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Apr 29, 2008 08:17 PM

Japanese Downtown

Apart from Japango, does anybody have recommendations for Japanese in the downtown core? We have to go to a show after so it can't be too far from Yuk Yuk's.

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  1. Not sure where exactly is Yuk Yuk's, believe it's in the "theatre district"? How about Ematei on St Patrick North of Queen, they're authentic. Last year I also enjoyed Asakusa, on King East of Spadina, which was run by a young Japanese couple, but I can't find them on .

    Why not Japango?

    3 Replies
    1. re: Teep

      Only one block north of the downtown Yuk-Yuk's is:

      Ematei (as Teep mentioned above)
      30 St. Patrick St. (at Queen St. W.)

      or you could go a little bit west to:

      Toshi Sushi
      565 King St. W. (at Portland St.)

      Ematei is more traditional style Japanese, and Toshi Sushi more modern/gourmet style.

      Both are Japanese owned and operated... if you are looking for something cheap and fast go to the Korean owned Ho-Su which is also close to Yuk-Yuk's:

      254 Queen St. W.(Queen & John Across from City TV)

      1. re: LovelyAsia

        If you want something cheap and fast, I'd recommend Crispy Roll over Ho-Su. I've had three bad food experiences at Ho-Su (hair in my food twice, strange tasting beef) and wouldn't go back again. Crispy Roll is on the southside of Queen just east of Duncan.

      2. re: Teep

        Just passed by and saw that Asakusa is still open. I'll be visiting again. (I think it's 389 King West)

      3. Yeah, Ematei, My mans Nao, Yuji and Phillip can slice a mean maguro, their saba is really good. Please don't even mention Ho-Su, My friend knew a chef who worked there, they re-use their pan chan. GROSS

        4 Replies
        1. re: Bobby Wham

          Pardon my ignorance please, what is pan chan?

          1. re: Bobby Wham

            Been to HoSu twice (one on Queen and one on Yonge) and both times were pretty bad. Chose to go to Ematei.

          2. So I went to Ematei from the suggestions I got and just a quick "review" of the things I tried.

            Tempura appetizer: A good rendition
            Chicken leg meat yakitori. Not bad, though a bit dry (sort of telling for dark meat).
            Grilled Yellowtail (salt). Nice crisp skin, good meat, one of my faves that night
            Duck breast stuffed with spinach. Best dish of the night, IMO. still medium on the inside and the skin was crisp. I like the simplicity of the dish.
            Gyoza. Liked to see it was pan tried as opposed to deep fried at most places, which is a plus. Otherwise reminded me of gyoza everywhere else
            Tekka Maki. A good rendition.
            Uni sushi. Really liked it. Uni was fresh, rich and good. The sushi rice was also generally pretty good
            Spider roll. Used to spider rolls with more stuff than just the crab, but the crab was good though the rice for the larger rolls are a little loose.
            Tuna and Cheese roll. Hahaha, maybe my friend "asked for it" by ordering this but IMO it was an unsuccessful dish. Basically it was nori stuffed with tuna and what appeared to be mozzarella, tempura fried and stuffed in a maki roll. Unfortunately cooked tuna reminds me of canned tuna so it wasn't particularly great.
            They forgot to write down our order for the salmon korroke so I can't comment on them.

            Dinner for 4 came to around 21 each after taxes. I would like to come back to try the ramen and other dishes that aren't available elsewhere.

            1 Reply
            1. re: Blueicus

              Ramen at Ematei isnt that great... noodles were very instant-noodle-like. Not even. It had no oomph, no bounce, not al dente, very .. out of the package. The soup was not flavoured either. The meat wasn't fatty, not that it should be, but I think I would prefer a little fat so that it's nice and moist and not dry. The pork was cut really thick too, so it stuck to the teeth as well. I give it 4/10.