I had recently seen a few Instagram posts regarding a “new” Japanese-fusion eatery in Mount Pleasant called Mikan Cafe. After reviewing their Facebook Page, I learned that the restaurant was formerly named “Poutinerie Jean-Talon” and had just recently changed their name to “Mikan Cafe” but with the same owner and staff. One interesting fact is that they are the sister restaurant of the popular Cafe de L’Orangerie in Marpole. “Mikan” means orange in Japanese and this seems more on-brand with Cafe de L’Orangerie. However, unlike their sister restaurant, Mikan Cafe seemed to be less well-known; hence, the decision for a name change to be more appealing. A few friends who enjoyed a similar style of food by the now-closed Spaghetei, and I decided to try Mikan Cafe for lunch.
Mikan Cafe Menu
Below are images I took of the menu but the menu is also available online here. On the menu at Mikan Cafe are comfort food offerings (poutine, sandwiches and pasta) melded with Japanese flavours. Prices for entrees range between $8 – $14. They have four types of poutines (Japanese curry sauce, vegetarian gravy, beef stew sauce, with hamburger steak) in three sizes (mini, regular, large). For Japanese flavoured sandwiches, there are tonkatsu (breaded fried pork cutlet) and ebi (breaded fried prawn). They only have spaghetti for pasta and they are prepared with either carbonara sauce, curry with hamburger, Hayashi beef stew with hamburger or masago. The pasta dishes were apparently an addition to the menu with the name change.
For drinks, they have espresso-based beverages, tea, draft beer, wine, juice and pop. Mikan Cafe also has a sweets selection including caramel pudidng, chocolate cheese tart, and blueberry cheese tart.
What We Tried
Our party of three tried the following for lunch:
- Masago Creamy Spaghetti ($10)
- Curry with Hamburger & Creamy Spaghetti ($14)
- Baked Japanese Doria ($9)
- Mini Poutine ($4.50)
The Masago Creamy Spaghetti with squid, mushroom, asparagus, and roe was a hit at our table. All the spaghetti strands were nicely coated with sauce and the mushroom, squid and asparagus were tender. I like the seawood on top for a bit of texture. It was an overall light dish that was neither too savoury nor sweet.
The Curry with Hamburger & Creamy Spaghetti had the spaghetti and curry on their own side of the plate. The Japanese-style curry was flavourful with diced carrots while the hamburger was tender, moist and flavourful.
The Baked Japanese Doira was a baked dish with rice, mushrooms, Japanese curry sauce, chicken broth and topped with mozzarella cheese and eggplant. I liked the cheesy topping but moving down to the rice beneath it tasted a bit bland. I don’t know if it was intended to be a lighter dish but it was certainly light in taste aside from the cheese topping. Nevertheless, having this dish will not render you food comatose in my opinion.
We also enjoyed a mini crispy poutine with a Hayashi beef stew sauce. The cheese curds were tender and the Hayashi beef stew had that nice, umami flavour. Fries were crispy on the edges which was good.
Although we dined-in, it wasn’t full table service as we ordered and paid at the counter. The man staffing the restaurant (maybe the owner?) was friendly and he refilled out water glasses. The food was brought out and dishes were clearly in a timely manner.
Overall Impression of Mikan Cafe
My lunch at Mikan Cafe was enjoyable from start to finish. Friendly and attentive service with tasty food at reasonable prices. I would return again. Rating: 4/5