We trekked to Markham the other day for a taste of donburi, a Japanese rice bowl that's topped with meat, fish, or vegetables. Donburi in Markham is a restaurant that specializes in the dish, and a whole host of other izakaya-style dishes as well.

Stanley, one of the owners, is the creative mind behind many of the dishes. At his recommendation, we had a couple of donburi bowls - the fried fish in curry sauce, and the classic beef sautéed with onions.

I was there with the crew from 6ixspots, and one of them said that if they had to pick a last meal on earth, the beef bowl was a serious contender. I personally loved the crispy fried fish swimming in the yellow curry sauce (pun intended) - the sauce was slightly sweet with some kick from curry spices.

The rice bowls were delicious, and the izakaya-style small dishes also blew us away. We had the miso cod, which had been marinating for 5 days; and it was so good that my brain slightly short-circuited when I tried it. Then there were the beef ribs, which had also been marinating for 5 days, and turned out sweet, juicy, tender and fatty.

Even the seaweed salad was solid, as was the fried chicken, gyoza, deep-fried mussels, and a matcha crème brulee for dessert. My table-mates had the matcha beer (which they described as a confusing mix of flavours, but one that they actually liked), and Stanley made me a delicious Japanese fizzy drink of coconut juice, ramune (lemon-lime soda), and sprite.

Stanley is the consummate host, and him and his family, which runs the place with him, are clearly passionate about the food they serve. This is some of the best Japanese food I've had in the GTA, and is even if its a long way to Markham, this restaurant is worth going out of the way for.

Donburi 505 Highway 7 East, 905.597.6505