Sherman's Food Adventures: Koto Izakaya

Koto Izakaya

Here we go once again with a place that I visited quite some time ago but got lost in the new restaurant shuffle.  Hence, I never got a chance to return despite it being the appealing combination of decent eats, large portions and fair pricing.  The place is Koto Izakaya in Richmond.  This time around, it is the same story where an invite has both reminded me this place still exists and also gives me a chance to see if they have changed in any way.

We started with a pair of small dishes including the Tako Wasabi and an Appetizer Sashimi.  I thought the tako wasabi was pretty textbook with tender little pieces of octopus mixed with crunchy pickled veg while dressed lightly with wasabi.  This came with nori sheets as per usual.  As for the sashimi, you can clearly see in the picture that it was vibrant, colourful and had a fresh sheen.  I particularly enjoyed the hamachi.

Continuing on with some fried items, we had the Chicken Karaage as well as the Assorted Tempura.  Presented in large chunks of dark meat, the chicken karaage was tender and juicy.  I found the batter to be just a hair thicker than I would've liked, but it was still crunchy and well-seasoned.  The tempura was neatly plated and was also flawless in execution.  The batter was crispy and light while the veggies were not overcooked.  Ebi was buttery and had a nice light snap.

Onto some Aburi with the Aburi Salmon Oshi as well as the Aburi Nigiri Combo.  Despite being quite good, the oshi needed a bit more colour on the top from the torching.  I guess we eat with our eyes and it just would've looked more appealing.  But the rice was good, fish was buttery and the sauce was flavourful without being greasy.  As for the nigiri, there was more colour and hence, they looked more appealing.  These were pretty solid with vibrant fish and chewy seasoned sushi rice.

We got a bit fancier with the A5 Wagyu Beef Roll with avocado and asparagus on the inside with some green onion on top. This was a fairly straightforward roll that featured a soft texture with the butteriness of Wagyu beef.  One of the biggest treats was the Uni & Ikura Don.  Sometimes, uni can be a crapshoot, but this bowl was sweet and creamy with pops of brininess from the ikura.  The sushi rice also on point with an appealing chewiness.

We also got a selection of Robata including Beef Short Rib, Unagi, Angus Beef and Chicken Yakitori.  As you can see, the portion size was fair while the meat exhibited charring.  They were seasoned well with the short rib being my favourite.  The chicken and beef was also good with a nice marinade while being juicy.  Overall, the food at Koto Izakaya is a good value.  Prices are completely fair and the food is quite good.  Portion sizes are also decent.

*All food and beverages were complimentary for this post*

The Good:
- Fair pricing
- Good portions
- Overall good food

The Bad:
- Charring on the salmon oshi could've been more aggressive
- Parking can be limited


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