Best Toronto Restaurants 2016: Hanmoto

Hanmoto is built from mismatched furniture and vintage diner equipment. It’s carved out of a leftover outbuilding, spider plants hanging from the rafters. The place would work as the set for a tense negotiation over cocktails in a Korean gangster film. The proprietor, Leemo Han, is one-half of the brother duo responsible for Ossington’s late-night spot Oddseoul, and the same izakaya DNA runs through a menu that’s too delectable and inventive to be called junk food—though that’s what it most closely resembles. It’s my go-to place for curried chicken and slaw on a sweet bun, shishito peppers coated with wiggling bonito, roasted-until-creamy Japanese eggplant dressed with a miso-flavoured hollandaise, and, the standout that should be on everyone’s culinary bucket list, chicken wings that have been deboned, stuffed with spicy pork and veg, and deep-fried. They serve them in a takeout box, though you’ll polish them off well before you get out the door.

2 Lakeview Ave., No Phone, @hanmoto_

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