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“An explosion of flavour at Anju”
Review of Anju Restaurant

Anju Restaurant
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Ranked #41 of 3,757 Restaurants in Calgary
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: US$16 - US$47
Cuisines: Asian, Korean
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Restaurant details
Dining options: After-hours, Reservations
Neighbourhood: Mission
Description: Korean inspired tapas, meant to be shared among friends and eaten with alcohol.
Reviewed 21 December 2012

Having never been here before, we weren't quite sure what to expect. Korean isn't something we eat a lot of. Having said that, Anju made us fans of Korean.

Started with cocktails. The "Rebel" is made of 2 oz Soju (Korean Rice Vodka), Pomegranate Liqueur, Rum, lime, soda and Thai Basil. Not too sweet. Perfect start.

Being unfamiliar with the menu and ingredients, we went with the Anju Sampler (full table participation required for this) and it was worth it. Started with spicy salmon tacos then on to korean fried chicken wings in three flavours: gochujang, teriyaki and salt & szechuan pepper. Main course of kimchi jambalaya, silver sage oxtail tortellini, braised silver sage beef short ribs and brussel sprouts with sweet pork belly. There is nothing that I wouldn't have again. Everything was excellent.

Anju Sampler includes their own Ice Creams on a stick (mango, strawberry, etc) which are amazing. We also upgraded for a small premium to the Black Sesame Creme Brulee with Chantilly Cream. Glad we did. This is a signature dessert.

Service was a little hit-and-miss for a Wednesday night but the food made up for it. Luckily, we were with another couple which allowed more conversation since we were in no hurry. (Dining time in-restaurant for us was 2.5 hours).

Parking is not mentioned on the web site but there is a vacant lot across the road that many cars park in. On-street parking is limited.

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1  Thank AttitudeGuy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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206 - 210 of 214 reviews

Reviewed 14 July 2012

Read the reviews and magazine articles and made sure this place was on my list when we visited Calgary last week. I love the notion of someone (not a trained chef) opening a restaurant and cooking his mother's recipes from his heart.

Perhaps we didn't order the right things. But it started off so well - we had kimchi Caesars (interesting texture with the bits of cabbage being sucked up in your straw, but good!) and then the banchan plate - traditional kimchi, cucumber kimchi, plus the *phenomenal* anchovies! Wow - I've traveled Asia widely but these were the tastiest little fishies ever =) The panko breaded tofu was mediocre - over cooked, which led to a hard crumbly center when it should have been smooth and quivery.

Then we had the bap (stone rice bowl) with spicy pulled pork. Contrary to other reviews I've read, the rice is NOT "overcooked" - it's actually supposed to get hard and brown and crispy against the side of the stone bowl so you can enjoy that chewy/crunchy texture and aroma. Anyway, it was aesthetically pleasing and looked wonderful, but the taste wasn't there - perhaps more seasoning was needed? It was sort of bland and dry compared to other bi bim baps I've had. It was served with their signature gochujang sauce on the side, but I would've liked a more savoury/salty soy-based sauce. Plus, the gochujang sauce was very hard to pour from the glass jug - the type usually used for pancake syrup. We also ordered their 'signature' large chicken wings (half gochujang, half serrano soy) but found them overfried and over battered...very dry and hard to eat.

Decor is a bit shabby and nondescript but understandable for a start-up restaurant. Service was good - the young lady was very capable and had a solid grasp of all the dishes, assisted a bit by (I think) the chef's wife. All in all, I was a bit disappointed but my boyfriend (who travels regularly to Calgary for business) said it was a solid Asian restaurant in a city dominated by red meat steakhouses. He will be back to try more of the menu!

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1  Thank HoneyGirl88
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 February 2012

Went here tonight for din with my BFF and the expectations were high based on what we've heard; and it lived up to everything we imagined and then some. The kimchi grilled cheese WAS amazing. As were the shrimp tempura and oxtail. I seriously want to come back here again and again...what a unique take on Korean food.

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3  Thank esg772016
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 August 2011

I've eaten at Anju at least 10 times. This is one of Calgary's most unique restaurants in a renovated old house in the city centre. The menu is adventurous and the dishes (smaller dishes that are meant to be shared) are extremely tasty! It's a great place to take a friend or a date. The restaurant is on the first floor and the lounge is on the second floor (yes, you can order dinner in the lounge). The service is fun, friendly and very good. The only part that needs improvement is the decor.

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Thank Live_Life_Big
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 January 2017
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    • Value
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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