I don’t think that there are official ‘sides’ to the Udon VS. Ramen argument. If it is even an argument in the first place. But if I had to pick sides, I’m a Ramen fan.
There’s just something about thin yellow noodles that seems so much more appealing than the thick strand of udon. Udon just seems so…much.
Looking at Udon makes me feel like it’s going to be jelak before I even order.
So this weekend, I did something (relatively) brave. My Udon-loving friend found a particular Udon restaurant in Wisma Atria and she wanted to try it.
So off we went on a lazy Sunday afternoon for Udon.
A Hidden Gem
Hidden in plain sight on Level 4 of Wisma Atria, next to FoodRepublic, is the Japan Food Town. If you think this is another “Shokutsu Ten” at Nex or Jurong Point, you’re wrong.
The restaurants here are next level. Deep within the Japan Food Town was our destination, Inaniwa Yosuke.
The restaurant looked unassuming. Like a run-of-the-mill Japanese restaurant with limited seating and fancy-ish decor.
I went in with a sense of trepidation because I’m a person of habit and tend to stick to what’s familiar and good. I’m really not an udon person.
I ordered the Beef Udon ($16.80) because that was the most familiar flavour besides the Carbonara Udon that was sadly, out of stock. My friend ordered the Wagyu Steak Don Set ($24.80) as well as the Agedashi Tofu ($6.80) and Salmon Sashimi ($10.80) to share.
The first dish to arrive was the Agedashi Tofu. Four large pieces of perfectly tempura fried tofu sitting in a light soy sauce.
This was a delight to eat. The biggest gripe I have with Agedashi Tofu is that their batter becomes soggy very quickly but this one was soft yet crispy with its delicate batter and the soy sauce was not too salty. Basically, AMAZING.
Next was the Salmon Sashimi and each piece was fresh and sliced thick.
Now for the mains. Let’s start with the Beef Udon. I wasn’t expecting anything good but I was genuinely surprised. A quick glance at the broth – dark but clear like a bowl of watered down superior soy sauce, which was also how it tasted.
Not that it’s a bad thing, but the broth was definitely better than I expected. Next, the udon noodles.
The udon noodles here are thinner than the usual thick variety that we’re all familiar with. The restaurant uses Inaniwa-style udon noodles which are thinner and smoother and is handmade every step of the way.
Each bite of the noodles was a burst of sweet-salty broth. I was already enjoying the Beef Udon at this point but I saved the best for last – the beef.
The beef slices were so thin, almost like beef shabu. One bite and I was sold. The beef slices were thin, not tough and makes you wonder how each individual piece packs so much flavour.
My friend’s Wagyu Steak Don Set came with a bowl of hot Kake Udon and a Wagyu Steak Don. It’s quite a bit of food so check your tummy before ordering.
The Wagyu beef was cooked to medium rare doneness and tender to the bite. If you’re not a steak person (like me), go for the Beef Udon.
They serve both hot and cold Inaniwa-style udon as well as a variety of tempura and interesting side dishes such as Eihire (Grilled Stingray Fin) and Iburigakko & Cheese (Smoked Pickles & Cheese). You can see their entire menu here.
I’m definitely going back for more and I recommend that you give it a shot.
Address: 435 Orchard Road, #04-45 Wisma Atria, Japan Food Town, Singapore 238877
Opening Hours: Mon – Fri: 11.30am – 11pm, Sat – Sun: 11am – 11pm
Contact no.: 6262 3279
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(Header Image Source: FourSquare User Janie Chua)