Black Bear specializes in Japanese fusion cuisine. It sits in a Markham strip plaza where Sushi on 7 used to be.
The inside is basic with a smattering of wood tables, murals on the wall and mostly track lighting.
The thing to start with here is the K-Pop Chicken ($10). It's battered tender chicken cuts fried and served in skewers with dipping sauces. Try the spicy and sweet gochujang dip to really make the whole thing click.
The Japanese Fusion Fries ($10) come coated with a drizzle of miso-infused mayonnaise. The slightly battered fries are perfectly crisp but the overall flavours are a little mentaiko-heavy for my tastes.
Much more interesting is the Creamy Mentaiko Omelet Rice ($14), which is essentially a take on Japanese omurice. The creamy rich mentaiko-infused sauce coats the tender shrimps just right.
The Udon Carbonara ($13) comes with bacon, mushrooms and cream sauce mixed with chewy Japanese udon. Bacon lovers will want to order this.
The Chicken Katsu Curry Rice Burger ($14) is juicy chicken served between two dense pan-fried rice patties. I kind of feel this would have worked better using traditional buns.
A better option is the Soft Shell Crab Burger ($14). It's equal parts crunchy and tender and served with spicy tartar that makes the whole thing click. Just be prepared for a messy meal when you get one of these.
To drink, there's the Passionate Star ($9.50) which is basically an upside-down Stella mixed with passion fruit juice.
There's also a virgin Mango Paradise ($6.50), a fruity mix of mango, passion fruit, Yakult, and soda.
My favourite might be the velvety smooth and rich Purple Sweet Potato Milkshake ($8). It's a sweet ube milkshake with whipped cream.
For dessert, go for the Pineapple Creme Brulee ($11) served in a hollowed pineapple fruit bowl. There's something about combining the sweetness of pineapple with caramel that simply makes the dish sing.
Or, the Matcha and Red Bean Panna Cotta ($8) would also be a light and satisfying cap to your meal.