Best Tasting Charbroiled Teriyaki Chicken Burger and more......Guess where??!!
Based on past experiences, its almost impossible to get a table at Izakaya Ju at around 7 pm on a weekend. However, since its pouring cats and dogs, I decided to take a gamble and try my luck there. The place was half empty when we arrived! Faaaannntastic!
Apart from ordering a whole slew of our favourite Yakitori skewers, we also gave some previously untried dishes their baptism. They included:
- Grilled vinegar marinated Mackerel
- Giant Surf Clam Sashimi
- Conch clam marinated in Chives, seaweed and sweet miso sauce
- Binchotan charcoal grilled Teriyaki chicken burger.
The extremely fresh surf clam with the sweet taste and texture of Mirugai was a steal at $9!
The sauce marinade for the Conch was amazingly tasty! The combination of the steamed chives, seaweed, crunchy clam meat and super-delicious sauce was a great match!! I need to steal this recipe especially the sauce!! Ha!!
Now, for the burger! We have never tasted a chicken burger more delicious than this!!!! The smokey charbroiled taste and aroma from the Japanese Binchotan charcoal was incredible! The chicken was tender, juicy and moist. Coupled with the killer house-made sauce. I could have this for lunch every day for at least a week!! Unfortunately, the burger is available for a limited time only!! Sigh!! :(
Its a great, great feeling being surprised by unexpectedly delicious dishes!
PS: I asked my sauced chicken liver to be cooked medium rare! The end result was amazing! Crispy exterior and smooth silky foie gras like interior!
Wow, I can't believe this place isn't even on my radar yet. Are they strong in all categories? That is to say, are they just as good with sushi as they are with cooked seafood? Is the seafood better than the meat dishes? The menu is a bit of a Meat Fest. Do they have vegetable dishes? And of course, 'cause it's me I gotta ask, how's the wine list?
Its an Izakaya so they only have 'Sake and beer' plus 'Japanese' cocktails. No wine list, I'm afraid!!
They don't have sushi, only sashimi. However, as per Izakayas in Japan. Unless its a seafood specific Izakaya, the menu is pretty varied and mixed, with choices of veggies, meat and seafood!
Check out their menu at www.izakayaju.com
re: Charles Yu
Oh, getting into the sake is just fine by me.
I had read the menu and still managed to say sushi. What I'm getting at, Charles, is do you think they do raw as well as they do cooked? Are the land animals, sea creatures, and plants all given equal amounts of love or do they excel in one particular category?
Ju has been a regular for me -- I love it and its a reliable place for japanese pub food. We always get a grilled fish (the vinegar mackerel sounds LOVELY... hope they offer it for long, tho I'm sure it depends on the fish selection), a grill something (we tried chicken skin last -- new fave!), and the stuffed chicken wings (they're quite heavy.. may try something else now). Easily best grilled place EVAR. Also -- good soba. :)
Hello trane and jennjen18
Yes! They still have ALL the things you both mentioned as specials on the black board or regular menu items!
BTW, the table next to us was occupied by 5 Japanese gentlemen. They ordered a whole bunch of the Deep fried pork stuffed chicken wings. Looks really nice but too heavy and greasy for my current palette!
IMO, since their opening, the grill chef has improved on but has yet to master the art of grilling with the Binchotan charcoal since some of the grilled items were still burnt! At least its better than before!! As shown by the nicely finish chicken wings!
Finally tried it here.
The chicken teriyaki burger was absolutely freaking DELICIOUS. Wow. I agree, I could have that every day for lunch. Just…wow. Perfection.
The pork stuffed chicken wings were also amazingly delicious. Not greasy or heavy at all. On the contrary. Expertly fried. No oil saturation. Unlike anything I've ever seen. I would liken it to a beautiful pork wonton fused with a chicken wing. I can only assume they painstakingly remove wing meat and replace it with this delicious ground pork mixture. The chicken skin is somehow completely wrapped around the pork - taking the place of a wonton wrapper. The meat-scarce tip of the wing is left on as a holder (I pick clean what little 'tip' meat and skin there is regardless!). Also adding to this item's lightness - there are only 3 of them. So you can't really gorge in any case. All three were 2, maybe 3 bites. Will for sure order again.
The Yakitori skewers I was not as enamoured with, although they were still fairly nice. My main issue with the yakitori skewers was that they were a bit plain tasting for my white palette and, to me, might have benefitted from more seasoning. Also, they were also not as smoky as I was hoping for – though the smell of the Binchotan charcoal smoke as they grilled was sublime. I chose the 'sauce’ option for both skewers I ordered, as opposed to the 'salt' version.
The Negima skewer (chicken leg and leek sections) was quite nice and super juicy and tender, though the 'sauce' wasn't superflavourful. The chicken ball (Tsukune) was a skewer with 3 smaller beautifully tender chicken meatballs but quite lacking in flavour. I feel that this might be corrected by ordering them with both the 'salt' and 'sauce 'options, and maybe dipping them in an requested extra sauce. I think I might do that next time.
Seared tuna was quite nice as was beef sashimi.
Service was amazing and just stupidly friendly and warm. Love that.
Will certainly return. If not for the chicken burger and stuffed wings alone!