Ebisu on Queen is a Toronto offspring of the Kamei Group, whom introduced Japanese cuisine in Vancouver, British Columbia. With five Japanese restaurants opened up in Vancouver, they decided to bring one over to Toronto! They just opened up in October 2016 and I had the opportunity to check it out with some foodie friends recently. The decor is very modern while the dishes are both modern and traditional that is bound to please anyone.
Ebisu is a licensed restaurant where you can enjoy anything from domestic to imported fair. They also offer Japanese inspired cocktails, just like this one pictured. This cocktail not only looks pretty but tastes pretty spot on. Every sip contained the maccha (matcha) flavour that you would be hoping to have. It may sound strange mixing matcha with a cocktail, however this drink tasted warming, homey and refreshing, just as if you were drinking a high quality matcha drink. Topped with a riceball (mochi ball), this garnish added a little sweet treat that rounded out the entire drink.
The pictures says it all! Large chunks of amazingly fresh salmon sashimi. The salmon is tossed in a spicy sauce with pieces of avocado and cherry tomato. Garnished with shrimp chips and placed into a martini glass, not only does this tapas look classy but it is extremely satisfying to consume. When this dish came out, we couldn’t believe how large the chunks of season were and it definitely is worth every penny as this alone could have been an individual’s meal.
A classic Japanese starter that we always grab whenever at a Japanese restaurant. Lightly crusted and deep fried chicken pieces, you can never go wrong. the outside was super crispy while the inside was very juicy and succulent.
When this dish comes out from the kitchen, the waitress drops it off to the table and mixes it table side. Since it is a hot stone rice bowl, it creates a thin layer of crispy rice that is cooked just from the heat of the bowl alone. Once mixed, the rice dish provides an umami of the sweet and savoury that the BBQ eel brings to to the table. I can definitely eat multiple bowls!
A HUGE fan of seared pressed sushi! Ebisu’s version does not disappoint! Their version has more salmon per rice ration which is always a plus. With this sushi torched table side, it is always a spectacle for those new to the sushi type and even for those that are familiar with it. This type of sushi is always rich and creamy but yet not too heavy to consume. Each piece of the sushi also has a sliver of lemon which provides a clean taste to help balance out the richness. Will definitely go back to try the other options!
Ebisu on Queen provided us with amazing service and of course, amazing food. I will definitely come back again to try their other Japanese offerings and dishes. Everything is moderately priced and you can definitely have a filling meal on a budget; which is difficult to find with Japanese restaurants in Toronto. I recommend Ebisu on Queen to those that are familiar with the Japanese cuisine and those that are wanting to explore! I will also have to plan to visit their sister restaurants in Vancouver and Tokyo!