Restaurant Kuruya Gothenburg: a small and friendly izakaya bar

Kuruya in Gothenburg offers an excellent range of dishes and sakes, with warm and friendly service. Unfortunately, it will no longer exist in this form by the time you read this.

To explain how I ended up at Kuruya, I have to tell you about another restaurant, Saga, which will be the subject of my next article. Saga is a Singaporean restaurant in Gothenburg that has been on my radar for a long time. However, its opening was delayed for a long time due to problems with the building work, and I waited almost a year before having the opportunity to dine there.

When I organised this trip, I realised that it had finally opened and rushed to book a table. And when I made my reservation online, I realised that they had another restaurant in town: Kuruya. I had two evenings to spend in Gothenburg and I liked the concept, so I booked here for my first dinner.

You’ll find a summary of the articles about this trip to Australia at the bottom of the page.

The concept

Kuruya is an izakaya bar, which can be translated as an afterwork bar serving an assortment of dishes and sakes.

During my dinner I had a long chat with the waiter, Jeremy, a very friendly Australian, who explained to me that the context wasn’t really good. It was clear that the concept was struggling to take off, that the economic situation was deteriorating for their target clientele – young working people – and that as a result the restaurant was going to disappear in its current form and revert to what it had been in the past: a sushi bar. Under the name of Koizen if I remember well.

So this article is a kind of posthumous review, but one that is well deserved because I really enjoyed this dinner.

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The setting

The restaurant consists of a very small room with seats at the bar and a few tables around it.

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Small but authentic and friendly.

The Menu

The à la carte menu offers a selection of Japanese dishes with suggested sake pairings.

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It also offers a tasting menu with an assortment of sake, which will be my choice for this evening.

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The meal

I’ll arrive at the time I booked, in the early evening. The customers from the first service are leaving and then I’ll be the only customer for the rest of the evening. I explained why above.

I’m taken care of by the waiter, the very friendly Jeremy, who chats me up for part of the meal. We’ll talk about his country, Australia, which is my final destination, the reasons that led him to settle in Sweden, and he’ll start to introduce me to the different types of sake, how they’re made, how and with what type of dish to enjoy each type. For that reason alone, it was worth coming here for dinner.

Small plate of Otsumami and Tsukemono pickles

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This is an aperitif snack served with sake.

It’s both fresh and a little spicy, perfect for a start.

Sashimi and oyster platter

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There are perch, scallops and salmon. The fish is of very good quality, well cut, with firm flesh.

As for the Pacific oysters served with a ponzu union sauce, it makes a delicious and original sweet and savoury combination.

Small vegetable dish

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Good and fresh, with an original twist: yellow beetroot.

Prawns with basil

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Excellent with chilli mayonnaise.

Udon with pork belly

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Very good and tasty.

Macha cream cake

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Very tasty and light. I’m not usually a fan of macha and I was waiting for this dessert with trepidation, but it was a real treat.

I’ll finish with a hojicha tea, a roasted green tea that I am very fond of.

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Final bill: 98 euros for this excellent dinner. Very reasonable by local standards.

The service

Really excellent, Jeremy took really good care of me and was very educational in the presentation of the dishes and my discovery of the world of sake. What’s more, there was a lot of talk about Australia and Sweden…

The good news is that I think it will still be there in the new configuration of the restaurant.

The atmosphere

The waiter’s conversation was pleasant, but the fact that I was alone in the dining room made it a bit sad.

Bottom line

It’s always a bit sad to write about a restaurant that you’ve enjoyed and that you know has had to close. But on my next trip to Gothenburg I’m going to visit it in its new form, and can only advise you to do the same.

The articles about this trip to Australia

#TypePost
1DiaryPreparing a trip to Australia
2LoungeAir France lounge Roissy 2G
3FlightParis-Gothenburg, Air France, Business Class (Embraer 190)
4HotelDraken, Gothenburg
5RestaurantKuruya, Gothenburg
6RestaurantSaga, Gothenburg
7HotelScandic Landvetter Airport
8LoungeSAS Lounge-Gothenburg (already tested many times, no review)
9FlightGothenburg-Munich, Lufthansa, Business Class (A320)
10LoungeLufthansa Senator Lounge Munich T2 Gates H
11FlightMunich-Tokyo Haneda, ANA, Business Class (B787)
12LoungeAna Lounge, Tokyo Haneda, T2
13FlightTokyo Haneda-Sydney, ANA, Business Class (B787)
14HotelMoxy Sydney Airport, Sydney
15LoungeVirgin Australia Lounge Sydney Domestic T2
16FlightSydney-Adelaide, Virgin Australia, Business Class (B737)
17HotelIntercontinental Adelaide
18RestaurantDaughter In Law, Adelaide
19DiaryVisiting Adelaide
20LoungeVirgin Australia lounge, Adelaide, Domestic
21FlightAdelaide-Melbourne, Virgin Australia, Economy X
22HotelRitz Carlton Melbourne
23RestaurantEntrecote, Melbourne
24RestaurantDelhi Streets, Melbourne
25RestaurantBincho Boss, Melbourne
26HotelW Melbourne
27RestaurantCapitano Carlton, Melbourne
28RestaurantRed Spice Road, Melbourne
29RestaurantYakikami, Melbourne
30RestaurantFreyja, Melbourne
31DiaryVisiting Melbourne
32LoungeVirgin Australia lounge, domestic, Melbourne
33FlightMelbourne-Sydney, Virgin Australia, Economy X
34HotelW Sydney
35RestaurantManta, Sydney
36RestaurantAalia, Sydney
37DiaryVisiting Sydney
38LoungeAir New Zealand lounge, Sydney T1
39LoungeThe House, Sydney T1
40FlightSydney-Tokyo Haneda, ANA, Business Class (B787)
41LoungeAna Lounge, Tokyo Haneda, T2 (already tested on the outward journey, no review)
42FlightTokyo Haneda-Frankfurt, ANA, Business Class (B787)
43LoungeLufthansa Senator Lounge, Frankfurt, T1 Gates A
44FlightFrankfurt-Gothenburg, Lufthansa, Business Class (A321)
45HotelJacy’z, Gothenburg
46LoungeThe Lounge, Goteborg Landvetter
47FlightGothenburg-Paris, Air France, Business Class (Embraer 190)
48DiaryDebriefing my vacation in Australia
Bertrand Duperrin
Bertrand Duperrinhttp://www.duperrin.com
Compulsive traveler, present in the French #avgeek community since the late 2000s and passionate about (long) travel since his youth, Bertrand Duperrin co-founded Travel Guys with Olivier Delestre in March 2015.
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