was a great introductory course, and we both enjoyed the fish head very much. To be honest, we didn't expect the head to contain so much meat, so it was a welcomed surprise.



The platter also came with 2 jumbo pieces of ebi nanban (battered tiger shrimp), which I quickly ate. I liked that the tartar sauce was available on the side instead of glazed on the shrimp as they were on my previous visit, as the shrimps are already sweet in flavor. You can order the ebi nanban from the bistro menu for $14, and it comes with 6 pieces.



Course 3 - Nigiri & Aburi (blowtorced)

Hamachi (yellowtail) from Japan, Chu Toro (medium fatty tuna belly) from Japan, Lobster from Halifax, Salmon Oshizushi, Saba Oshizushi (mackerel), Ebi (tiger shrimp), and JaBistroll (salmon, snow crab, uni, cucumber, tobiko).


Up next was a platter containing chef’s choice of 3 nigiri, and 4 oshizushi, including one of my favorites, the JaBistro Roll. The JaBistro Roll is a signature roll filled with salmon, snow crab, uni, cucumber, tobiko, mayo, and then lightly torched. Additionally, the uni provided a nice creamy texture to the roll, which I really enjoyed.



Oshizushi is pressed sushi, and is made by pressing sushi rice and fish into a mould to create a rectangular shape, and then lightly seared with a blowtorch. The oshizushi sushi are topped off with different toppings to give each one a distinct taste. For example, the salmon was topped off with thin slices of jalapeño, while the mackerel was topped with scallion and daikon radish. Additionally, all the aburi are already seasoned with their in-house soy sauce, and wasabi. My favorite was the salmon oshizushi, and it is one of my must-have dishes.


Course 4 - Dessert

Mousse cake with vanilla ice-cream


We ended the night off with dessert; a delectable green tea flavored mousse cake with vanilla ice-cream. The chocolate sponge cake was layered with creamy and light green tea mousse, and topped off with strawberries. This combination created a very airy cake with subtle sweetness. Perfect for those who aren't into super sweet desserts. If you like sweets, then the accompanied ice-cream should satisfied that craving.

JaBistro is a great place for business meals, dates, or special occasions. Overall, JaBistro is a great place to dine for its quality food, attentive service, and we had an enjoyable dining experience up on their rooftop patio. They are open for lunch Monday-Fri from 11:30 am to 2:30 pm, and dinner from Sun-Thurs (5 pm to 11 pm), and Fri-Sat (5 pm to 12 am).

Address: 222 Richmond St W, Toronto, ON M5V 1W4

Social Media

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/jabistro222
Instagram: http://instagram.com/JaBistro222
Twitter: https://twitter.com/jabistro222
Website: http://www.jabistro.com/

Disclaimer: The food provided in this post was complimentary. However, all of the opinions expressed in this review are of my own.




JaBistro Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Dinner @ JaBistro's Rooftop Patio

by on Thursday, August 04, 2016
A couple of weeks ago, I had the pleasure of attending a media tasting at  JaBistro . I have been here on three occasions, and it has remai...
Yakitori Kintori specializes in yakitori (grilled skewered chicken) but their menu also offers items such as noodles, tapas dishes, drinks and desserts. The restaurant is housed on the second floor of Kinton Ramen 2 on Bloor in Koreatown. Since it opened up in March of 2014; I have been back about five times, as I really enjoy yakitori. Below are some of the other items that my boyfriend and I have ordered on our visits (I did not take pictures of some of the repeat orders from the original review).

You can read my original review here.

** Blog post contains photos of dishes that Yakitori Kintori offers on their menu **


Premium selection ($24):organic free run chicken thigh, chicken meatball, duck breast, premium Wagyu beef and beef short ribs


Teriyaki chicken bun ($4)

Kintori udon (udon noodle with chicken paitan soup) ($8.50)

Buta bara (pork belly) ($2) and ton toro (pork cheek) ($2)

Cheese tsukune (cheese meatball) ($2)


Momo (chicken thigh) ($1.80), Tsukune (chicken meatball) ($2) and Pork belly ($2)


 Miso chicken bun (steamed bun with grilled chicken thigh, miso sauce) ($4)


Negi shio gyu (beef with scallion sauce) ($3)

 Tsukune (chicken meatball) ($2) and Negima (thigh & scallion) ($1.80)

Address: 668 Bloor St W, Toronto, ON, M6G 1L2

Yakitori Kintori (2)

by on Wednesday, July 23, 2014
Yakitori Kintori specializes in yakitori (grilled skewered chicken) but their menu also offers items such as noodles, tapas dishes, drinks...
The Kinka Family has added another successful restaurant to their food empire earlier this March. Yakitori Kintori opened a little more than a month ago, and specializes in yakitori (grilled skewered chicken). The restaurant is housed on the second floor of Kinton Ramen 2 on Bloor in Koreatown. Additionally, the space is small so reservations are highly recommended if you're planning on heading there on the weekends.


 Prior to our date night to watch Captain America II: The Winter Soldier; my bf and I decided to eat here before the movie. I made a reservation a week earlier for a seating at 8:30 pm. When we arrived, there were a few people waiting upstairs for a seat, so I was glad that we had reserved two seats.


We were seated at our reserved table (reserved card on top), and were each given the menu to peruse. The menu was a stand-alone, and printed on both sides with items such as skewers, vegetables, beef, pork, desserts, and drinks. I liked that the menu clearly illustrates the many parts of a chicken that customers can order to consume. 

 

 We started the night off with the tofu & kaisou salad ($7) [tofu & seaweed with ponzu jelly]. The portion was more than enough for the two of us to share. The salad was refreshing, and I really enjoyed the chewy seaweed in it. However, I am not a fan of tofu so naturally, I didn't eat any of it.


In addition to their regular menu, they also have daily specials printed on a white piece of paper. On that Saturday, the daily specials consisted of 7 tapas dishes, and 7 yakitori dishes. We decided to go for the blowtorched salmon belly sashimi ($7.50), just to try it out. The sashimi arrived on a bed of white onion, and topped off with a slice of lemon. 


 

 If you're not too sure of what to order, it's best to go for the chef's selection. There were two choices, but we opted for the Chef's Selection 7 pieces ($14.80). This selection came with the following skewers; momo, sunagimo, sasami with mentai-mayo, tsukune, eringi, negi shio gyu, and ton toro. Apparently for the chicken, you have a choice between either tare sauce or salt on your skewers. However, our waitress didn't ask us for our preference, which was okay because we enjoyed the skewers that came out.

momo: thigh
sunagimo: gizzard
sasami w. mentai-mayo: tenderloin
tsukune: meatball
eringi: king oyster mushroom
negi shio gyu: beef with scallion sauce
ton toro: pork cheek



We also ordered the butabara [pork belly] ($2), negi shio gyu [beef with scallion sauce] ($3), and yakiniku gyu [beef with BBQ sauce] ($3). The negi shio gyu  was included in the Chef's Selection, but I liked it a lot that I re-ordered an additional skewer of it. Out of the three, my least favorite was the pork belly as it was fatty but wasn't as flavorful as I'd have liked.



Our last two orders of skewers before dessert was the mentai mayo tsukune [cheese meatball] ($2.30)  and enoki bacon [bacon with enoki mushroom] ($2.30).

 
The kitsune udon ($7) [deep fried tofu & udon noodle in dashi broth] was a creative dish, and arrived in a small bowl with three tofu-wrapped pockets. When you remove the sticks holding the tofu together; inside reveals the cooked udon. I absolutely loved the dashi broth as it was light, and perfect for after eating the skewers.


The night ended with Houji Cha creme brûlée [roasted green tea] ($5). It was a wonderful treat as the texture of the custard was creamy and explosive with the flavor of green tea.


The reservation indicated that if they're extremely busy, then you are allotted a 2 hour seating limit. I would say that is more than enough as we only took 1.5 hours. The washroom was clean, and they even provide mouthwash to rinse, and toothpicks.

Although the skewers are priced very well; it can really add up once you order the other items off the menu. Our bill for two came up to be around $77 (with tax and tip). Yakitori Kintori is a great addition to Koreatown, and I will definitely be back to try out the other items on the menu.


RATINGS:
Quality of Food: 4.3/5
Service: 4/5
Dining Experience: 4.3/5
Price: $$

Address: 668 Bloor Street W, 2nd Floor, Toronto, ON, M6G 1L2

Yakitori Kintori (Now Closed)

by on Friday, April 25, 2014
The Kinka Family has added another successful restaurant to their food empire earlier this March. Yakitori Kintori opened a little more tha...