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I love izakayas.  I make it a personal mission to try to eat at all of them.  Back in the city, there are very few izakayas.  Most of them tend to be located either in the South Bay or the Peninsula area.  I had heard that Ajito was as good as my absolute favorite izakaya Sumika (see post HERE) so I had to try it out for myself.

I can always appreciate good fried chicken cartilage.  Two different types of crunchiness.  One from the deep fried batter and one from the actual cartilage.  Not bad, but I've had better.  Some of the pieces were extremely hard and inedible.   

The beef tongue was probably the best dish of the meal.  Thin slices of beef marinated with a sauce that reminded of a Chinese stir fry sauce.  The texture was more beef like than tongue like, but it was super tender and juicy.

Had I know that the black pig sausage looked like Vienna sausages I probably wouldn't have ordered it.  Not only did they look like them, but they sort of tasted like them too.  Rubbery.  It didn't have the deep porky, fatty flavor of black pork.

Normally, I don't order oyako don, but I've had it at Sumika and it is fantastic there.  Most of the dishes here were disappointing so this simple chicken, egg, and rice dish turned out to be another satisfactory item.

Many people seemed to have raved about this grilled squid dish.  Personally, I've had better.  The squid is too salty here and it doesn't have that tenderness when biting into the rings.

Often izakayas either excel at the skewered dishes or the small dishes.  Since this one didn't seem to have the wow factor in the small dishes, I was really hoping that their skewers would win my tummy over.  The chicken breast was dry and flavorless.  Not even close to the juiciness and yumminess that Sumika's chicken has.

For some reason, chicken skin (kawa) was not on the menu, but upon asking the server, she said they had it available.  Winner!   Not!  The chicken skin was not cooked properly at all.  It didn't have any crispy, crackly bits.  No smokiness at all. 
I always like to eat yaki onigiri in my meals when available.  I just love the way the grilling of the rice makes a crispy crust.  At Ajito, its not bad.  It could be a little more crispy though.  The bottom of the rice ball was a bit soggy.  Overall, I have to say, this place is not at all like Sumika.  Its not even in the same league. 

Address:                   Ajito
                                  7335 Bollinger Rd.
                                   Ste A
                                   Cupertino, CA
Type:                          Japanese

Popular chomps:         black pork sausage
                                    chicken cartilage
                                    beef tongue

Chomp worthy:           beef tongue   

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