December 17, 2012

Chou Izakaya

I'm not a huge fan of izakaya but I always like a good place to chill with friends. I read a couple of reviews on Chou Izakaya  and it seemed pretty decent. I'm not a fan of Guu due to the crowdedness and the wait issue. There was a Groupon for Chou Izakaya for 50% off, so of course I had to snatch that and try this place. Finally.

We made reservations for 5:30pm, thus the quietness in the restaurant. The crowd starting coming around 6pm. The environment was nice and spacious, unlike Guu. We are all greeted upon entering the restaurant in the usual Japanese manner.

The takoyaki were okay. The octopus meat was small and close to none existence. I think the best place in Toronto for takoyaki is at Manpuku.
takoyaki 5.5
These cute little round deep fried balls are deep fried curry mashed potatoes. Not sure what the sauce was but it didn't add anything to the flavour. Wasn't too crazy about these either.
curry korokke 5.5
The deep fried sweet shrimps were big, a very good deal for $7. No need to peel the shell, you can just eat everything together. They were perfectly fried. However, I wasn't too fond of the greasy oily taste upon first bite but my friend loved them.
amaebi karaage 7
The sweet shrimp sashimis were my favorite! They were fresh and sweet and the house-made soy sauce was just so good. The soy sauce was not overly salty and tasted just right with the sweet shrimp. I'm in awe just reminiscing about it...
sweet shrimp 7
I sucked the brain out of this poor little guy. So cruel yet so good.

All the blogs I read said the pork belly skewers were really good so I had really high expectations of them. They turned out to be alright for me. I like the teriyaki flavour better than sea salt. They were tender and had the right balance of fat and lean meat.
pork skewer in sea salt and teriyaki sauce 2.5/ea
The grilled squid was a little overcooked with a chewy and rubbery texture. I didn't like them.
ika yaki 6
Tofu steak may sound bad but they actually turned out to be pretty good. The sauce and the soft tofu tasted really nice together along with the bonito flakes.
yaki tofu steak 4.5
The scallops were the most expensive item we ordered and it didn't tasted good. Scallops were overcooked. The combination of wasabi and soy sauce was not complimentary
hotate yaki 9

Final Verdict: Par

Chou Izakaya on Urbanspoon


  1. Thanks JL!
    I hadn't come across any other reviews of Chou Izakaya yet, and this was one of the izakayas that I had shortlisted to try out. It's sounding like I don't really need to try this place after all though .. :(
    Thank you for sacrificing your valuable tummy space for the rest of us!
    I really like the takoyaki at Fin Izakaya -- although they're deepfried instead of being made in the little half-circle trays. There's a place in the foodcourt at T&T at Steeles/Middlefield that makes them using half-circle trays -- their flavour is really good and authentic, but it looks pretty messy and isn't crispy enough because they don't do that perfect cook-flip-cook.

    1. Have u tried Manpuku near OCAD?? I swear it's really good!
      Chou isn't terrible, it's average. I have high standards for everything so I'm just especially harsh and straight forward, hahahaa~

    2. I haven't tried manpuku, but next time I'm down in that area, I'll stop in for an order.
      There's nothing wrong with having high standards -- I may go to Chou to check out one or two select dishes, but definitely not putting my reputation on the line to bring friends there either.