The Somerset area of Orchard is getting exciting with many new openings. With the latest connection of Orchard Central to the other malls, that area is going to appeal to diners who are looking for variety, ambience and affordability.

Being a Japanese food lover, I am not kidding when I say I have tried every Japanese restaurant at Orchard Central. When I did a last count, there are 9 Japanese restaurants in total, and 1 new Japanese snack shop where I happily stocked up on my supply of Tokyo Bananas.

Orchard Central is the must-go destination in Orchard for Japanese foodies. Here are 10 Favourite Japanese Food Places at Orchard Central.

Sumiya #12-02
Tel: +65 6509 9618

When the sashimi plate from Sumiya first arrived, we were amazed at how beautiful, how fresh and how wallet-friendly this is. Sashimi of 7 Kinds at $60! What you get would depend on the seasonal fish caught on that day in various parts of Japan to ensure freshness.

We had the Hamachi (Yellowtail), Maguro (Tuna) , Ama-Ebi (Sweet Prawn), Masu (Trount), Hotate (Scallop) and Uni (Sea Urchin) from Hokkaido and Tokimeki, a local fish from Kochi prefecture in Shikoku Island of Japan. All melt-in-your-mouth goodness, in a charming restaurant with an old school Japanese touch and fantastic 12th storey view of Orchard Road. Their Omakase Skewers ($25 for 6) are also evenly grilled and delicious.

Tanuki by Standing Sushi Bar #02-03
Tel: +65 6636 5949

Tanuki opened by restaurateur Howard Lo (also behind Standing Sushi Bar and Shinkansen) is a Japanese-inspired raw bar, the place where executives hang out for fresh oysters (slurp), classic cocktails and happy hour drinks – $10 per martini, $9 pints of Heineken and free light bites from 5-8pm.

Their Tanuki rolls are somewhat like sushi, all with a twist. My favourite was an American Roll maki sushi inspired by a cheeseburger, with cheddar cheese, sliced beef and pickles deep-fried (I may want to rename this as ‘guilty sushi’), and a Shrimptastic fried ebi roll sprinkled with sakura ebi and drizzled with spicy sauce. Hey, sushi can be fun!

Tonkichi #07-06
Tel: +65 6238 7976

One of my favourite Japanese comfort food is the ‘Tonkatsu’ – fried pork cutlet which Tonkichi is known to serve one of the best in Singapore. Their Hire Katsu Set is popular among weekday lunch goers, with deep fried fillet, prawn and vegetable katsu all in with sashimi, rice, appetizer and chwanmushi. At $22, that’s a steal.

The outlet at Orchard Central also boasts a wider menu variety, with a selection of sashimi and side dishes, and I almost always go for the Japanese Tonkatsu Curry Rice.

Maccha House #B1-39
Tel: +65 6636 5830

Maccha House specialises in traditional Maccha beverages and desserts created from this fine green tea powder, all sourced from Kyoto Japan.

While they also serve hot food items, most are really here for their desserts, such as the Maccha Soft Serve Anmitsu with Rice-flour Dumplings, and Maccha Parfaits which come with rice flour, chocolate or soy milk pudding. They even serve the Hot Maccha drink the traditional way – self-concocted out of a bowl.

Kiseki Japanese Buffet Restaurant #08-01/02/03
Tel: +65 6736 1216

On a Monday weekday afternoon at Kiseki, the restaurant was almost packed full. Years after it is opened, the Japanese buffet restaurant continues to have long lines and pack the crowds. (You can call to make reservations yah?)

Weekday meals are at $19.80++ and $31.80++ for lunch and dinner, and weekends at $27.80++ and $34.80++ respectively. There are over 200 buffet items. Since I have been there a few times, my favourite stuff are the Yakitori skewers, Nabemeno hot pots, Agemono deep fried snacks, cold crab claws (during dinners only I think) and waffle with ice cream. What’s yours?

Genki Sushi #03-32
Tel: +65 6238 0900

Conveyer belt sushi restaurant at Orchard Central was just newly re-furbished late last year. As customers, what we are usually concerned about conveyer belt restaurants are the freshness of the ingredients and quality of rice. Genki Sushi actually uses premium quality Koshihikari rice, which is more refined and superior to other grades of ordinary rice.

Ootoya Japanese Restaurant #08-12
Tel: +65 6884 8901

Whenever I feel like eating affordable home-styled Japanese cuisine, Ootoya seems to be the default choice. Most of its dishes and even sets are priced below $20. Their food, made without added preservatives and flavourings, also taste healthier and lighter on the palate. Try their Pozu Burger or home-made Soba made fresh daily in-house using buckwheat imported from Hokkaido.

Shabu Sai #08-09/10/11
Tel: +65 6884 6760

For all-you-can-eat Shabu-Shabu and Sukiyaki buffet, Shabu Sai serves up to seven types of soup bases with occasional monthly specials such as Tonkotsu Kimchi and Yuzu & Salt Beauty Pot. Buffet lunch price is at $16.99++ and $9.99++ for child.

Nantsuttei #07-12/13
Tel: +65 63377166 Opening Hours: 11am-10:30pm

Ramen lovers are all waiting for Nantsuttei to open, and it finally did at Orchard Central. If you have yet to try, look out for their rich and creamy tonkotsu pork bone soup with a layer of ‘black ma-yu’ – roast garlic oil which further brings out the flavour of the thick broth. Absolutely one of my favourite ramen in Singapore.

ShiokJapan! #B1-03

Every time this particular colleague of mine goes to Japan, she will bring back a luggage of Tokyo Banana. Yes, and it is not even cabin-sized. Well, she does not have to travel that far anymore. If you have instant cravings for Japanese speciality snacks from Tokyo Banana, Ishiya Shiroi Kobito 白い恋人 (love these), Ginza Cheesecake, Meiji snacks and KitKat of unique flavours, ShiokJapan! has specially brought them in. Tokyo Banana fans may just spot a flavour they have never tried before.

* This post is brought to you by Orchard Central. For more information about Orchard Central, head on to and



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