Different from Tampopo, Tampopo Grand is an upscale Japanese restaurant that serves seasonal food imported from Japan. Remember the 6S of the restaurant: Shabu-Shabu, Sashimi, Sushi, Soba, Sukiyaki.
Do you know soba is high in proteins? Tampopo Grand serves 100% buckwheat soba that is imported from Hokkaido. Chiobu preferred the hot black pig tsuke soba ($15, pictured above) that gave the noodles a rich flavor but I preferred the traditional cold Etanbetsu soba ($14.80). Dipped in just chill soy sauce and other condiments, it was more cooling and refreshing in Singapore’s heat.
We thought the Tampopo Grand Sashimi Moriawase for 3 pax ($88) was ok but pricy. There were 5 types of fish [tai, hirame, hamachi (yellowtail), mackerel and otoro], each in 3 thick slices. We advise just getting a plate of otoro, so soft and fat it melted in our mouths.
Black Pig Shabu Shabu set ($50)
New Japan Beef Sukiyaki Set ($80)
Between the Black Pig Shabu Shabu set ($50) and New Japan Beef Sukiyaki Set ($80), both Chiobu and I preferred the latter. I’ve always found shabu shabu too plain–just meat cooked in water, then dipped in sauces. On the other hand, sukiyaki–or meat cooked in mixture of soy sauce, sugar, mirin–can add flavor of the meat. The prime Japan beef at Tampopo Grand is imported from Iwata: the texture was slightly rougher than wagyu but it was less greasy and healthier. The salt in sukiyaki brought out the taste of fats and the raw egg dip washed away excess salt, enhanced the beef with a silky creaminess. Very delicious.
The PR asked, “Ready for desserts?”
“Green tea ice cream with red bean?” I replied.
“How do you know there is green tea ice cream? Have you been here?”
“Haha, no. Because Japanese restaurants have the same desserts.”
But my generalization wasn’t true for Tampopo Grand, which has a Special dessert, aloe vera orange jelly ($8.80). Only ten are made daily because it is so labour-intensive to scrape the orange, leaving the skin intact. When you eat this, lift up the lid and squeeze the orange into the dessert. The healthy dessert was very refreshing: some aloe vera jelly, some pulp, some juice, sweet, citrusy and varying texture. Next time, I want to order all ten of them.
Overall, the food was good but costly.
391A Orchard Road, #04-28,
Takashimaya Shopping Centre,
T: 6735 2959
M-F: 11am-3pm, 6-10.30pm
Rating: 3.015/5 stars
ps: Thanks Er Han for the invite.