Introducing: Hanmoto, a Little Portugal izakaya from OddSeoul’s co-owner
Contact Info: 2 Lakeview Ave., @HANMOTO_
Neighbourhood: Little Portugal
Owner and Executive Chef: Leemo Han (OddSeoul)
Chef: Joe Kim (Electric Mud BBQ, Origin Liberty, Momofuku Toronto)
Bartender: Ihn Huh (Swish by Han)
The Food: A short menu divided into raw and hot items that, in izakaya fashion, are meant to accompany booze. Expect to find Japanese riffs on snack food favourites like the Moto Bun, a fried coco bun filled with Japanese chicken curry and Jamaican slaw; and something called Dyno Wings, deep-fried, deboned chicken wings stuffed dumpling-style with seasoned ground pork, then tossed in a spicy house-made sauce. The Uni Bomb—a daily special and the bar’s play on do-it-yourself tacos—features tongues of sea urchin and all the ingredients needed to make your own hand cones.
The Drinks: A short list of beers, including a few Asian brands, available in bottles, cans or on tap; a few house wines; and a rotating selection of cocktails that, like the food, have a Japanese spin.
The Place: Garage grunge meets Art Deco, with a hit of neon. Han and his father decorated the eclectic space with salvaged finds, like the chairs and the prescription sign hung above vintage cabinets, along with metalwork from the now closed Swish by Han.