Hapa Izakaya on Robson
I am so excited that I’ve finally had a chance to try Hapa Izakaya – I’ve heard nothing but good things about it.
Hapa Izakaya is a Japanese-style tapas restaurant and has three locations: Robson, Yaletown and Kits. I decided to check out their Robson location. It’s a very funky restaurant. Very modern decor with a long sushi bar with lots of dark wood accents. I found the restaurant a little dark, even thought the bar had track lighting.
We started with their famous Ebi Mayo – Tempura wild prawns, tossed in a spicy mayonnaise sauce. They were very crispy and the sauce was very creamy. This is one of their signature dishes. No visit to Hapa Izakaya is complete without them, I was told.
I should mention that their social media use is awesome – I twittered @hapaizaka asking for suggestions on what to order and was given a response within minutes.
We tried two of their rolls. The Fish and Chips Roll ($11.80) Halibut tempura with smoked salmon, served with crispy potato and tartar sauce. and the Apa Cali Roll- ($9.80) Crab, avocado, cilantro and sour chili mayo. I loved, loved, loved the fish and chips roll! the smoked salmon on top was so good, and the crispy potato gave the roll a great crunch. Also the rolls are massive! Great for sharing. The Apa Cali Roll I found a little too fishy. Also I felt that the cilantro was too over powering and it took away from the other flavours of the roll.
Finally for dinner I had The Ishi-Yaki – ($8.80) Hapa Izakaya’s version of the Korean hot stone bowl. It came in a piping-hot bowl with rice, pork, chives, tomato, lettuce, and an egg that is cooked at table side. also its mixed with spicy-miso. This was my favourite dish of the night. It was delicious. I loved the chives, and it had a great presentation, having it mixed at table side. For 8 bucks you can’t ask for a better deal. The portion was very generous.
For dessert we had the Cheesecake Souffle With Raspberry Sorbet – ($5.95) This was far the best, best cheesecake I have ever eaten! It was cheesy and creamy and light, crazy good! I washed down this master piece with a cup of their special black and green tea.
On the drinks department I tried the Hello Kitty ($7) Vodka, Calpis, strawberry puree and soda. I admit, I ordered it because of the name. And it was very refreshing and not too sweet.
This is a great restaurant to go when you feel like sharing a meal with someone – their dishes are created to be shared. The prices are very reasonable and the service was very good. When you seat down the hostess presents you with a warm towel to wash your hands with, and I thought that was a really nice touch.