Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Iki Mandala Bistro

There are two Iki in the Kits area: The main one, Iki Japanese Bistro is near Broadway and the other one, Mandala Iki Asian Bistro is on 4th Ave. Unlike the stereotypical sushi houses, Iki offers more diverse menus, authentic dishes, and unique (and daring) creations. They were also one of the pioneering restaurants offering brown rices for their sushi.

Seaweed Salad
Mandala is the little sister of the Japanese one. It is not my favourite, but that's just a personal preference. Instead of specializing in one cuisine, Mandala does the opposite by offering a little bit of everything from every Asian cuisine: Japanese, Chinese, Thai, and Vietnamese. (The menu is not the same!) Do they make all these dishes well? No, they are average or above average, catering to Western palettes.

Veggy Pho
You might be inclined to think that their menu needs a Restaurant Makeover, but I actually enjoy bring wble to have a bowl of healthy pho while Dennis have his sushi rolls.  Their pho is not super oily, salt, and full of MSG, and they even cook the bean sprouts before serving it.  You will find it slightly under flavoured compared to the standard pho.

Like other Iki, this one is understaffed too.  Sometimes, there are only one dude serving the lunch rush, but they still manage to keep the service and the quality of the food pretty consistent.  He just has difficulty checking up on everyone regularly.   However, once I got a hair in my food, and it was not reimbursed.

Mandala IKI Asian Bistro on Urbanspoon
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