There's a new Japanese restaurant to check out on Tanjong Pagar Road, and they specialise in glorious tendon tempura rice bowls
What if we told you that you could eat something deep fried yet healthy? While the jury is still out on the health benefits of a perfectly prepared Japanese tempura, it’s not stopping us from queuing up at Tendon Ginza Itsuki, another concept by Mr Keisuke Takeda and his partner Mr Naoki Takaku.
When a restaurant has just two options on the menu, you know they do it well. Featuring just the special tendon (chicken, prawn, and vegetable tempura rice bowl, $13.90) and a vegetable tendon (vegetable tempura rice bowl, $12.90), you really can’t go wrong with either. This quaint 24-capacity nook in the CBD has a line wrapping around the corner before it even opens. Despite the queue, the simplicity of the menu makes it the perfect place to grab lunch as it takes just minutes from the time you order until your food is ready.
In true Japanese style, simplicity is balanced with perfection. Hosting two frying vessels, each maintained at a consistent and precise temperature ensures that deep-frying doesn’t deplete any of the integrity of the locally sources ingredients, whether it be meat or vegetables. Grab a seat at the bar to witness how flawlessly the chefs prepare the tempura soft-boiled egg that just oozes deliciousness over your steamy rice drizzled with their specially crafted tendon sauce. Vegetarians: note that the batter contains a tiny amount of egg.
Additionally, instead of preparing one massive vat of rice, Tendon Ginza Itsuki has several small cookers to ensure that each bowl is perfectly al dente to prevent the tempura from getting soggy. Each order is served in a designer Arita ceramic bowl artfully crafted to retain heat, with chawanmushi topped with the Tendon Ginza Itsuki special sauce, a miso soup, vegetable pickles (free-flow!), and extra tendon sauce. If you’re feeling like a little pick-me-up, they also serve sake and beer.
Tendon Ginza Itsuki, 101 Tanjong Pagar Road, Singapore 088522, p. 62216678. Open daily 11:30am-2:30am, 5:30pm-10pm.