Other Japanese Restaurants
Bistro Hatzu is a Japanese restaurant that focuses on Teishoku (set meal), serving the main course with rice, a soup, and a side. We were presented with two menus, Teishoku, and cocktails. It is to my surprise that this restaurant doesn’t offer sides like karaage or gyoza. There’s no way I can finish 2 set meals in one sitting, so this limited my ability to try more things from this place. However, the silver lining is the limited cost per meal is capped at $11 to $18 per person, depending on your main course.
What we ordered:
We ordered two set meals, Ton Katsu Teishoku, and Chashu Teishoku. Both set meals come with edamame appetizer, salt and seaweed seasoned rice, pickled daikon, and chawanmushi (savory steamed egg custard).
- The vast variety makes the asking price more acceptable:
- The appetizer edamame was lightly sprinkled with salt and chili powder, giving it a nice subtle kick.
- The steamed rice is seasoned perfectly with a bit of salty flavor that’s not overpowering the taste of seaweed. I was completely fine eating the rice by itself.
- The pickled daikon is more sweet than sour. It’s crisp and very refreshing when paired with either deep fried pork cutlet or braised pork belly.
- The steamed egg custard had a somewhat smooth surface which indicates a somewhat skilled chef. Alas, it was a little tougher than I’d like, and the taste was a little boring with only chopped green onions. This side dish was a little disappointing and could’ve been better.
Ton Katsu Teishoku does not justify $15/meal:
The Ton Katsu (deep-fried breaded pork) comes with thinly sliced cabbage to help with the grease. Supposedly, the crunchiness of both deep fried pork and the cabbage should be consistent, while meat and vegetable compensate each other. This is not the case here. The exterior of my pork was soggy regardless of it being served on a rack to allowed air flow. The outside was a little burnt with some bitterness to it. Worst of all, the inside was dry and I had to rely on pickled daikon to finish all the meat.
Ton Katsu sauce was worth praising for. The sweet and tangy taste rather than the traditional overpowering dourness made this sauce the highlight of my meal. It almost justified the dryness of my Ton Katsu.
Good overall presentation on both restaurant and food display:
The minimalist decoration makes the restaurant clean and comfortable. Sleek menu design gave me the illusion that I’ve walked into the latest trendy restaurant everyone has been talking about. The staff is friendly and everything just worked, except for the food. My rationale is family-style food usually comes with a lower price tag and a more modest decoration. I do appreciate the design and thoughtful details of this establishment, however, I go to restaurants mainly for their food.
Bistro Hatzu gave us a glass bottle of water so we can refill our own glasses. I’ve noticed watermark on the inside of the bottle which appears when you don’t wash it regularly. While understanding it is difficult to clean the inside of a bottle that has a narrow opening, I still don’t feel comfortable drinking the water from this place.
1175 Davie St. Vancouver, V6E 1N2 604.559.7707