- Rachel Chia
Tsuta Japanese Dining, 313@Somerset
Fans of ramen brand Tsuta, have we got news for you. The Michelin-starred chain is launching a new brand, Tsuta Japanese Dining, and it’s selling not just its famous noodles, but also Japanese dishes like sushi, rice bowls and tempura. The cosy, 30-seater outlet is opening at 313@somerset on April 28.
The entire menu is crafted by Tsuta head chef Yuki Onishi, who’s aimed to create flavours that stay true to the Tsuta DNA. Eight ramen flavours will be on offer, including Premium Char Siu Shoyu Soba, Teriyaki Chicken Paitan Soba, and Mala Tonkotsu Soba.
We’re delighted to see Salmon Carpaccio (S$9.80) on the menu as a worthy alternative to sashimi. Light and refreshing from the tangy lemon vinaigrette and tomato flakes, dill and amaranthus, we wolf this down in seconds: a good omen for the rest of the meal.
The new Tsuta concept offers Japanese street food like Seafood Okonomiyaki (S$16.80). The savoury pancake boasts both prawns and char siu, and it’s topped with miso sauce, as well as the usual: bonito flakes, seaweed, mayo. Unlike typical okonomiyaki, which tends to be thick, Tsuta’s one is relatively thin. The batter’s dense and almost egg-muffin-like, so eat up quick, because it gets rubbery if it sits too long.
Next up are hefty hand rolls packed with butter sushi rice and topped with a choice of three ingredients. We opt for the Uni Temaki (S$18), which features huge pieces of bright orange sea urchin flesh imported from Hokkaido; it’s luscious, creamy and luxurious. The other options include Ikura Temaki (S$8) topped with salmon roe, and Negitoro Temaki (S$8) topped with minced tuna.
Those who prefer rolls with a greater variety of ingredients can opt for the typical sushi rolls, including the classic Avocado Ebi Roll (S$16.80), featuring avocado, carrots, breaded prawns, tobiko (flying fish roe) and a sweet chili mayo that’s surprisingly spicy. Not recommended for young kids, but a great choice for those who like some heat in their food.
A nice nod to Singapore, the Salted Egg Roll (S$16.80) comprises a snug centre of salmon and avocado, topped off with tobiko, spring onions, crunchy rice crisps, and a generous drizzle of salted egg yolk and teriyaki sauce. It’s pretty and colourful, though we’re divided on whether salted egg yolk goes with vinegared rice. Nevertheless, kudos to the chef for incorporating a local flavour into the dish.
Our favourite of the afternoon – hands down – is the moreish Wagyu Beef Roll (S$21.80), which tastes like a beef bowl in sushi roll form. The insides are packed with sweet egg and crunchy veggies, while the top is blanketed in a layer of pan-seared, US wagyu beef slices. A lick of sweet-savoury steak sauce, and fried garlic chips for fragrance and crunch – we’re in heaven. Hearty and delicious, we’re definitely ordering two of these the next time we visit.
Those who want to enjoy the roll at a more economical price can also opt for the Wagyu Beef Don (S$19.80), which boasts similar ingredients, plus a perfectly wobbly onsen egg.
While we love Tsutua’s ramen, we’re glad to see the chain is now successful enough to expand into new concepts and offer more than noodles. The sushi is yummy, and the salmon carpaccio makes us forget all about sashimi. We expect long queues of curious Tsuta fans when the new outlet opens, and all we can say is: remember to order that beef roll.
313 Orchard Rd, #01-16, 313@somerset, Singapore 238895
Open 11am to 10pm daily