K and I have been meaning to try the tapas at Cerezo since our last visit. Well, we were out and about one Thursday evening and finally decided to come. It was pretty quiet that evening with two other tables, and everyone seemed to be having a great time. I love how cozy and warm the atmosphere is and they’re even kid-friendly!
Here’s what we tried tonight:
Beet & Goat Cheese Salad – $7
mix green with our homemade dressing, beet, goat cheese
This might be my favorite salad to date. It was so tasty that our neighbors at the next table ordered one right away as soon as they saw ours. You get a generous amount of spring mix, topped with sweet, tender red beets and an abundance of goat cheese. Whatever their homemade dressing was was absolutely tasty. I taste a bit of yuzu in it so the salad very refreshing and it opened up our appetites immensely.
Hotate-Enoki – $15
seared scallop and enoki mushroom with original sauce
Pan seared scallops and enoki basking in a sweet sauce, paired with more spring mix. The scallops are on the thin side but was properly cooked. The enoki seems to be just lightly boiled. K said she wishes we had noodles or something to mop up the rest of the sauce just so it wouldn’t go to waste!
Toro Sashi – $15
belly of albacore tuna sashimi, truffle oil soy sauce
After tasting this, I vow to bring a bottle of truffle oil to every sushi restaurant I go to. I mean, I never even thought of ever adding truffle oil to soy sauce so the chefs at Cerezo are geniuses. Perhaps they mixed something else into the soy sauce as well b/c it didn’t taste like the regular stuff anyway – it was slightly sweet, salty and with very pungent truffle flavors. Hmmmmmm. The toro has been very lightly seared and then sliced very thinly, and the texture was smooth, buttery, oily, creamy… I wish K hated it so I could’ve ate the whole plate by myself. The red smear around the plate seems to be some type of jam.
Ton-Toro – $12
BBQ pork jowl with original sauce
This might’ve been the only dish that I was disappointed with. Not that the dish didn’t taste well or anything, but with the word toro as the menu item the texture should be near melt-in-your-mouth. For example, this is a torotoro chashu I had at Suika in Vancouver. It was delectable, melt-in-your-mouth fatty pork belly. The one here at Cerezo is pork jowl, which is meat I have cooked with before but the texture here is a bit dry and not as fatty as I was expecting it to be. The marinade had a light salt taste to it and it tasted good; had this been labelled as regular pork pieces and not toro I would’ve enjoyed it more.
Homemade Potato Salad
As our server placed this dish down, she told us that there is potato salad underneath the slice of lettuce and she personally made it! The texture is very creamy and the texture resembles puree. It had great mayo and egg flavors and I do like the taste of it, but would prefer it to be less blended.
Sukiyaki Beef with Egg – $15
thinly and lightly grilled beef with original sauce marinade, soft boiled egg
Ultra tender beef slices cooked to about medium basking in a sweet sauce. The beef was buttery smooth and nearly melted in our mouths! I really like their sauce and wonder what’s in it, but I’m sure it’s their secret recipe anyway. We broke the egg and let the yolk flow allover… it made everything creamy and even more delectable. I’d say that you need to eat this with a bowl of rice.
Nasu – $7
soy sauce braised eggplant
At this point we were deciding if we want dessert or more food. If you can believe it, dessert didn’t win. As we both love eggplant, we decided to give their version a try. I really like the neat presentation – thick eggplant strips topped with grated daikon and sprinkled with strands of negi allover. The eggplant itself was quite salty from the soy sauce but the daikon will neutralize so it’s best to eat everything together.
Chicken Karaage – $7
crispy chicken with original sauce marinade
I wanted more protein and settled for this. Lightly battered and fried chicken dark meat in a dashi-like marinade. We were wondering why there was no dipping sauce served with this but after tasting the meat we realized it wasn’t needed.
Carrot Cake – $4.95
This isn’t ours, nor did we taste it. Our neighbors at the next table ordered it and offered to let us take a picture of it when she learned that we were both food bloggers. The coolest thing was when I told her my blog name and who I was on Urbanspoon, she said she recognizes my name and have been to restaurants based on my pictures! Woot – I was definitely a bit giddy from that incident 🙂 #almostfamous
Service was friendly, polite and efficient. Prices are pretty average and fair for the quality of food and you can taste that everything is made with love and care. I like how their menu changes from time to time and everything is made from scratch with the best ingredients available. Cerezo is definitely a place I would return to over and over again.