Miura Waffle + Milk Bar has just moved to its new Main & Broadway digs and they kindly hosted a pre-launch tasting event for the folks who had written about them in the past. Wendy reviewed the old downtown location a while back, so we got an invite and figured this time I could give a second opinion on the place. We got to sample literally every food item on the menu plus a few new drinks!
The newly reno’d interior was clean and sported bar and table seating with a view of the kitchen in the back. Now for a word about the “yoggys” and “sandos” on offer here: this ain’t your momma’s waffle shack. Miura’s motto is “NO FORK & KNIFE, NO SYRUP”. They make waffle sandwiches here, both savoury and sweet, and sando is short for sandowicchi (the Japanese pronunciation of sandwich), and are meant to be eaten with your hands. Yoggys are yogurt-y milk drinks which are slightly thicker and tangier than regular milk.
First we tried some items from the Miura Shake menu. These are all new items launched with the location change. Clockwise from top left are the G8, Corny, and two Cara-Misos. The G8 (stands for 8-grain) is the health-conscious one of the group with a blend of red, green, and mung beans, brown and black rice, and wheat berries plus a couple more we forgot. It definitely tastes healthy with a kind of rice-y malt flavour. If you can imagine a drink version of Sugar Crisp cereal you’ve hit the nail on the head. The Corny is sweet corn with vanilla ice cream, and the Cara-Miso is Miura’s fusion take on classic salted caramel treats, but they combine their house-made caramel sauce with red miso (?!) for the salted portion. Trust us, it tastes like HEAVEN and was the star player here. These were sample sizes with the standard 16 oz. versions going for $6.49.
We snacked on some deep-fried nori chips to start. Wendy buys snack packs of nori to eat at home and I usually find them way too salty so this was probably the best version I’ve had, being that it was lightly salted. These don’t appear on the menu yet from what I can see so I’m not sure if they’ll be continuing with them. If they do we think they could improve them a bit by offering a powder seasoning shaker (Wendy suggests Shichimi) or maybe adding a drizzle of wasabi aioli or something to make things interesting.
Update from Miura: They ARE on the new menu. And furthermore, they have a plan to serve them “chips and dip” style with either wasabi ranch or Thousand Island dipping sauce! Plus…and this is getting into serious ESP territory (I swear Wendy has a knack for this although she would deny it), they will be at the Richmond night market this summer selling flavoured nori chips, including shichimi!!
On to the Sandos! The sole new food item is the Kachan Karaagewhich is Miura’s take on the soul food staple of chicken and waffles. This version incorporates roasted garlic and miso marinated chicken, cabbage slaw and a sweet thousand island type dressing. Keep in mind that the waffles are also tasting sizes; the standard size is double what is pictured above and costs $8.99 for the savoury sandos. I’d have to say the karaage is the best deal as it seems to offer a lot of meat compared to the other savouries, which have the meat baked into the batter.
This one is the *#1 Savoury Sando. This Korean-style waffle comes loaded with bulgogi beef, kimchi, and egg sauce. True to it’s name this was Wendy’s absolute fave.
This is the Wasabi Salmon, comprised of salmon, lettuce and wasabi ranch sauce. Wendy makes a mean wasabi salmon at home so I can’t beat her version, and we found the wasabi flavour to be a bit too low in the mix. I only got a taste of it in the first and last bite and would have appreciated a bigger kick. Still good though.
This one was my second fave, the Viet-style Hoisin. Wendy had this on her last trip too and enjoyed it both times. It comes with hoisin pork sausage baked in, along with banh mi style toppings like pickled veggies and cilantro.
Oh wait, I forgot about the Veggie! Can this one be a tie for second place? It’s listed on the menu as a seasonal creation, and in this case it had spinach and tomato paste ground up into a pesto-like concoction with cucumber and Provolone cheese. We both really liked the Italian-style flavours in this waffle sandwich.
On to the dessert now, we started with the *#1 Sweet Sando. This waffle sandwich is made with whipped cream and their home-made custard cream combined with seasonal fruits. They’re not kidding about the seasonal part; this one was made with cranberries. Sweet and tart and yummy.
Banana Caramel was exactly what the name implies but with the addition of the ubiquitous whipped cream. Even better than the first one…
…but they saved the best for last. You’d think waffle-fatigue would be setting in by now but after tasting the first bite of this Teri-Vani creation I wolfed the rest down in a matter of seconds. I must have looked like a total pig but I couldn’t resist…I love salty sweet and this odd sounding blend of teriyaki sauce and vanilla ice cream (plus the whipped cream, natch) had me falling head over heels! The full-size versions from the sweet menu will run you $6.99
Wendy was impressed with the pleasant service on visit #1 and we can happily report that all the staff (including the super-nice owner) were still upbeat and friendly. The only kind of sad note (for Wendy anyway) was the loss of the Tiramisu sando she loved so much, but the good news is they may tweak the menu a bit after they settle in so it might be brought back at some point. By the way, Miura was recently featured in Season 2 of Food Network’s “You Gotta Eat Here” and that’s our final thought too: you gotta try it!