Moguri is the Japanese name for a speakeasy. It perfectly describes the vibe of the hidden bar made from what used to be a boiler room underneath the Izakaya Ronin. Fun at the Moguri would usually start on Tuesdays through Saturdays at around 10 pm to around 1:30 am or after depending on the level of activity. During this time, you could indulge in different assortments of drinks such as Japanese whiskey, cocktails, and sake. The late-night menu was designed to go with a delicious bowl of ramen, fried finger food, dumplings skewers, and some drinks.
There were two exciting things in the Moguri. The First was Izakaya’s amazing ramen, which could as well be the best in Denver, given that Corey Baker had won in a Ramen contest. The second was the incredible selection of Japanese whiskey. The collection was so unbelievable that some drinks such as Yamazaki Sherry Cask Whiskey cost $350 per shot. The restaurant was only allowed to import one bottle of a particular liquor per year. This restriction limited the supply of some drinks and was responsible for the astronomical price tags of rare bottles. Some of the Japanese Whiskeys available included Regular, Single Malt, and Sherry Cask Akashi; 12 and 18-year-old Hakushu; 12, 17, and 21-year-old Hibiki; Hibiki Harmony; Malt & grain and Malt The Single Cask Ichiro; Regular, Tradition, Tradition Wine Cask, and Komagatake Iwai; Pure Malt and Coffey Grain Nikka; Toki; Yamazaki Mizunara Cask and Sherry Cask, as well as 12 and 18-year-old Yamazaki’s. Although Japanese whiskey included the most popular drinks in the restaurant, there was also a selection of different Japanese beers, wines, and cocktails.
Izakaya’s subterranean moguri, whose Japanese name loosely translates to “hidden tavern” in English, provided a completely distinctive experience from that of dining in the room of the main restaurant. Moguri featured what you would expect to find in a Japanese food pub, that is, different assortments of small plates, several soups including the Lomon Tonkotsu Ramen, vegetables on skewers, and grilled meat.
Tsukemono was one of the popular meal-starters at the restaurant. The $5 dish was a set of pickled vegetables with subtle tangy and tart flavors. The well-executed assortment of veggies consisted of Japanese cucumbers, shibazuke (chopped eggplants and cucumbers), and taikuan (daikon pickle). You could then follow up with the $6 deep-fried Age Gyoza, which consisted of a communal plate of crispy dumplings and a juicy center. Ika Gesso Age was another popular appetizer at the restaurant. Going for $6, it was the Japanese equivalent of calamari and consisted of a flavourful dipping sauce and fried squid legs.