There’s a new kid on the Japanese foodie block. But watch out, this one comes with some fun twists and turns. Located on an unlikely block in Montreal’s downtown core (seems like this is a trendy thing), Biiru Japanese Bistro is making its mark in more ways than one. Think epic sake bar, gaming joysticks in bathrooms, Japanese pancakes, music mixes that will sway you away all night and a #selfie-free zone. That’s just a few things on the menu here, and to get a little more insight we caught up with Co-Owner Yann Levy, the most humble giant you might come across, to fill us in on this new endeavour:
Let’s start with the team. Who is behind Biiru?
Myself and DJ YO-C.
How did you guys come together?
We are very good friends and through my many travels to Japan and having fallen in love with it, I convinced him to jump on board this journey with me!
There seems to be a lot of Japanimation themes in the space…
Absolutely! It’s a real mix of vintage, traditional and contemporary… think manga plastic masks in the entrance, origami birds in a vintage cages, modern/hipster murals, 1920 matchboxes printed and framed and even a Japanese art piece flag from 1947.
Where did the design ideas come from?
From my travels to Japan and love of Japanese art and art in general. I always believed it’s great to add your own, cool touch where you can.
What sort of vibe do you want people to feel when they are here?
Definitely unpretentious and cozy. We want to accommodate everybody who wants to have good food and fun in a chill place!
Let’s talk food. What can we expect and who is behind the menu?
The menu is quite diverse. We have everything from traditional Japanese items such as gyoza to street style food like karaage, a.k.a. fried chicken and japadogs. We also wanted to add a twist to some items so we created dishes like the okonomiyaki, which is a Japanese pancake with mushroom and truffle oil, or the ramen with foie gras. Basically the goal was to take the basis of a traditional Japanese menu and push it out of its comfort zone a little.
There seems to be a wave of Asian-inspired spots popping up. What do you think differentiates you?
Asian is very wide term, but I get what you are saying. I think what differentiates us is our twisted menu and our appreciation of Japanese culture and art.
Anything special coming up that we should expect from Biiru?
Yes! We have a beautiful terrace that will be launching in the summer and our full menu is almost ready as well.
Biiru is open Tuesday to Saturday for lunch and dinner at 1433 City Councillors. Visit them here for more info.
#LYNL | (Live Your Notable Life)
Food Images by: Karolina Jez
Interior Shots: Biiru
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