Introducing: Urraca Resto Lounge, a new Korean tapas joint at Yonge and Finch
Urraca is Spanish for magpie, which is why first-time restaurateurs Sung Yeo and David Shin thought it would be a fitting name for their new Korean tapas bar. Urraca Resto Lounge, located within spitting distance of the buzzing Yonge and Finch intersection, is a departure from many of the restaurants on the old Bloor Street Koreatown strip. “Christie is outdated now,” Yeo told us. “This area has the type of young crowd we want.”
Inside, the seating is divided between banquettes along the wall and roomy couches in the centre of the room with coffee tables between them. Overhead, large-screen TVs play sports (K-pop videos are so overdone, we were told), while a massive spiralling chandelier is a gaudy touch in an otherwise streamlined room. Unlike most Korean restaurants, and taking a cue perhaps from Koko Share Bar, the menu is devoted to plates portioned for sharing. Mini Korean beef tacos are done up with avocado, sprouts, cheddar cheese and lime wedges ($7). Beef tataki features seared tenderloin topped with garlic chips, mayo and daikon sprouts, and is served with a salad of arugula, parmesan and apple, revealing Korean, Japanese and French culinary influences ($7). The ddukbokki, a school-kid favourite in South Korea made with rice cakes and seafood, has been tempered a bit from the traditional version, with not as much gochujang for the less resilient Canadian palate ($7). Drinks include both soju and makkali (Korean rice wine), which are bound to get diners’ vocal cords loosened for the obvious next step of the night: noraebang.
Urraca Resto Lounge, 19a Finch Ave. W., 647-748-7122, urracarestolounge.com, @UrracaResto