I had the pleasure of enjoying the OMAKASE tasting menu at restaurant Kaiseki Sakura for a friend's birthday. It was one of the most unique and delicious dining experiences I have ever had.
The OMAKASE tasting menu consists of 5, 6 or 7 small dishes (you choose how many), each handpicked by the chef himself. The dishes consist of appetizers, sashimi, grilled and fried dishes, rice, noodles, steamed and simmered dishes. The menu changes monthly, so you never know what you will be enjoying that evening. This I found to be interesting, unique and fun because so often in a restaurant in North America, we order exactly what we want. They also have drink pairings that go with each course to complement the different dishes.
Chef Daisuke Izutsu is truly a talented man. Each dish is a work of art; both pleasing to look at and taste in the mouth. All of the ingredients tasted really fresh. The sashimi was some of the best raw fish I have ever tasted. I also particularly enjoyed the soup dish we had that evening. Every dish was so pleasing to look at; I often didn't want to start so not to ruin the food art! Izutsu also used to be the personal chef for the Consulate of Japan.
It's a small restaurant with a very cozy, relaxed and warm atmosphere. The staff are extremely polite and professional. I liked how the wait staff explained each of the dishes carefully to us so we knew exactly what we were tasting. They all were serving us (and the other tables) so we really felt like we were being taken care of.
They also have an a la carte menu for those who would like to choose each of their courses.
This is definitely a restaurant I will be visiting again. If you love Japanese food and trying new things, I highly recommend this place. It is located in the Church and Wellesley area in Toronto at 556 Church Street.
Might I add... the sake is really good here too ;)
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