What brought us to Rajio, a humble izakaya reminiscent of a street joint out of Tokyo, was a dining pass, Rockin' Rajio, we snagged from VanEats. For $18, we were presented with 4 delicious courses. They include Kushikatsu set which, for a deep fry lover, it was totally up my ally. There were 6 skewers; 2 scallops, 2 lotus roots, and 2 chicken(I'm pretty sure). What made this set extra awesome was the vast array of sauces they brought along. Yes!! Somebody recognizes that sauces are essential. My favorite was probably the teriyaki yuzu sauce I bathed the skewers with. It had a refreshing oomph. This set was great for sharing, it would've been too filling for 1 person to finish on their own.
Up next was the mini carpaccio with chef's selection of 3 kinds of sashimi. I thought the portion was larger than to be called a mini and that's definitely not a complaint. The sashimi had generous amount of refreshing and citrusy dressing as well and crisp textures of various components. The daily selection of cold tapas was scallops and daikon in a savoury, oden-like broth.
We were curious what else Rajio has to offer so we ordered a couple items from the regular menu. Aburi toro was a must try for us and I was happy we ordered it. The toro had the right amount of char. We didn't need to taint it with soy sauce as they already prepared it with a thicker, sweeter glaze with a hint of shiso in the middle. All I have to say is "later, Minami"
How could we pass off a bowl of negitoro and ikura when it looked like that and only cost $8.80? Beautiful to look at, and a fresh, meaty mouthful.
The other dishes were yaki udon Von gole and diablo chicken. Sadly, I didn't get to take pictures of the last 2 (impatience and anxiety don't mix). The yaki udon was buttery with the right amount of seasoning. It was my first time trying it with udon noodles instead of spaghetti and they pulled it off.
Diablo chicken was more than just karaage. It came with a dipping sauce that was supposedly hotter than hell itself. Well, I'm Thai so it was more of a walk in the park on a breezy day. Adding the hot sauce with tartare sauce though, I tell ya, order a glass of beer and you'll have yourself a good night. The chicken was pretty juicy, but there were some parts that had too much batter or fat.
I'm definitely coming back to Rajio with another dining pass, thanks again to VanEats. There are also other dishes worth coming back for and more on the menu to be explored. Prompt service, great execution on the food, reasonable price, great portions. $8 sake?! Need I go on??! It's hard not to return!