Tag Archives: izakaya

Japanese food Restaurants

Guu – a short whirlwind trip to a Tokyo bar

I’ve been hearing great things about Guu, so I was excited to finally try it out! Guu is a casual Izakaya (Japanese pub) newly opened in Toronto, known for it’s lively atmosphere and unique Izakaya food. In short, perfect for a Friday night!

Notorious for lengthy wait lists for a table, we arrived right after work and enjoyed some drinks on their heated patio. After about an hour, we were seated at a long table with benches, rubbing elbows with other groups enjoying good food washed down with mugs of beer.

The menu features small share plates (tapas style) of Japanese nibbles. Starting with orders of yakitori, we soon moved onto other more adventurous dishes. Salmon and tuna sashimi came lightly seared in a tangy citrus sauce. Creamy baked avocado and shrimp melted on the tongue (with just a touch too much mayonnaise.) Other must-haves include the eggplant, unagi rice, pork belly, and pumpkin croquette.

Along with Japanese beer, sake, and wine, Guu’s signature cocktails are a delightful way to re-live late nights at a Tokyo kareoke bar. Vodka sodas, and cocktails of lychee, sour plum, and sugar cane, are sweet but typically watery – pro: you can drink twice as much while enjoying the frenetic atmosphere.

Guu has a loudly bouyant energy that makes it difficult to hold onto the stresses of the work week. From the moment we stepped through the door, service was fast, efficient, and most of all, cheerful. Wearing traditional Japanese work garb, the staff take the spirit of “genki” to new heights – deftly delivering orders, and yelling greetings to each customer as they arrive or depart.

We could have stayed all evening, but did I mention that they hold customers to a 2 hour sitting time? Nevertheless, we rolled out of Guu well-fed, well-watered, and slightly heady from the experience.

398 Church Street
According to their website, they also have several pubs in BC.

In this picture – tuna sashimi, eggplant in garlicy miso sauce, sapporo beer, and sugar cane cocktail.