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New Annex Guu - any experiences?

Thinking of going tonight....

How's the food?
What's the line-up like?
Should we wait another week due to service or are things up and running nicely?

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  1. Is it open? I thought people were saying mid April opening.

    2 Replies
      1. re: Herb

        ya what's going on how come there's not a thread 100 deep by now?

    1. Well - I went!

      It was loud raucous fun. 25 minute wait - entertaining and friendly staff. Food was fresh - great squid, tuna. So much delicious fried food....some sizzling dishes. Actually cancelled a dish because we were far too full. Sapporo on tap...

      Two rooms - one with communal tables, one with shoes off - sunken tables.

      For a 3 day old restaurant they have their service running smoothly and the kitchen churning out some great dishes. The grand opening specials were the best.

      Go before it gets insane.

      3 Replies
      1. re: MeMeMe

        Sounds a lot bigger, anyone know if the menu is the same or different?

        What stuff do they have for grandopening special?

        I'm surprised you had to wait so little!

          1. re: table4onthefly

            They had a separate 'grand opening' menu - with some special items. We ordered grilled whole squid and it was incredible - there was some sort of rub on it, then it was grilled. So tasty. We enjoyed the sizzling BBQ pork dish. Seared tuna, lots of delicious fried items. The little spinach appetizer was a nice healthy beginning.

      2. Just found this online. The space looks gorgeous. The menu is posted - if you squint to read it, you can see there are definitely some new dishes. I have a feeling that this new location is simply going to cultivate a brand new crop of fans and there will be line-ups at both spots, though hopefully not ever as bad as the ones when Church Street first opened. Can't wait.

        http://www.thecdaily.com/2011/03/21/g...

        5 Replies
        1. re: peppermint pate

          Wow, wait, was this the old Burger King space? Incredible transformation if it is. I know that was one of the spots they were talking about taking over but not sure if they ended up with that one or a different spot.

            1. re: Herb

              Yup. Amazing tranformation. I love that they're following the same model as they have in Vancouver where each Guu has a somewhat different look, feel and menu.

            2. re: ylsf

              Yup, they had their way with BK :P

            3. re: peppermint pate

              The menu is posted!

              http://www.guu-izakaya.com/documents/...

              Thinking of going next week, maybe be brave and go early on the weekend....

            4. Went tonight (wednesday) at 6:00 to beat the crowds. No crowds -- tons of tables at 6:00 and same when we left at 7:30. (Might have been partly due to the snowy weather...) It's a huge space. Communal tables and bar stools like on Church St. as well as an additional room with tables sunk into the floor. The design of the space is stunning - check out the ceiling when you're there.

              Food was very good and it was a lot of fun. Good service. The specials weren't overly exciting: oysters, couple tuna sashima dishes, they were out of the grilled squid. Not quite as interesting a menu as Church Street, and nowhere near as interesting as Vancouver. We had delish deep-fried calamari, and some crazy good tuna sashimi with ponzu. The Udon Carbonara is also yum. Piping hot, with a soft-poached egg on top. Also had delish Black Cod.

              Go now while there are no line-ups.

              2 Replies
              1. re: EarlyDrive

                Lol we did the same - headed over last night b/c we figured the weather would keep people away. I was disappointed not to see the Kinoko Cheese Bibimbap, my favourite at the Church St. location, but I tried the Rice Burger and really liked it. We may had the same tuna sashimi as you (on the white specials menu?) - it was good, but I'm pretty sure I've had it at Church St too. The space is nice though, much bigger. Takowasabi serving seems smaller? Not sure, I haven't been to Guu on Church since late summer. But overall, pretty fun. Rice Burger would be a reorder for me.

                -----
                Guu
                398 Church Street, Toronto, ON M5B 2A2, CA

              2. Been once, will go again tonight. Of the new dishes I tried, I would recommend carbonara udon & oshizushi. For a place that does a lot of fusion stuff, pleasantly surprised how authentic their oshizushi is.

                Guu's magic is that it captures the feeling of a fun night out.

                -----
                Guu
                398 Church Street, Toronto, ON M5B 2A2, CA

                11 Replies
                1. re: aser

                  So wait time is not too bad at the new location??

                  1. re: petek

                    I waited maximum 25 minutes...we were a table of two. We got there after 8pm. It was really hopping but they specifically stated we had a 2 hour limit at our table so the place moved along nicely. By the time we left there were empty tables so we could have stayed longer I'm sure.

                    1. re: petek

                      I got there last night around 6:30 - no wait. I monitored the door while I was there and no one waited more than a few minutes.

                      Loved everything but the tacoyaki gratin.

                      1. re: SweetSweetPotato

                        So,for the people who have been to both locations,is one better than the other or just a different experience? Still too early to tell?

                        1. re: petek

                          i think their website states that there is actually supposed to be a greater sushi focus at this location, which no one has mentioned so far except for a couple raw tuna dishes...

                          1. re: pinstripeprincess

                            oshizushi w/ mackarel mentioned above....

                            torched marinated big eye nigiri is stellar, as good as anything zen offers.

                            seared tuna w/ a ponzu dipping sauce is decent.

                            salmon capaccio w/ yuzu - haven't had

                            1. re: aser

                              i assume there are more options than that if they're really trying to integrate more sushi options? is there a separate menu for it?

                              1. re: pinstripeprincess

                                if you're asking about a nigiri/sashimi menu then nope.

                                On the special menu sheet there's ika, uni available as sashimi, 1 tuna nigiri, 2 raw tuna dishes (1 tataki), and a salmon carpaccio.

                                I have not been brave enough to try the salmon cream cheese sushi balls on the reg menu.

                                as to petek's question.....the regular menus have about 75% crossover between the two. It's the specials that probably have the most differences. I've been twice so far, mainly because I live relatively close, and well.....guu is fun.

                                1. re: aser

                                  Sounds real good.I"m in serious need of a fun food nite!!

                      2. re: petek

                        I went late night, @ 11, it was close to empty.

                        Yesterday was probably the exception though, due to the snow. I've been biking the last few weeks thinking the snow was gone for good. Seeing it again was probably a big deterrent for most people.

                      3. re: aser

                        Ya the oshizushi is really good, I love the char on the mackerel

                      4. I don't eat fish. Wife does.
                        Any options for me on the menu?

                        2 Replies
                        1. re: atomeyes

                          Just of the top of my head, there's edamame, karaage, bbq pork, veggie and ham skewers, beef udon, carbonara udon, ass't oden and dessert. That should do ya! ;-)

                          1. re: atomeyes

                            nankotsu karaage (deep fried chicken cartilage) + lots of asahi brack.

                          2. Was at Guu on Bloor tonight. We arrive just before 6pm and got in no problem but were one of the last to be seated. The place was already pretty pack. There was at least a 45min-1hr wait after 6pm and the line continued to build as time passed.

                            Service was a bit all over the place. Drinks took at least 30mins so order your second before you finish your first! A few food items took over an hour to arrive as well. We were not in a rush so we didn't mind. Staff was of course very friendly.

                            Great addition to Toronto and looking forward to heading back again.

                            We sat in front of the sushi chef, Koi, was invited to join the restaurant all the way from Tokyo. Best seat in the house!

                            -----
                            Koi
                            27 Hess St S, Hamilton, ON L8P3M7, CA

                            Guu
                            398 Church Street, Toronto, ON M5B 2A2, CA

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: panko

                              We were there from about 4:30-6:15, a few seats down the bar from you in front of the kitchen. Our server appeared to be a little green. Our first order of drinks and food was done in a decent amount of time including receiving everything. That was to be expected as the place didn't get full until about 6pm. The second food and drink order was taken by someone else who was back and forth from the kitchen and the dining area. The food arrived in a good amount of time but the beer took a little longer but not stupidly long. The gentleman did apologize for the slightly long wait. We were pretty much done and full, picking at our last plate, watching our server dash around the back tables and never making it to us so we could ask for the bill. At that point I was more curious to see what happens with the two hour enforcement than ask another staff member for the bill. (We were heading over to Victory Cafe for the Leaf game which wasn't starting until 7pm so we had lots of time to kill.) The girlfriend eventually got impatient and asked another staff member for our bill. After plunking down the CC even that took a while to get collected for the portable machine. I guess that's all to be expected with new staff. As mentioned I wasn't too annoyed with that as we were killing time and it was the restaurant losing out for turning the seats over quickly.

                              As for the food, it was all good. I would have liked a thicker cream sauce on the carbonara udon but otherwise all tasty. We will be back to both locations, very handy both of them being located near good beer bars (Volo and Victory.)

                            2. Going Saturday with a group of 5-6.. Trying to decide what time to go. Have the lines become crazy at all like at the other location?

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: ikapai

                                I was there on Sunday with a group of 7. We went super early to avoid the lines. We went at 4:30 and the place was empty. By 5:30 or 6 the place was full.