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“Authentic Japanese”
Review of Koyoi

Ranked #2,593 of 8,648 Restaurants in Toronto
Cuisines: Japanese
Neighbourhood: Downtown
Restaurant details
Neighbourhood: Downtown
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Authentic Japanese”
Reviewed 26 March 2011

Great! Real izakaya style food at reasonable prices.

Wednesdays they make tonkotsu ramen, the best I've had outside Japan so far.

  • Visited March 2011
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
2 Thank polypx
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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13 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Japanese first
  • Any
English first
Medellin, Colombia
Level 6 Contributor
248 reviews
165 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 118 helpful votes
“Lost in Translation?”
Reviewed 1 October 2009

As you head up Yonge Street away from Downtown Toronto one begins to believe that within the rash of ethnic eating places, some of these may be very good. Staring at the menus, and looking inside more negative emotions take hold; they may be good, but equally they may be a wasted evening.

Just off the main strip lies Koyoi. Outside there are listed the specials for the day and they sound promising. Inside it looks a pleasant and nicely lit room with a nice bar. Outside there is a small terrace however it does overlook the local corner Western Union.

Inside the staff are wonderful. Young, perhaps in a couple of cases rather inexperienced but more likely trying to juggle the cultural differences and needs of their Japanese and local customers. They are friendly, hard working and willing to chat. The food here isn't always easy, but it is Japanese and to me seemed well prepared, interesting and tasty.

There did seem to be a lack of non-Japanese clients. Part of this may be the lack of sushi, that no doubt many strolling would be diners are expecting. There's enough low grade sushi in the area to fill a proverbial container ship 'Love Boat' assortment so that's no big loss. This is however an Izakaya which seems to translate as a drinking establishment with (small) dishes of food.

The food is very good, and if the braised pork is on the menu order it, if portions still remains (on one evening several of the specials were already gone). There's also an excellent sake and shochu list that's worth exploring.

How much the evening costs you will to some extent depend on how much exploring you make of the sake and shochu lists.

This is a really good place. However it's fairly new and one does worry about whether it will survive. The location probably isn't perfect and it doesn't easily fit into what people are probably expecting when they look for Japanese food. This is not Benihana but everyone who was there seemed happy and you won't find a friendlier group of staff, or a more comfortable place to eat. I don't live in Toronto, but I really want this place to make it. I want it to be there the next time I return, and it has my complete recommendation.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1 Thank PhileasFoggontour
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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