The entrance to Guu Izakaya may not be immediately obvious, but once you spot the crowd lining up outside you’ll know you’re in the right place. This is not a spot for a quiet dinner. Lively and welcoming, this traditional Japanese post-work pub is filled with loud laughter, exuberant shouts in Japanese, and the clinking of pint glasses from the time the clock strikes five every evening, so it’s probably best for a night out with friends in Toronto. While you’ll probably lure your pals in with stories of the delicious Japanese beers on offer, you’ll stick around later than you planned thanks to an extensive menu of small plates perfect for sharing. So take a seat at one of the long wooden tables and raise a toast with a hearty “Kampai!” Then, egg each other on to order the most adventurous items on the menu. The standards are all here, but when was the last time you had sea urchin or deep fried octopus? And if you really want to see your friends squirm (of course you do) dare them to take their first bite of natto. The fermented soybeans–and their pungent aroma–are definitely an acquired taste. Just be sure to save some room for the green tea cheesecake to polish off the meal. Unlike those soybeans, it’s always love at first bite.