Saturday, January 26, 2013

Ajisen Ramen

More Ramen back in Singapore! Sorry about posting too much Japanese food for the past 2 weeks. More variety next time!

It's the weekend. I visited the Ajisen outlet in Plaza Singapura with my friends.

Address: 68 Orchard Road #04-01 Plaza Singapura
Tel: 68370191

Check out Ajisen's menu here.

I decided to try the Shouyu Cha Shu Noukou Ramen set meal - $14.90.  Comes with an ala carte side dish and a cup of drink (green tea/ iced lemon tea) Complimentary drinks comes with the meal in Tokyo but sadly Singapore doesn't.

Anyway, this bowl of Ramen is pretty good. Perhaps because I was so hungry I can faint.

I love the rich soup base with sweetness of pork bones. The only flaw is that it is a little oily but nonetheless appetizing.

Cha Shu was not exactly tender, feels like leftovers that have been cooked twice and hence slightly tough. I was hoping for a semi cooked tamago but sadly no.

Ramen was well cooked and goes well with nori and soup.

Gyoza (5 pieces). The skin are pretty soft. I prefer crispier ones.

This is chicken cutlet with egg mayonnaise. Very crispy and tender meat.

Baby octopus was quite big. Yum.

Overall, I think Ajisen is not the best I have tasted but it is still pretty decent food. The plus point is probably the slightly lower price compared to other outlets.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

MOS burger - Japan

Trying out the original MOS burger. It is always good to try food that originates from the country. Japanese burgers!


Currently, MOS burger is only available in some parts of Asia-Pacific region.

Find out more at their website here.

Ebi burger - 350yen (approximately $5)
Chicken burger set meal - 600yen  ($8.60)

Hot Oolong tea. Nice cup of warm tea in the cold. I love how that put it in a porcelain cup rather refreshing compared to seeing paper cups with plastic lids.

I think I mentioned this a dozen times but Japanese people are really patient. It's okay if  you  take a bit longer to make an order. They are really meticulous and serve ice water right to your table when you did not order any drinks.

Chicken burger. I love the extremely soft buns and crispy chicken. The shredded lettuce really adds texture to the burger.

Ebi Burger. Fried fish fillet with shrimp bits. Shrimps are really fresh.

Thick fries! I really like MOS burger fries. Crispy outside with lots of soft potato in it.

In my opinion, MOS burger's standard is pretty consistent, the soft buns, fresh lettuce and their "make it on the spot after you order" cooking scheme. However the seafood is definitely fresher than the ones in Singapore outlets.

I tried a fish burger at MOS burger Seng Kang the other day and the fish fillet was not really that fresh compared to Japan's. Frozen imports can't be as good as those places where seafood is readily available.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Takoyaki in Japan

Takoyaki - 500yen (approx. $7.20)

This Takoyaki stall is located in the Meiji Shrine, Tokyo (Walking distance from Jingumae station.)

It was the 2nd day of new year (2nd January) so it was packed with people. There are various food stalls set up in tents in the open space as well as a large number of tables and chairs for families and friends to sit down and have their food.

There is a long queue for this particular takoyaki stall so we decided to try it.

Honestly, this is the crispiest takoyaki I have ever eaten. It is piping hot and the batter within is still soft.

Generous amount of octopus within and goes wel with the bonito flakes and mayonnaise. If it wasn't so expensive, I would have ordered another one!

The following day, we visited the Sensoji shrine in Asakusa, Tokyo. (Walking distance from the Asakusa station.) Similarly, there were numerous food tents set up. We tried the takoyaki again because we just love it. (500yen)

We ate in the tent and this time round  we ordered large takoyaki balls. These were bigger than the regular size ones. The skin is soft and so is the inside. Though it is a larger portion, I think  prefer the smaller crispy ones.

If I have the chance to visit Japan again, I'l definitely check out the Takoyaki Musuem located in Osaka to try more crazy flavors.

Do have some Takoyaki in Japan!

Monday, January 21, 2013

Katsuya - かつや

The outlet we visited was in Asakusabashi, Tokyo,few minutes walk from the Asakusabashi station. It is located right next to Matsuya. (松屋)

You can take a look at their menu here.

The set meal I ordered consist of a bowl of rice, miso soup and fried seafood. (Ebi fry, salmon, scallops and oysters) - 724yen (approx. $10.40)

The deep fried batter was really crispy and shrimp is fresh and springy. Salmon taste good with no fishy smell. Scallop was huge and so is the oyster. Very fresh seafood to go with the rice.

I would say it is pretty worth it for 10 bucks. This meal is available for a limited time so I'm not sure if they will continue to have this on the menu.


Sunday, January 20, 2013

Caffe Veloce World Beans

This is a Japanese cafe chain - Caffe Veloce World beans that is not available in Singapore nor other countries I believe. Very relaxed environment which I conveniently forgotten to take. I love their interior design and the pastries looks really good.

The cafe we visited was located in Asakusabashi, Tokyo, about 1-2 minutes walk from the Asakusabashi station. (Asakusa line)

It is so cold so we decided to have a warm cup of hot chocolate with marshmallows - 280 yen (approx $4)

Hot chocolate has always taste like Milo with melted marshmallows to me. It taste so good when you are freezing. I'll try to make a cup of these when it's rainy in Singapore.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

KFC - Japan

You might be wondering why did we visit Japan to eat KFC when there are loads of KFC in Singapore. That's because KFC Japan's serve some really interesting flavors that can't be found in other countries.

It is kinda of like Japanized western food which I find amusing. The KFC outlet we visited was in Mitaka, Tokyo which is close to the Mitaka station. (after we visited the Ghibli museum)

Set meal 590yen. (approx. $8.40) Comes with one chicken (marinated with vegetables, fruits and pepper), one riceball, one coleslaw and one cup of oolong tea. There are other drinks like coke though but I like iced tea.

It is really thoughtful that they included wet tissue to wipe our oily fingers. The cup of oolong tea is some small - like some kid-sized drink but I like it that way because I'm always unable to finish regular size drink so it reduces wastage.

The chicken skin is really crispy. It taste like crispy chicken coated with honey and garlic. Sweet and spicy. This is the juiciest chicken I ever had from KFC and the meat is very tender and well-flavored.

The coolest thing in the meal. I believe that the riceball is dipped in soya sauce and fried because that is what it taste like.

The surface tasted like soy sauce rice crust and in the middle just plain white rice. I feel like I'm eating mixed rice with chicken and vegetables.

This looks suspicious with the light green color mayonnaise. I was right, this coleslaw contains wasabi! The wasabi is quite mild though. I don't really love coleslaw in particular but I finished this one because it taste really good.

This might sound strange but be sure to eat KFC in Japan!

Friday, January 18, 2013

Chiyoda Sushi - 持ち帰りすし

Chiyoda sushi offers takeaway sushi. Check out their website here. There are a few outlets but we visited the one in Yanaka, Tokyo. About 4-5 minutes walk from the Yanaka station.

I love the thoughfulness of the shopkeeper. She offered to help me pack my sushi first while I'm digging for coins. The plastic bag was taped down nicely so that the box of sushi will not slide around.

The weather was really cold like a huge freezer so I actually when shopping around with this box of sushi. (No problem)

Sushi set - 490yen (approx $7) Soy sauce packaging is really nice.

My pack of sushi still look nice even after travelling for quite a bit. I mentioned in the Sushizanmai post that Japanese put wasabi in all the pieces of sushi so it is convenient to eat. (Unless of course you don't like wasabi)

These sushi tasted really good. I have never tried a squid sushi. I saw videos of dancing squid after pouring the soy sauce due to the acid content but this is fine. Haha. The squid is pretty crunchy, and squishy.

Chiyoda sushi is cheaper than eating at the sushi bars. Do try it when you are in Tokyo!

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Matsuya - 松屋

Address: MATSUYA ASAKUSA 1-4-1 Hanakawado, Taito-ku, Tokyo 111-0033
Telephone: +81-3-3842-1111 Open: 10:00 – 19:30

Check out their website here.

I ordered their spicy bacon don for 350yen. (approx. $5)

Initially, I wasn't going in to order this don but I'm  exactly good at reading Japanese so I ended up with this one.

There aren't a lot of spicy food in Japan so this was pretty good. I feel that they could have given more bacon. This looks like a lot but there is only like 4-5pieces of bacon with lots of fat in it (which I removed) It ends up with little bacon to go with the rice. It is good and the gravy with plain pearl rice was good as well, kinda of like spicy and sweet soy sauce.

The meal comes with a cup of Oolong tea. Matsuya have a lot of chains and are everywhere in Tokyo (Such as Asakusabashi and Ikebukuro) and the meals are affordable.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Yoshinoya - 吉野家

Address: 6-1 Daiba chome 1, Minato, Tokyo 135-0091,
Tel: +81 3-3599-2153

Check out their menu here.

Yakitori Tsukune Don - 390yen (approx. $5.60)

Yoshinoya have a number of outlets in Singapore but they have a greater variety of don in Japan! For example, the Yakitori Tsukune Don are not found in Singapore.

I love the Yakitori Tsukune Don (661 kcal) The grilled meat are tender and marinated with Yakitori sauce. Japanese pearl rice goes well with the Tsukune (chicke meatball) and Yakitori gravy. A small and filling bowl of don.

I like the fact they list down the calories in the meal that makes me health conscious and all.

If you intend to eat here, try those on the menu that are not available in Singapore!

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Sutadonya - 伝説のすた丼屋

Sutadonya is one of the many ramen/don shops we see.

They have prices and pictures of their menu online. Check them out here. We visited the Akihabara outlet in Tokyo.

Akihabara store
Nearest station : 6 minutes walk / Akihabara Station
Opening hours 11:00 to 23:00

I decided to try their miso char siew ramen - 500yen (approx. $7.20) You can upsize to a bigger bowl of ramen for an additional 100yen.

First of all, I think it looks really pretty. The ramen is so good. Very springy and goes well with crunch beansprouts. I love the miso soup. It tasted good with sweetness of pork meat. The char siew has a slight pork smell but nonetheless tender and yummy. Bamboo shoots are crunchy. I drank all the miso soup. Delicious.

When eating in ramen shops, complimentary drinks like cold water and ocha are served. I just love ramen!

Monday, January 14, 2013

Sweet Box Crepes

Harajuku 1-17-5 Jingu-mae, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo

11:00 - 10:30 pm (weekdays)
10:30 to 10:30 pm (holiday)

This creperie was one of the first few shops we see when we enter the Harajuku street. Very easy to spot, bright pink shop!

Crepes ranges from 330yen to 550yen. You can look at the menu on their website here.

Crepes are pretty common in Singapore but I had never tried them because I thought it wasn't worth paying so much for cream. After seeing so many people eating these crepes at the Harajuku street, we figure this is a food trend in Japan so my friend and I decided to try it.

Strawberry Chocolate flavor - 400yen (approx. $5.70)

I thought that crepes are crispy but I was wrong. It is actually pretty soft and slighty chewy. Taste like love letters but a soft version.

Warm crepe with fresh cream, chocolate drizzle and strawberry bits. Smooth cream, chewy crepe and strawberries cubes gives a pleasant surprise. It is not too sweet as the sour strawberries balances the sweet cream and chocolate. Eating one is enough, too fattening!

Pretty tasty.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Sushizanmai - すしざんまい

When visiting Japan, the most try dish is sushi! The Tsujiki market offers the freshest seafood in Tokyo. Auctions are held here and is especially busy during New Year Day.

Sushizanmai has quite a number of sushi chains in Japan and there are 2 shops around Tsujiki area. For more information, check out their website here.

〒 104-0045
4-10-15 Tsukiji, Chuo-ku, Tokyo
Mawaru-Sushizanmai Tsukiji-ten
four Tsukiji Chuo-ku Tokyo 104-0045 10-15

Tel :03-6226-6900 / FAX :03-6226-6901

Access: A 3-minute walk Hibiya Line Tsukiji Station
3 minutes walk from Oedo Line Tsukiji Fish Market

This sushi restaurant was recommended on Time's website.

Look at all those seafood kept at the counter. Very appetizing! Fresh sushi for breakfast is a privilege.

I have a very good experience dining here. First of all, I really love the warm welcome by the chefs and staff. Being greeted by 3 waiters and waitress, 4 chef is really amazing. Makes you feel like a royalty. Haha. We ate at the second floor.

A snapshot of the sushi making. This is a really cute chef that served us and communicated with us in simple English. Very friendly and skilled. (PS: He is grilling the Unagi)

I ordered the Uruoi Sushimori Special (13 pieces) - 2079yen (approx. $29.70)

This is the freshest plate of sushi I'd ever eaten. Sashimi is very springy. I love the fact that  Japan has wasabi in each and every piece of the sushi so I don't have to add them myself. Simply dip them in soy sauce and pop it in the mouth. Uni (sea urchin egg) sushi was very creamy and I really love it. Huge scallop on sushi.

Definitely worth the price.

Miso soup. I'm never really fond of miso soup but I actually like this one. I don't know if it is the extremely cold weather but this soup makes me feel warm in the inside and leave a sweetness in my mouth. It is not too salty, different from those miso soup in Singapore.

I really hope they have a franchise in Singapore so I can eat these again. If you are going to Tokyo, I definitely recommend you to have sushi here!

Friday, January 11, 2013

Tokyo - Convenience Store Food

I was in Japan for 9 days and it was freezing. At night it was averaging around 1°C and in the day around 10°C.

Japan is an expensive place to live in. The cheapest food you can find are in the convenience store such as Lawson, Lawson 100, Sunkus.

Note: The exchange rate was 1000 JPN yen - SGD $14.30 at that point in time.

Nissin - Chilli Tomato - 138yen. (approximately $1.80) I bought this in Lawson.

Nissin cup noodles are pretty common in Singapore but I had never tried the Chilli Tomato flavor. Like stated, it taste like chilli and tomato. The soup base is a little spicy and there is mild taste of tomato and sugar. 

I love the fact that the cooking time is reflected on the cup noodles (3mins) which really helps. Noodle is springy and not soggy. The best cup of noodle I had ever cooked.

Beef noodles - 105yen (approx. $1.50) Huge pack of soup base for extra flavor.

Crunchy vegetables, rich soup base and springy noodles. Beef bits taste like something else.

Onigiri - 129yen. (approx. $1.80, from Lawson) 

Another smart Japanese packaging. (The numberings are actually directions to open the Onigiri. There is Mentaiko (明太子)  (marinated roe of pollock and cod) which gives it a slight salty taste. Very tasty and filling. These are kept warm which is pretty nice for a cold day.

Menchi-katsu (メンチカツ) - 120 yen (approx. $1.70 from Lawson 100)

It is a kind of breaded and deep-fried ground meat cutlet on rice. Nothing beats a warm cutlet with rice in the cold. Ground chicken with delicious sauce. It taste peppery and goes well with the rice.

Dydo - 120yen. (approx. $1.70 from Sunkus) This is a japanese brand of roasted coffee. Pretty sleek packaging.

The reason why I bought this is because they are giving away MJ pin badges which looks pretty sweet.

Reduced sugar coffee. Strong rich coffee taste. A little bitter.