It’s not cheap to fly all the way to Japan for a food adventure. Don’t even get us started on the language barrier! But guess what? Japan Food Town will officially open its doors at Wisma Atria, Orchard on the 16th of July 2016! It’s about curating and bringing the best of Japanese food to our sunny shores!
We Singaporeans loveeeeee Japanese food. From takeaway sushi rolls, cook-it-yourself curry rice or the ‘I saved for moths for this piece of Kobe beef’, there’s always an occasion for Japanese food.
Image source: Japan Food Town
But how about authentic Japanese food? How many of us actually had proper artisanal sushi (not machine pressed rice with corn and mayonnaise)?
What is Japan Food Town?
Housing 16 authentic Japanese brands, this 20,075 sq ft Japanese food hall is located on the fourth floor of Wisma Atria. It has a seating capacity of 628 people. Do note that each eatery has its own dining space. It’s not a food court style food town.
50% of the ingredients used and 100% of the establishments featured are imported directly from Japan. You’ll get to savour fresh, healthy and unmistakably authentic Japanese flavours.
The best part? Out of the 16 food outlets, only one – Hokkaido Izakaya, already has a branch in Singapore. In other words, every other brand will be new and refreshing to us Singaporeans! This is definitely as close to Japan as you can get without jet-setting on a 7-hour flight.
Currently, they’ve announced 15 out of 16 eateries and here’s all you need to know about all 15 food outlets before making the trip down to
1. Kurobuta Tonkatsu @Anzu
Known for their deep fried pork cutlet (specifically Japanese black-haired pork, also known as kurobuta) served with homemade sauce, you sure can count on Anzu for your Katsu cravings. Everything is prepared from fresh Kyushu produce. They even grow the vegetables themselves!
2. Onigiri @ Bonta Bonta
Do not underestimate the Rice Balls (onigiri) at Bonta Bonta. Every grain of rice is carefully selected by a ‘Rice Sommelier’ and processed to the highest standards to qualify as Kinmemai – low-calorie brown rice with high nutritional value. Certainly a humble dish prepared with lots of effort and love.
3. Sake @ Dassai Bar
The sake is imported from Yamaguchi exclusively for Japan Food Town. Do also try their Dassai 23, a sake with peach and melon notes. If you’re feeling diplomatic, take on the Sakura Sling, a sake-based cocktail which celebrates the diplomatic relations between Singapore and Japan.
4. Hokkaido Izakaya
Hokkaido’s unique geographical location means access to the best flavours of both worlds – the sea and the land. You’ve heard people rave about their seafood (Hokkaido crab!!) and soba from the Tanjong Pagar branch. How about trying it for yourself at Japan Food Town?
5. Handmade Udon @ Inaniwa Yosuke
Founded in 1860, Sato Yosuke’s Inaniwa udon is an unchanging 150-year-old handmade tradition of Akita craftsmanship and skill. They make a whopping 1.5 tons of Inaniwa Udon noodles every day, all by hand! Every bite you take, every slurp you make, it’s truly artisanal.
6. Personalised Ramen @ Machida Shoten
Ramen Ramen Ramen! Need we say more?? We’d love to let the broth do the talking but what makes Machida Shoten really special is their “Iekei” concept, which translates to noodles that are cooked to the diner’s specified softness or hardness. Personalised Ramen, bring it on!
7. 2 Michelin Star Hotpot @ Nabe Seizan
Feeling under the weather? Maybe a 2 Michelin Star hotpot (nabe) will pick you up. Helmed by Tokyo-born chef, Haruhiko Yamamoto, Seizan strives to bring out the true flavours of each ingredient rather than rely on sauces. Be blown away by this nabe.
8. Premium Teppanyaki & Wagyu @ Osaka Kitchen
Ever wonder what a ‘premium Teppanyaki’ experience is like? Just head to Osaka Kitchen for the finest wagyu on hot stove. While you’re at it, order Okonomiyaki (savoury pancake) and Yakisoba (fried noodle) for a true blue Kansai dining experience.
9. Fried Chicken @ Rang Mang Shokudo
This isn’t just ANY fried chicken. Tokyo’s Rang Mang Shokudo’s fried chicken is marinated in buttermilk for 6 hours. It is then double fried in low heat to bring out the umami, that desirable Japanese flavour. Pair it with their signature frozen lemon cocktail…that’s definitely finger licking good!
10. Mackerel @ Sabar
Sabar is a shop specialising in cuisine revolving around the use of mackerel as the star ingredient. Their goal is to make the word “saba” , which means Mackerel when translated, a universal term like sushi or karaoke. Their shop in Japan only seats 38 and closes at 11:38pm as “38” is Saba in Japanese and 11:38 means good saba (ii saba).
11. Shabu Shabu Tajiyama
Started in 1997, this eatery operated on a simple motto – “good quality food with reasonable price”. Try their beef and vegetable buffet Shabu Shabu or Sukiyaki and you’ll understand the true definition of amazing quality food and reasonable price.
12. Sushi Takewaka from Tsukiji Market
No Japan Food Town is complete without a sushi specialty shop. Sushi Takewaka is here to fill the shoes! Originally from Tsukiji (the super famous fish market), this 28 years old Edo style sushi place only uses good quality fish and seafood, prepared by their skilful chef.
13. Tempura Tsukiji Tenka
Tempura Tsukiji Tenka, a restaurant specialising in Tempura and Donburi, serves the finest tempura dons. It is operated by graduates from Tokyo Sushi Academy, Japan’s top traditional culinary academy. This is the academy that kickstarted the career of some of the finest Japanese chefs in the world.
14. Wagyu Beef @ Yakiniku Heijyoen
At Yakiniku Heijyoen, their beef is treated like fine wine – only top quality black haired wagyu beef from Japan is used. Before the beef even sees the kitchen, it is first aged for tenderness to bring out a deeper concentration of beef taste. Beef lovers, this is a treat you don’t wanna miss.
15. Yomoda Soba
“Yomoda” means many things – carefree, fun, easy going, but most of all, it’s a word used for friends to see things on the lighter side of life. Boasting freshly made soba served with “Yomoda” hospitality at a surprisingly affordable price, this is the kind of place you’d want to visit with your family and friends.
With such a wide range of authentic Japanese food to choose from, which eatery would you like to try out first? You can bet that we’ll be heading down with friends & family. Let’s pen this new food town in our food bucket list!
Japan Food Town
Official opening date: 16 July 2016
Location: 4th Floor, Wisma Atria Shopping Centre, 435 Orchard Rd, 238877
Operating Hours: 11am-11pm daily
Website: Japan Food Town
Facebook: Japan Food Town
Header image source: Pexels
For more Japanese food in Singapore, click here.
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