Kevin and I caught up with Yuzhu and her husband at Okonomi House (23 Charles Street West), a casual little restaurant that specializes in a popular Japanese pancake called okonomiyaki, roughly referring to ‘whatever you like, grilled’. A lot of the Japanese restaurants in Toronto also serve at least one type of okonomiyaki dish, but I was excited to try this place that was known for them.
It was a rainy Friday evening around 6:30pm, and we had to wait about 20-30 minutes to be seated. It’s a small and homey restaurant with lots of couples and young families making up the clientele that evening.
There was a nice selection of different okonomiyaki that they offer! We placed our orders on the below menu card:
beef ($6.95), chicken ($6.95), bacon ($6.95), squid ($7.35)
They came out a little smaller than we were expecting, but four of these plus the yakiniku dinner made up a good-sized meal for the four of us. We didn’t get any extra toppings, but I was still disappointed to see how little mayo there was and no bonita flakes. Probably should have just shelled out the extra bit – there was always a feeling like it was missing just a little something without them. The pancake itself was nice, without being too greasy. The bacon okonomiyaki was hands-down our group’s favourite! The beef and chicken ones didn’t particularly do much for me – they weren’t bad, just not very memorable – and I liked the squid. I would definitely get the bacon one again and try one of the other seafood options.
This simple place really isn’t well known for anything other than its okonomiyaki, and my recommendation would be to stick to that. The yakiniku was alright, and in hindsight it was good to have just to eat something that wasn’t in a pancake, but it’s pretty underwhelming for the price.