Anju Restaurant & Lounge – Calgary, Alberta

Hi everyone. I’d like to thank you all very much for your sweet comments and celebration wishes on my last post. I really appreciate that you not only took the time to drop by and read, but even left such warm comments. You all rock!

I have two very exciting things to talk about today. First of all, I’m sure most of you are familiar with CSN Stores. If not, well let me just say this store sells everything you’re looking for from baking sheets, grills, strollers, pet carriers, and even twin beds! The list goes on and on, but rather than spending a whole post talking about all the things you could buy at such great prices, I figure I’ll just give you the link to CSN Stores so you can see for yourself. Why would you want to take a look? Well let’s just say that they might even be kind enough to offer one of my lucky readers a gift in the near future (wink wink, nudge nudge).

The second exciting bit of news is that during the Canada day long weekend, we took a mini vacation down to Banff, Lake Louise, and Calgary. I know, I know, Canada Day has long passed; so this just shows you how far behind I am on my posts. I still wanted to share this with you though cause any time a mother of two little ones like me gets to get out of the city, it’s pretty dang exciting news to me. So at 6:00 in the morning we loaded up the kiddies, young and old (can’t leave my parents behind ;-)) and drove three and a half hours to Banff.

Free flags and free admission into Banff! Woot Woot!

Another hour drive to Lake Louise:

and another hour to Calgary. Everytime we’re here, we make sure we eat at Anju Restaurant at least once. This is hands down my favorite restaurant in Calgary, and it’s not because we know the owners.

This is a little, cozy, modern Korean restaurant tucked and hidden in downtown Calgary. With a love for food and entertaining, the owners Roy Oh and his wife Anh opened this restaurant in December 2008. Ever since then, they have put their heart and soul into this to turn it into the successful business it is today. As you can see, it is quite modern and nicely decorated. The main floor only has a few tables, I’d say probably 15 tables tops. With such limited seating, it’d be wise to call a day or even 2 days ahead to book your table as they can fill up fast during weekends. I wanted to beat the rush to get some good pictures so I booked for a table of 8 at 6:30. Good thing, because about 15 minutes later, the restaurant started filling up.

There is a bar and lounge area upstairs with welcoming, comfortable couches to sit and chit-chat on, have a few drinks with your buddies,

or take a quick nap on while waiting for your friends to arrive. But I highly DO NOT recommend the nap in case you miss the whole party, as K found out the hard way ;-).

On with the food shall we? We started out with sweet pickled daikons and kimchi.

Spicy grilled eggplant (one of my favorites).

Truffle yam fries with gochugaru aioli.

Dried shredded squid with cho gochujang. (another favorite)

A seafood platter consisting of 6 raw oysters topped with kimchi (I think), chilled mussels, and chilled squid with vegetables.

Kimchi pancake with bacon.

Calamari with Kaffir lime leaf, red onions, and lemongrass aioli.

Korean style chicken wings.

Lamb chops with Korean BBQ sauce and seasonal vegetables.

6 Oz. marinated flank steak with seasonal vegetables.

Stone rice bowl with grilled vegetables, wild mushroom, fried egg, and a choice of beef, chicken, prawns, salmon, or tofu (we chose chicken). This was definitely another one of my favorites, and so pretty too. 

Golden curry prawns, creme fraiche, and cilantro.

Clay pot glazed black cod with gochugaru caramel glaze. I highly recommend this dish. If I had to choose a favorite, this would be it.

Beef rib soup with daikon and leeks.

We were all pretty stuffed and no one had room for dessert, except me of course. Yes, I’m an eating machine. When I saw chestnut creme brulee with savory coconut cream, I was SOLD! This was THE BEST creme brulee I have ever had! It also came decorated with slices of strawberries and gold flakes. If you like chestnut and creme brulee, this is definitely your dessert.

It should also be noted that the menu at Anju changes every couple of months to provide for the freshest ingredients possible. In my mind, that has it’s advantages and disadvantages. So if you’re not sure if your favorite dish will still be on the menu when you return the next time, its best to call and check. With that said, it was another fabulous dinner at Anju Restaurant. This diamond in the rough still remains on the top of my must go to list.With Roy’s killer culinary skills and Anh’s creative mixology skills paired with her great taste in decor, this team is a force to be reckoned with. I also almost forgot to mention that Roy and Anh created every dish and drink on the menu themselves, including my favorite drink called The Bruised Heart, which I highly recommend. I would’ve ordered one, but I was the designated driver that night so I didn’t want to take any chances. Next time you’re in Calgary and looking for a great place to dine, keep Anju Restaurant in mind.

Have you ever visited Canada before? Do you have a favorite Canadian place to visit? Hopefully my next post will include a giveaway from CSN Stores. Until then friends and family.


23 Responses to “Anju Restaurant & Lounge – Calgary, Alberta”

  1. 1 Tanantha @ I Just Love My Apron July 15, 2010 at 5:14 pm

    Great news LeQuan! I can’t wait for your giveaway and I want to be the one who receive it lol j/k

    You’re right we really should dine together! All the food looks so good. I agree the spicy grilled eggplant looks amazing! I’ve only to Vancouver once because of food and Whistler. That’s it. So, I don’t have my fav place yet

  2. 2 Autumn @ Good Eats Girl July 15, 2010 at 8:54 pm

    Wow! All of these eats look amazing!

  3. 3 Ameena July 15, 2010 at 10:49 pm

    This restaurant looks really amazing as does Banff! I would love to go up there one day. The grilled eggplant alone might just be the worth the visit.

    As you know I am a Canadian (still) and I’ve traveled all over, from Montreal to Toronto to Vancouver. I loved Vancouver so much! But I really want to go to one of the ski resorts in western Canada one of these winters. Not because I am a good skier (quite the opposite actually) but because I think it is so gorgeous in winter!

    • 4 luvtoeat July 16, 2010 at 11:44 am

      Hey Ameena!

      I knew you were Canadian but I actually never knew you were (still) Canadian, super cool. Not saying that Canadians are more cool than Americans. Ok whatever, I’ll just shut up before I get myself in trouble.

      Vancouver is definitely my favorite place for eats in Canada. TO is up there too but we visit Vancouver more.

      I think you would love visiting the mountains here in winter (other than the cold of course). They are truly an unforgetable experience, and I don’t mean by frostbite either…teehee. Make sure you do bundle up though.

  4. 5 Twins July 15, 2010 at 10:50 pm

    wow … the food at Anju looks amazing! Anh must be the luckiest girl to have a husband that can cook all these gourmet dishes and still manage to stay skinny!

    I really want to try the chestnut creme brulee and the Cod dish … it looks so yummy!!!!!

  5. 6 serena July 16, 2010 at 4:34 am

    looking at your dinner, it’s no wonder you make it out to Anju whenever you go to Calgary!

  6. 7 thehungryscholar July 16, 2010 at 8:40 am

    I need to go to Canada now. That looks so good. I went to Canada for the Soccer Peace Games when I was little. Our soccer team got our butt kicked, but I had some awesome crepes.

  7. 9 Stella July 16, 2010 at 2:21 pm

    LeQuan, when I read the part about K missing out on the action ‘the hard way’ as you described it and saw her little figure on that sofa, I just started cracking up. I remember falling asleep in some weird place like that after a day of fun excitement with my family. I would, of course, wake up after missing more festivities and be so ticked (smile). Too funny…
    That restaurant looks good too. I love the idea of a kimchi pancake. That sounds kind of delicious. I like kimchi though, so it always sounds nice to me. Oh, and that bowl of different treats is pretty. I make bowls like that all the time. I should probably take pictures and post it-maybe???
    Okay, well I hope you guys have a great weekend, LeQuan. Tell ‘k’ I said that she’s too cute!

  8. 10 MaryMoh July 17, 2010 at 1:40 am

    What great family outing! Looks like so much fun. Korean food is one of my top favourite. I’m drooling over every every dish….mmmm

  9. 11 denise @ quickies on the dinner table July 17, 2010 at 7:30 pm

    Woweeeeeee!! So much food and everything looks amazing!! I would’ve driven 3 +++ hours too! I wouldn’t have known where to begin eating though!!! I like the beef rib soup, the black cod and the calamari with kaffir lime best, I think LOL

    Poor little K – she must have been exhausted. Hope she didn’t miss too much!

    I would never skip dessert either – greedy guts, that’s me 😉

  10. 13 Samantha @ The Savvy Soybean July 18, 2010 at 12:56 pm

    That grilled eggplant looks amazing! I have yet to explore Korean cuisine… It all looks very delicious!

  11. 14 Lazaro July 18, 2010 at 2:09 pm

    Man what a spread! Love the dried squid and the Korean wings looks amazing. That would be a tour of food I’d love to be on. Great photos.

  12. 15 aletheiazoe July 18, 2010 at 6:40 pm

    Hey, congratulations on being contacted by CSN Stores! 🙂 Your Canada Day looks splendid. I jumped up and down when I saw that you guys went to Lake Louise. I have almost the EXACT same family shot (when my family went down a couple of years ago) — complete with almost the same outfits! Ie. track suits / other sporty wear (mainly my brother and my Dad and me. Mom = not so much.)

    Proof #1:

    Proof #2:

    Awesome, ehhhhh? (An unplanned Canada Day…pun? It’s not very witty at all, but I just felt like saying eh. Eh. Eh eh eh.)

    Anju Restaurant looks STELLAR. Especially the eggplant. Yum! And your photos look better and better every post. I think your skillz are improving, my dear. 🙂

    xo Aletheia

    • 16 lequan@luvtoeat July 18, 2010 at 10:58 pm

      Omg, LOL about those pics! No, I’m not laughing at your pics, but at how similar our pics look – too funny! Thanks for sharing girl! I love the second picture with you and your parents. You can absolutely tell how loving your family is. Your Mom holding onto your Dad’s arm and your Dad wrapping his hand around your shoulder. Love the closeness. Totally awesome!!!

      And I love using “eh?”. Hope you had a super great weekend my friend! HUGS!

  13. 17 DessertDarling July 18, 2010 at 8:46 pm

    Wow- First of all, CONGRATS on your anniversary!!!! What a BEAUTIFUL family you have!!! I also love the heart you made out of a fig in that last post 🙂
    Secondly, I went to Banff with my family in high school and will never forget how absolutely gorgeous Lake Louise is. Canada is great country with the nicest people 🙂

    As for sodas…Just try to drink the natural ones with real sugar and no artificial colors and stuff! 😉

  14. 19 Jessie July 19, 2010 at 5:56 am

    Haha, I love your side comments that are just so darn funny. Collecting kids young and old, and K conked out on the sofa – could she be any cuter? I remember conking out exactly like that when I was little. My dad must have hauled me around more times than he can count (or would care to remember).

    Banff and Lake Louise look beautiful! I’ve never been – in fact, the only place I’ve ever been in Canada is Toronto. There are so many gorgeous places in Canada that I’d like to get to someday. Including Edmonton! 🙂 I’m drooling over the food at Anju. I ate my first Korean clay pot meal in Beijing and I’m still thinking about that delicious meal. And kimchi for the first time! Ok, I need breakfast 🙂 Have a lovely day, Leeqs!

  15. 20 July 19, 2010 at 11:16 am

    im always impressed with Calgary because of how many health food cafes, restaurants, and stores have been popping up! Whenever I travel to Sask. and my plane stops in Calgary im anxious to tour the city. I havent been back in awhile but this really makes me wanna go! and the hot springs would be an added bonus!!


  16. 21 Juliana July 19, 2010 at 11:55 am

    Absolutely lovely picture of the family…and the Korean food looks yummie! I love the little dishes with the “appetizers” 🙂

  17. 22 Anju July 20, 2010 at 1:03 am

    Love the pics from Anju, LeQuan. Maybe it’s time for me to pay another visit, hehe. I love the cod and the beef rib soup. I’m glad the soup is back on the menu, Anh! Bah, it’s 1 AM and now I am hungry! Btw, did you eat a chicken wing before you took a picture? lol.

  18. 23 A Canadian Foodie August 7, 2010 at 4:04 am

    That food looks deadly delicious. I would not have a clue what to order there and clearly, a crowd is the way to go!

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