Monday, April 15, 2013

Nomé Izakaya


Nomé Izakaya
4848 Yonge Street
Toronto, ON M2N 5N2
647-347-7937

Date Visited:  April 16, 2013

Intro
Another week and another Izakaya place!

Ambiance
A wall of Saporro greets you at the window front of the restaurant.  Once inside, the restaurant is decorated with Japanase artwork, wooden tables, and is dimly lit to set the mood.

Service
Friendly servers are knowledgeable with the menu.  They were great at up-selling the Monday special which was a Japa-Burger and a pitcher of Saporro for $20.00 (or a pint for $11.00).  Good deal!  Everyone also at the table received a complimentary Malpeque oyster to promote their $1 oysters on Tuesday and Wednesday.

When our order for the oysters arrived, we received Malpeques rather than the Kumamotos; but, there were no hassles sending it back to the kitchen.  Our servers were gracious to pour us ice water all around the first round; however, subsequent attempts consisted of leaving a pitcher of water on the table with no ice and allowing us to pour ourselves.  It wasn't busy either.

We were celebrating a fellow foodie's birthday and so we ordered cheesecake.  We were disappointed when the cake came out without a candle initially.  But, they redeemed themselves by bringing back the cake with a  massive flaming candle!  Perhaps they read our minds? The thought was there.

Food

Japa-Burger ($8.80)
Japa-Burger ($8.80) - Nomé’s original homemade sliders made with sliced rib eye meat and topped with tomato, spring mix, onion, smokey bbq sauce and garlic seasoning.

The rib eye meat was tender and marinated well - good flavour.  The barbecue sauce brought everything together.  A good overall slider - especially when a plate comes with a pitcher of beer.  We got 3 specials to satiate our hungry and thirsty party.

Kumamoto Oysters
Kumamoto Oysters
$3.50 each $21 - 1/2 Doz. $40 - Doz.  Mildly fruity and sweet, with a rich buttery texture.

The delicious Kumamoto oysters came with a variety of sauces - hot, seafood, horseradish, ponzu, basil pesto, and garlic.  Great selection!  It's hard to mess up oysters at a restaurant; after all, all they have to do is  shuck them fresh but I just wish that our oysters were chilled a little more.

Kumamoto Oyster Sauces!

Deep Fried Pork Belly ($6.50)

Deep Fried Pork Belly ($6.50)
Deep fried marinated pork belly with sea weed paste.

We all know that I am a pork belly fan and so I was super excited to try it fried.  Unfortunately, the pork belly pieces tasted "heavy."  There was too much oil on the batter.  The onion and sauce on top were its saving grace - it would have been a complete disaster otherwise.  I wouldn't order this one again.

Sashimi Salad ($8.80)

Sashimi Salad ($8.80)
Fresh vegetables and assorted sashimi with a house sesame dressing.

Great light salad - simple and the sesame dressing brings everything together.

Marinated Short Rib ($9.30) 
Marinated Short Rib ($9.30)
Arguably Toronto’s BEST marinated beef short ribs immersed in our secret blend of spices.

These ribs were succulent.  They were marinated well.  I wouldn't say they are the BEST marinated beef short ribs in Toronto as per their menu description but they are definitely solid ribs.  The ribs seem like they are slathered in the Korean chili sauce that is ubiquitous in Korean markets.

Unagi Risotto ($8.80)

Unagi Risotto ($8.80)
Creamy risotto, topped with bbq eel.

This risotto is terrible!  The rice needs to be more "al dente."  This slop tasted like porridge and the eel was fishy!  I would not recommend... and NEVER order it again.

Buttered Scallop & Shrimp ($8.80)

Buttered Scallop & Shrimp ($8.80)
Baked scallop and shrimp, simmered in garlic butter.

How can you go wrong with shrimp and scallops sitting in a garlic butter sauce?  Great taste and it was a good idea to add those crunchy bits on top for some texture.  The scallops could have been baked longer to allow for a crispy edge.

Takoyaki ($5.50)

Takoyaki ($5.50)
Deep fried octopus ball served with tonkatsu sauce, mayo.

This was a pretty standard offering of takoyaki.  Nothing remarkable to report.

Black Sesame Edamame ($5.00)

Black Sesame Edamame ($5.00)
Steamed edamame mixed with black sesame sauce.

Good idea but the black sesame sauce was too sweet for the peas in my opinion.

Chicken Wings ($8.00/lb)

Chicken Wings ($8.00/lb)
Deep fried chicken wings served with Nomé’s original hot sauce or garlic teriyaki sauce or sweet chili sauce.

Rainbow Natto ($5.00)
Rainbow Natto ($5.00)
Japanese sticky beans with diced salmon sashimi, 2 kinds of Japanese pickles, wonton skins, green onions & fresh egg yolk.


Overall
There are some hits and more misses with this restaurant.  Nothing to get too excited about.  If I go back, I'd go just for the specials!

Nomé Izakaya on Urbanspoon