Orange Izakaya Cafe – Regina
Dave and I love Orange Izakaya Fusion Cafe and Bar in Regina. This Cathedral area restaurant (off 13th and Robinson) has been a favourite since it first opened two and a half years ago (also the site of one of our first dates – and probably one of the reasons it’s a sentimental spot for us).
Orange Izakaya offers Japanese sushi and Korean dishes, so it really is a fusion of tastes. Without question, our absolute favourite dish on the menu is the Dolsot Bi Bim Bap (rice mixed with sautéed vegetables, korean beef topped with a raw egg). It delights the moment it arrives at your table,still sizzling in a hot stone bowl and awaiting a stir or two to blend all the ingredients together. Dave and I love the fried rice bits sticking to the sides of the bowl at the end of the meal. I highly recommend this dish!
This visit, we decided to branch out and try some new things on the menu. We started with an appetizer size of Bulgogi – thinly sliced and grilled marinated beef over some broccoli. The beef was very tasty and had hints of soy sauce, sesame oil and garlic. Both salty and sweet and very enjoyable! Just the right size to pick up with chopsticks.
We followed that with the entree of Korean BBQ Kalbi beef short ribs with rice and a small salad. I had never seen ribs so thinly sliced and meaty. I found this meat to be a bit on the fatty side for my taste. The side salad was simple but delicious with a sesame dressing that I loved.
On to the sushi! Dave and I love sushi rolls, and we returned to one of our absolute favourites at Orange Izakaya – the Sweet Chili Roll. This delicious roll features tempura prawns in the center, with rice rolled on the outside and sriracha sweet chili sauce on top. We love the subtly spicy kick the sauce gives.
We also tried a new roll – the Orange Special roll – which featured crabmeat on the top of the roll and an extra roll of nori (seaweed) around the roll itself. At first, I found the extra nori to be a bit too salty and seaweedy, but my tastebuds quickly adjusted! The crabmeat on top was delicious, but I found it a bit messy to eat and hard to manage putting extra wasabi on top (which Dave loves!).
Our dinner at Orange Izakaya is never complete without a Japanese beer. I enjoyed Sapporo with my meal and Dave tried out a new beer, Ichiban. The perfect accompaniment to a Korean/Japanese fusion meal!
Always an excellent experience, from the friendly and quick service to the tasty food, Orange Izakaya once again fully satisfied. We recommend a japanese beer, a couple of sushi rolls, and the wonderful Dolsot Bi Bim Bap!