Tsuta 蔦 in Tokyo Japan which is the world’s first and only Michelin-starred ramen eatery, has opened its first overseas outpost in Singapore.
While the Pacific Plaza outlet has closed, there are three other branches at FUNAN, VivoCity and JEWEl Changi Airport.
This Singapore outlet is said to use the same signature soy sauce and high quality ingredients as the Japanese flagship store.
While it is known as a “ramen” store, Tsuta would prefer to call its offerings Soba.
Two basic ramen choices are available in Singapore – the Shoyu Soba ($15.00) and Shio Soba ($15.00), inclusive of GST with no additional service charge.
The noodles are ordered via a vending machine, the typical Japanese way, but in a more modernized form with the option of NETS, credit card and cash.
One of its winning elements is the soy base, created from a special blend of shoyu that includes Chef Onishi’s inhouse formulated shoyu, and a custom-brewed shoyu made in Wakayama Prefecture.
The Shoyu Soba ($15.00 for basic bowl, $22.80 for addition of char siu and ajitama egg) appears to be the crowd favourite, featuring its distinct piquant black truffle sauce.
I liked the bite of the straight long thin noodles, made from a blend of several types of whole wheat and whole grains flours.
However, I will be honest here. When I eat a good bowl of ramen, my mood is lifted, eyes brighten up, and will likely text many friends to “Come try this!”
I wasn’t (and some of the guests I asked around) overwhelmed by the overall taste, perhaps due to loads of expectations and anticipation.
It was all right though.
Many commented that the soup was too salty, and might not suit the local palates. There is a possibility. (In fact, I am still feeling the saltiness in my tongue as I am typing this right now.)
Personally, I found the broth not hot enough to a satisfying degree, despite ordering a second bowl and eating straight away without taking any photos.
It was after I asked that I learnt that the soup was purposely cooked till slightly below boiling point, to best bring out the flavours of its ingredients.
Also, the ramen bowls themselves have been pre-heated, noting that the air-conditioned environment would bring down the temperature quickly. A good measure by the shop to ensure quality.
The rest of the ingredients, such as the char siu cooked with Canadian pork collar (chilled, not frozen), and ajitama egg, were executed well.
Between the two, most preferred the Shoyu Soba over the Shio Soba.
The Shio Soba ($15.00 for basic bowl, $22.80 for additional ingredients) comprises of a chicken-seafood blend, with additional of Okinawa sea salt and Mongolian rock salt.
This is overall lighter, more delicate in taste, and would suit those who prefer a not-so-heavy soup base.
Recommendations: Don’t take too long shooting your photos and eat straight away – they turn cold fast.
Singaporeans were excited that we have a Michelin ramen right near our downsteps. The soba was worth a try due to its star status, but I am really not sure about queuing too long a time for this.
Japanese Soba Noodles Tsuta – Funan
109 North Bridge Rd, #01-04, Funan Mall, Singapore 179105
Opening Hours: 11am – 9pm (Mon – Sun)
Japanese Soba Noodles Tsuta – VivoCity
1 Harbourfront Walk, B2-29A, VivoCity, Singapore 098585
Opening Hours: 11am – 9pm (Sun – Thu), 11am – 10pm (Fri, Sat, Eve of PH, PH)
Japanese Soba Noodles Tsuta – JEWEL
78 Airport Blvd, #02-242 Jewel Changi Airport, Singapore 819666
Opening Hours: Mon to Thu: 11am – 9pm, 11am – 10pm (Fri, Sat, Sun, Eve of PH, PH)