Why Momo San is Toronto’s top oshizushi spot


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Image: Momo San / Facebook

New Japanese hot spot Momo San has been open for just over a month, but if the online buzz is to be believed it is making quite a name for itself. Located on the once again vibrant restaurant strip on Baldwin Street, the resto inhabits the northeast corner of Henry Street and Baldwin. 

The spacious patio is filled with beautiful thatched outdoor seating and modern Japanese lighting globes. The interior is modernist wood and lights reminiscent of angels’ halos.


(IMAGE: LORNE LONDON)

 

The open kitchen features a low slung serving counter so patrons can see every part of the cooking process.

The night I visited five of its neighbouring (across the street) restaurants were sitting closed because of a fire that had begun the night before at Ryu Noodle House and quickly spread. Luckily, no one was injured in the blaze and Momo San's side of the street was spared.


(IMAGE: LORNE LONDON)

 

The sake list, while not extensive, is nicely varied and is very well priced.

For an appetizer, give the simple green salad a try. Texturally varied thanks to shaved apple and crisp, crushed wonton chips, it's anything but simple.

Give run of the mill sushi a pass in favour of the star of the show: oshizushi. Literally, pressed sushi- this is tamped down rice formed in a wooden box then covered with thin slices of raw fish, shrimp or unagi and gently blow torched aburi style before being sliced into perfect party sandwich style rectangles.

This dish is also available at Miku (a BC transplant), where many Toronto foodies were exposed to this style of sushi for the first time. But Momo San bests Miku's. They offer far more options that are more delicate, more varied on the flavour scale, much less butaned and, did I mention, far more reasonably priced.

Momo San's service is not always super pro. The servers are kind and try hard but they could use a pinch of polish and product knowledge. That said, they more than make up for it with speed and what I would describe as sincerity.

All in all, while we wait for the first outpost of Nobu to arrive, this Japanese eatery may be T.O's tastiest option.

Momo San, 26 Baldwin St., 416-901-8892

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