Ah… An all pork burgers joint. Dojo at Circular Road wants to be the clear and dominant pork burger brand in Singapore. This is a bold move.
Dojo also refers to a Japanese martial arts school, and hopes to instil the 2 most important traits of a martial artist into their culinary endeavour: Discipline and commitment. The owner is also behind popular Malaysian burger restaurant Ninja Joe.
There are currently 8 pork burgers on sale, all with weird mostly Japanese inspired names from Hadoken (street fighter punch call), Little Dragon (named after Bruce Lee), Kaiju (Cheesy Mushroom. Malay word for cheese is Keju), and Elvisu (peanut butter jelly pork burger. Elvis’ favorite food was peanut butter jelly sandwich).
Some names we get it. Mostly we don’t.
A bite into the Hadoken ($13), a pork patty burger with spicy chilli meat sauce, cheese and bacon quickly brought me to my childhood. The taste reminded me of my grandma.
You see, fast food was a luxury item when I was young. My ah-ma, knowing that I always had cravings for burgers, created her own recipe based on what she watched on TV commercials. She couldn’t eat beef, and therefore created a minced pork version and added sambal chilli sauce to spice things up.
So the Hadoken could strike a nostalgic chord. The patty was moist, sandwiched in a daily-made soft bun, and did not have that porky taste. My favourite of the lot.
Little Dragon ($12) felt aptly named. This uses a grilled pork steak, instead of a minced pork patty, and suffered the fate of being lean and tough.
If you feel in lack of calories and oil, perhaps the Komba Bao can save you ($6 for 2 pieces). This contains oily braised pork belly in between oily deep fried mantou buns. My very skinny friend was happily chomping this down. I gave a worried look.
I like Dojo. It’s an unpretentious, sincere place serving good-old pork burgers. Time to give Omakase Burger a run for its money.
72 Circular Road Singapore 049426 (Raffles Place MRT)
Opening Hours: 11am – 9:30pm Mon-Sat