Restaurant: Kingyo Izakaya
Location: 871 Denman Street, Vancouver, BC
I’ve heard a lot of praises about Kingyo, so after working all day Downtown it was just a short distance away for some good eats. The interior has a very contemporary vibe along with an upbeat staff. I came on a random weekday and the place was packed so we had to sit along the bar, which I actually prefer with only two people. I think it’s nice to see how your food is made and the people serving up the dishes are always so “smiley” around the bar. Also, the atmosphere was simply relaxed and it seemed that there were a lot of people who just got off work (still in their suits) just chatting away with a cold drink in hand. Kingyo just seemed to be the perfect after-work treat.
Work just seems a lot more rewarding when it ends with a refreshing drink. This was a really nice spin on Sangria, very sweet and the alcohol wasn’t too obvious, which is to my liking. I was surprised that the Melon flavor was quite strong. But what impressed me the most was the presentation; the green-white gradient layers in the Kingyo Glass was very pleasing to the eyes.
These may just look like regular potato wedges, but they are so much better than you’d think! There is just something about the seasoning, it was somewhat spicy with a hint of sweetness. Each wedge was fried to a golden brown, a crisp skin and a soft center. Paired with a creamy mayo, I thought these fries were AWESOME!
Everything tastes better deep fried (LOL)? Well, I’m not crazy about fried foods, but even though this was deep fried it was very light. The outer skin was golden and had a nice crunch to it, while the insides remained tender and flavorful. I could still taste a very strong salmon flavor and it was complemented with a cream sweet mayo. Maybe deep fried is better (lol…either way this was yummy!)?
I’ve had Tuna, Salmon, and Beef Carpaccio several times, but Scallops would have to be my favorite! The Scallops were extremely fresh with a slightly charred flavor from being seared. While the mixture of sauce was excellent! I thought the Mayo, Misago, and Thick Soy-based Sauce blended together to bring out a unique flavor, but didn’t overpower the freshness of the Scallop. This dish is really light (may feel like you didn’t eat anything) and one of my favorites of the night. Especially with the colorful plating, I’d call it an artistic scramble of ingredients.
I know a lot of Japanese Restaurants always give frozen grapes at the end of the meal, but it never gets old. The crunch that I got from the icy skin and semi-frozen center was extremely refreshing. No dessert today, but the grapes were a satisfying finish.
Would love to visit Kingyo again with a larger group because there’s just so much I want to try and dishes that I’d like to savor again. The vibe is very much like Hapa Izakaya, but with it’s own twist. I think this would be a prime place to socialize with co-workers or even pre-drink with friends before hitting the clubs. Really hope I can go again soon!