12 must-eats (and drinks) at Japan Food Matsuri

From melt-in-your-mouth wagyu sushi to intricate wagashi, here’s what we found worth queuing for at the Takashimaya food fair

12 must-eats (and drinks) at Japan Food Matsuri
12 must-eats (and drinks) at Japan Food Matsuri
28 Sep 2018

12 must-eats (and drinks) at Japan Food Matsuri

In celebration of Takashimaya shopping centre’s 25th anniversary on the little red dot, the department store has rolled out a special edition of Japan Fair featuring Singaporeans’ biggest passion point: food.

Boasting some 40 booths offering treats and delicacies from various prefectures of Japan, many in Singapore for the first time, as well as a specially curated izakaya dining experience and live stations and demos, it can be overwhelming even for a Nipponphile, so we sacrificed our waistlines to search for the best picks at the fair. You’re welcome!

Japan Food Matsuri runs till October 14 at Takashimaya Square, Basement 2, Ngee Ann City.

Scallop with uni sauce ($8.50)
Scallop with uni sauce ($8.50)
28 Sep 2018

Scallop with uni sauce ($8.50)

At the izakaya-style area, the scallop with uni sauce is the star. Think grilled jumbo-sized hotate (bigger than a golf ball) topped with a layer of creamy sea urchin sauce and then torched for a hint of smokiness.

Also worth a mention is the Agu-Tonpei Yaki ($8.90) which features a perfectly runny omelette over a bed of fried pork, bean sprouts and cabbage. We would come back just for the egg.

Steak sushi ($6)
Steak sushi ($6)
28 Sep 2018

Steak sushi ($6)

Wagyu lovers shouldn’t miss the steak sushi which are made with top-of-the-line A4 grade Okinawan wagyu. One bite of the melt-in-your-mouth caramelised beef will send you to heaven. Raw cuts are also available from $28 per 100g of A3 grade steak cut wagyu, to $35 for 100g of A4 grade steak wagyu or shabu shabu cuts.

Wagashi ($6)
Wagashi ($6)
28 Sep 2018

Wagashi ($6)

The Japanese are known for their exquisite wagashi and the ones from Toraya Confectionery are almost too pretty to eat. We felt a little bad devouring our “Chestnut”, which is made with matcha, white bean paste and red bean, while watching the artisan meticulously assemble the sweet.

Mr Sakamoto's soba noodles ($10)
Mr Sakamoto's soba noodles ($10)
28 Sep 2018

Mr Sakamoto's soba noodles ($10)

For something more substantial, there’s light and refreshing cold soba made using Horokanai buckwheat grown by Mr Sakamoto himself. If you like what you eat, buy the zaru soba and tsuyu (dipping sauce) and whip up the dish yourself at home.

Sake
Sake
28 Sep 2018

Sake

No izakaya experience is complete without sake and here, you can sample 30 sake labels from from 12 breweries including Hashimoto Brewery and Japan’s oldest sake brewer Sudo Honke Brewery, which is best known for its natural and highly prized Junmai Daiginjo or “pure rice” sake. 

Prices start from $6 a glass and tasting sets are available at $15 (for three). Sake aficionados might want to sign up for the sake seminar to taste select brews and learn brewing tips and snack-pairings.

Seminars will be held on October 1 (World Sake Day) at 3pm, 5pm and 7pm.

Matcha latte (iced/hot, $8)
Matcha latte (iced/hot, $8)
28 Sep 2018

Matcha latte (iced/hot, $8)

For something more kid-friendly, quench your thirst at the Ippodo Matcha standing bar where the matcha drinks are made fresh with powdered tea and whisk and would satisfy the most discerning of connoisseurs. Also available are very gao premium matcha ($12), hoji tea ($7), and matcha-making paraphernalia.

Naganuma Ice cream puff (from $3.90)
Naganuma Ice cream puff (from $3.90)
28 Sep 2018

Naganuma Ice cream puff (from $3.90)

Naganuma Ice may be known for their ice creams and gelatos but at their booth, the puffs are the ones moving like hot cakes. We like that the crispy shell puffs, which are filled with creamy smooth custard, are less sweet than regular cream puffs. They only make 200 of these babies each day so you need to act quick if you want to get your hands on them. Also available in Strawberry ($4.20).

Mosaic don ($25)
Mosaic don ($25)
28 Sep 2018

Mosaic don ($25)

You’ve seen mosaic sushi, now dig into mosaic don, which is essentially a don layered with thick neatly laid out squares of sashimi like salmon, octopus, tuna and yellowtail. And in case you are wondering, you can’t pick them up and eat them like sushi.

Mochi Obanyaki ($3.50, 3 for $10)
Mochi Obanyaki ($3.50, 3 for $10)
28 Sep 2018

Mochi Obanyaki ($3.50, 3 for $10)

If mochi and tokiwado pancake had a love child, it would be Maruamami’s super chewy mochi obanyaki. There are eight flavours to choose from including egg custard, Hokkaido melon and their bestseller, red bean, but we recommend going for the purple sweet potato which is exclusive to the fair. 

King Crab Meat Bento ($42)
King Crab Meat Bento ($42)
28 Sep 2018

King Crab Meat Bento ($42)

At Sugiyama Suisan, you will find the most baller bentos. The King Crab Meat Bento and Ajidoraku Bento ($36), which is topped with uni and king crab, are the specialities.

Melonpan ($3)
Melonpan ($3)
28 Sep 2018

Melonpan ($3)

Don’t miss out on the melonpans if you are a fan of Japanese sweet breads. Freshly baked on site, our Brown Sugar bun, which came highly recommended, was crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside. Add $1 for whipped cream filling.

Seafood croquettes ($5.50)
Seafood croquettes ($5.50)
28 Sep 2018

Seafood croquettes ($5.50)

You can’t tell from the photo but these seafood croquettes (prawn, scallop and crab) are huge. The size of patties, they are definitely worth the $5.50 price tag, but if you have stomach space, get the set for $15.

Report a problem