Hapa Izakaya is a Vancouver izakaya that opened its first Toronto restaurant in Little Italy early Fall 2012. Yes, another one joining the Toronto izakaya family!
This is quite a delayed post as my visit was actually during their soft opening in September, their first day opening! My friends initially had a tough time making a reservation at this place just because it was so new and they weren’t picking up the calls but lastly, we got it and I had a great time there! Their food was great and excellent customer service!
Compared to Guu Izakaya, Hapa accepts reservations, more spacious seatings and the atmosphere is more of a bar-type in dimmed lights (also, attractive waitresses ;)).
I started my night off with hello kitty ($7.5) – middle in the picture below.
Not too sure why it’s called hello kitty but it definitely draws some girls’ attentions. It was a sweet mix of strawberry puree, calpico, absolut vodka and soda. Definitely not too strong of a vodka taste. Great drink for izakaya type of food (i.e. salty and flavourful).
Left is a plum wine.
Right is Harajuku Girl ($8) – Evoking flavours of cream soda, blends Absolut vodka, Butter Ripple, Sour Puss raspberry and Calpico, topped with soda.
We ordered a bunch of things to share….
BEEF TATAKI $8.99 – Lightly seared AAA beef, sesame-chili sauce
BINTORO $8.99 – Lightly seared Albacore tuna sashimi, ponzu dressing
ABURI SABA $7.99 – Seared marinated mackerel sashimi
EBI MAYO $8.99 – Tempura wild shrimp, spicy mayo sauce
KARAAGE $8.99 – Deep-fried boneless chicken, soy ginger sauce.
This is probably one of the best karaage I have in town. I loved the soy ginger sauce on the side, it was flavourful yet refreshing. The boneless meat was very moist and tender!
IKA $8.99 – Grilled squid, sake soy garlic marinade
YAKI UDON $9.99 – Thick udon noodles, stir-fried chicken, vegetables (vegetarian version available upon request)
ISHI-YAKI $9.99 – Rice, minced pork, flower chives, egg, tomato, lettuce, spicy miso, served in a hot stone bowl
PORK BELLY WRAP $9.49 – Crispy pork belly, apple yuzu jam, pickled red onions and butter lettuce.
This was also one of my favourites. It’s similar the korean wraps. The pork belly was rather dry but I like the combination with the ickled red onions and lettuce. Makes you feel healthier.
HALIBUT TACO $6.99 – Ocean Wise beer battered halibut, crispy onion ring, serrano tartar sauce, cabbage and salsa fresca
Scallop Tartare ($8.99) – chopped scallops, house made bacon, karashi mustard mayonnaise, served with wonton chips.
A must order as well! Sallops were fresh and I loved the crunchiness from the wonton ships.
Overall, I liked Hapa. It’s a lot of “fusion” style with korean/mexican and japanese mix. Would probably come back again if it’s with a big party or when I do not want to wait in line. Cheers!
Harajuku Girl $8
Evoking flavours of cream soda, this cocktail blends Absolut vodka, Butter
Ripple, Sourpuss Raspberry, Calpico and soda.