Hi Genki - Awesome Japanese food in a Seniors home!
Wait... a Japanese restaurant located in a Seniors home? Yes! And an awesome one at that! :D
Don't be turned off by it's unorthodox location, it's known to the locals as one of the best places to have an authentic home cooked Japanese meal in the Highgate area! This location has been open for decades now! My dad even ate here 20 years ago haha, but this was my first time here!
This place is a total hidden gem! It's run by real Japanese people, and the main focus is on Donburi (rice) dishes, not sushi!
They have some pretty killer desserts as well! Deep fried ice cream or banana tempura anyone? :D
I love the unpretentious, homey, cafeteria type setting! Be sure to ask the lady at the counter for a number to be seated!
They're rather busy during meal hours, so be prepared to wait! The food takes a while to come out, which I don't mind, because that means your food is being made to order!
Click on the pictures to enlarge it!
They serve roasted rice tea, which I love! It has a distinct roasted wheat flavour, which is really enjoyable and a nice change from green tea!
Spicy Chicken Kaarage
This is their most popular dish, and it definitely lives up to the hype! Super large pieces of juicy, crispy chicken drizzled with a tantalizing blend of sweet sauces, are you drooling yet? The pieces are nicely battered, moist, and super flavourful! The rice on the bottom soaks up all the sauce that drizzles down from the chicken, making it even more delish!
Pork Katsu Curry
This dish was huge! It's another one of their most popular dishes! The curry is Japanese style curry, which is more mild in flavour with less of a kick. The pork katsu was fragrant and nicely battered. The meat was rather substantial in size and rather lean. They also included some salad on the side, which was actually really fresh!
Aji Fry (Mackerel)
My mom actually wanted to get one of their bento boxes, but they were already sold out for the day! So she settled for the Aji Fry instead! The dish came with 3 large pieces of Mackerel, which was covered with a crispy, flakey batter, different from the Katsu batter. The mackerel itself was rather moist, albeit rather bland tasting. It also came with some salad and rice on the side!
The chicken kaarage and aji fry both came with a side of miso soup! This was actually pretty good! It wasn't watered down, and wasn't excessively seasoned with MSG. The miso flavour was potent with a substantial amount of tofu and seaweed!
I'm a huge sucker for deep fried things (who isn't?) so this was right up my alley haha! Tempura, in dessert form? Yes please! Strange as it may sound, this was actually really tasty! The mushiness of the banana complimented the crispness of the tempura batter very well. The strawberry sauce added an extra layer of sweetness, without distracting from the other components of the dish.
This dish actually comes with ice cream, but I asked for the ice cream on the side because I was suspecting the ice cream would contain modified milk ingredients, which I'm allergic to. My suspicions were confirmed when the ice cream arrived, as it had a chalky like texture, which is one of the telling signs of the presence of modified milk ingredients.
The mint was a nice touch though haha! I also liked how they included some strawberry sauce on the side!
Overall, I definitely recommend Hi Genki for some delicious, authentic homemade goodness! If you're going to get anything, get the Chicken Kaarage haha! I've also heard their deep fried ice cream is awesome! Try it, you won't regret it! :D