Sushi and a pint, please! A Japanese pub favourite is back on the scene in Toronto, bringing fusion eats to a new neighbourhood.
Sashimori (dish in featured picture): A staircase of sashimi! Served on a maple wood pedestal built by Guu staff, this main dish offers two pieces each of shrimp, octopus, hamachi (yellowtail), scallops and salmon.
Hungry for more? Let’s dig in!
Nestled in the heart of foodie-friendly Parkdale, amongst hipster hangouts and eclectic street art, there’s a newly opened Japanese restaurant that already has quite the reputation.
Born in Vancouver, Guu Izakaya first came to Toronto seven years ago and flourished. Repeatedly named the city’s best Japanese restaurant by multiple media outlets, Guu was the go-to culinary hot spot for Torontonians looking to enjoy high-quality, handcrafted Japanese food and drinks in the relaxed atmosphere of a neighbourhood pub. After business contracts ended last fall and one half of Guu’s leadership rebranded as Kinka Izakaya, original General Manager Masaru Ogasawara set out to reopen and re-establish Guu in downtown Toronto.
Hit up the new west end location and you’ll find old favourites as well as uniquely crafted, daily-changing menus to suit the diverse neighbourhood. Kakimayo (baked oyster with mayo and cheese) and karaage (fried chicken with garlic mayo) are as popular as ever, while gyu (beef) tongue steak is a standout, carefully broiled to juicy perfection. The drink menu is robust, featuring sake, Sapporo and Asahi, shochu (Japanese liquor), umeshu (plum wine) and creative cocktails like sake mojitos and Okinawa iced tea.
And it’s not just the food and drinks that are handcrafted: Guu staff designed and built many elements of the restaurant itself, from the maple wood dishes and menus to the stylish bathroom sinks, tiles and mirrors. Traditional Japanese wood shutters bring a warm ambience to the space—perfect for dinner with friends, drinks after work or an intimate date.
Thinly sliced and topped with slivers of garlic, this beef tongue steak is sure to make your tastebuds melt.
A piping hot bowl of Tokyo soy ramen with a generous helping of tontoro chashu pork is perfect for a cool autumn evening.
After a handful of years in Vancouver and seven in Toronto, General Manager Masaru Ogasawara has been with Guu for over a decade. He’s thrilled to be back in business, working with a great team and greeting customers old and new. Friendly and sociable, he’ll make your visit a memorable one.