Besides Meidiya and Emporium Shokuhin, Ippin Cafe Bar is probably the next best place in the city to get your hands on artisan food products from Japan. What distinguishes the latter from the former two “depa-chikas” is that the Yayoya Grocer curates far lesser items, those of which are less common and exclusive products to the store.
For instance, they are the sole distributor of the delicious Fruit Sakes ($32-$39) and Tateshinapple Juice ($34, 720ml) Tateshinapple Cider ($28, 200ml)
So not only they are good, they are guaranteed the cheapest.
I started my meal at Ippin with the Ayu Sweet Fish ($5). Ayu is a river fish caught in streams. Usually grilled, but they use the grilling method here. The Ayu was stewed with ginger which sort of removed the muddy taste and the Tamari soy sauce lended a sweet note to the meat. Keeping it delicate as it is. Ayu is a rather unusual fish in Singapore, so I would strongly recommend this.
The Shishiori Ikura Don ($43/ set) which requires almost a blue dollar note might be pricey but the portion is equally generous. You can’t see the rice until you look carefully. The salmon roe used was specially imported ikura from Kesennuma in Northeastern Japan. They were contrastingly light to their briny Norwegian counterparts. I would never complain it is too much.
I adore the complimentary Mini Houjicha Pudding which . It was soft yet firm and the Houjicha was robust. All too good albeit a little petite.
Other Japanese “staple” food on the menu includes the Nikujaga ($5), a breakfast dish that is ubiquitous in almost all Japanese households and on the other side of the spectrum, you have the Yakisoba ($12/ set) which you can’t miss in Summer Temple Fests. Both were excellently executed.
The next time you drop by, you might also want to try the Sake Tasting ($15/ 3 shots), one of the most value for money set in town. Working on your preferences, Ayumi, the sommelier/owner will customise something for you.
The above article is written by @ramenking2017. You can find him on instagram where he shares his love for food and travel.