Quite a bit has been written about Tendon and Gyudon in Singapore, that I thought it is time to venture to Butadon 豚丼 aka Pork Donburi.

The Butadon is a Japanese dish consisting of a bowl of rice topped with pork slices, generally simmered in a mildly sweet sauce or grilled.

Aburi-EN – VivoCity
1 Harbourfront Walk #01-159/160, VivoCity Singapore 098585
Tel: +65 6259 9603
Opening Hours: 11.00am – 10.00pm (Mon – Sun)

Aburi-EN – Tanjong Pagar Centre
7 Wallich Street, #B2-09, Tanjong Pagar Centre, Singapore 078884
Tel: +65 6214 3570
Opening Hours: 11.00am – 10.00pm (Mon – Sun)

The Buta Don ($12) is a top selling item in the menu, a rather generous portion of grilled chestnut-fed pork for its price.

The meat comes from a superior chestnut-fed pork, known to be tastier than normal pork.

It is harvested from carefully selected pigs which enjoys a natural diet that contains chestnuts. This contributes to a tender juicy meat with a sweet nuance.

The meat cut is that of a loin, simmered in a Miyazaki Yakiniku Sauce, a sweet-savoury light glaze.

The rather huge pork slices are arranged neatly in a circular way, resembling a blossomed flower from certain angles. Relish this prime meat’s tenderness as you bite into the juicy pork slices. Aburi-EN (VivoCity)

One Raffles Place #B1-18, Singapore 048616
Opening Hours: 11:30am – 2:00pm, 5:30pm – 8:00pm (Mon – Fri), 11:30am – 2:00pm (Sat), Closed Sun, PH

Chalong is a modern fusion kiosk inspired by Thai flavours serving charcoal grilled meat rice bowls, and has recently opened in the basement of One Raffles Place.

The pork is sourced from free-range Iberico pigs in Spain that are fed 100% on acorn.

Go for the 18hr Sous-Vide Iberico Jowl ($12), a signature dish made with in-house premium Iberico pork cheek/jowl marinated in a special combination of Thai spices to impart a uniquely balanced flavour to the meat.

The gloriously charred and tender pork jowl is sliced and served with Chalong’s in-house specialty Chilli Sauce that is smoky, sour, sweet and spicy. One Raffles Place Food Guide

Kogane Yama – Jem
Jem #01-15, 50 Jurong Gateway Road, Singapore 608549
Opening Hours: 11am-10pm Last order at 9.30pm (Mon – Fri), 11am – 11pm Last Order 10.30pm (Sat – Sun)

Kogane Yama – Bugis Junction
Bugis Junction #02-50, 200 Victoria Street, Singapore 188021
Opening Hours: 11am – 10pm Last order 9.30pm (Mon – Fri), 11am-11pm Last Order 10.30pm (Sat – Sun)

The Pork Belly Shogayaki Don ($10.90) from Kogane Yama is pretty affordable, if you have donburi cravings at Jem or Bugis.

“Shoga” means ginger, while yaki refers to grilling or frying. Do you know that “shogayaki” is the second most popular pork dish in Japan after Tonkatsu?

This consists of thin slices of pork belly browned in the pan, then stir-fried with enoki mushrooms and ginger sauce.

Served simply with rice and onsen egg, this makes a flavourful, comforting dish that may just remind you of (a Japanese) mum’s cooking. Kogane Yama (Jem)

Baristart Coffee Singapore
65 Tras Street Singapore 079004 (Tanjong Pagar MRT)
Opening Hours: 10am – 10pm (Mon – Sun)

A dish that originated from Tokachi, Obihiro, the Obihiro Butadon ($18.80) is a specialty rice bowl that comes with premium pork.

The grilled slices of Hokkaido Kurobuta pork belly are basted in a soy-based marinade and leans more on the sweet side.

Generously served on top of steamed white short-grain Japanese rice, and glazed with a special teriyaki sauce.

Perfect for an everyday lunch. Baristart Coffee (Tras Street)

Tokachi Tontaro – Downtown Gallery
6A Shenton Way Downtown Gallery #03-20 Singapore 068815
Opening Hours: 11am – 9:30pm (Mon – Sat), Closed Sun

Tokachi Tontaro which specialises in Buta Don, has opened by both Plaza Singapura and OUE Downtown Gallery.

It features bowls of grilled pork cooked in a Hokkaido speciality tare sauce and served atop premium Hokkaido Yumepirika rice.

Available are the Premium Butadon ($22.80, $25.80) which uses Japanese Kagoshima Pork; or Regular Butadon ($11.80, $13.80, $16.80) which is topped with American pork coated in a signature tare sauce.

The regular version offers you other flavours of Spicy Tomato and Miso Butadon.

The Regular Butadon ($13.80) was an acceptable bowl, and as straight-forward as it gets – 5 slices of grilled pork on rice.

There wasn’t anything really bad about it, but lacked that special something that would keep me excited. Tokachi Tontaro (Plaza Singapura)

Gochi-so Shokudo
One Raffles Place #B1-30 Singapore 048616
Tel: +65 65366447
Opening Hours: 11am – 9:30pm (Mon – Fri), 11am – 9pm (Sat, Sun)

Located at the corner of the basement of One Raffles Place is Gochi So Shokudo, an under-the-radar eatery that focuses on the premium pork rice bowls, with prices targeted at the office crowd.

Despite being affordable, Gochi-so Shokudo uses only the most premium Iberian pork from Spain. The pork is charcoal grilled to bring out the best flavours from the meat.

Popular items in the menu include the Charcoal Grill Iberico Jowl Don ($13.80), made with tender Iberico pork jowl grilled over flaming charcoals for that amazing char-grilled smoky flavours.

Topped with a creamy onsen egg atop steamed Japanese fluffy white rice, the broken egg yolk adds a velvety texture over the whole don.

The Iberico Pork Belly Don ($10.00) is one of its most value-for-money menu options. It comes with a generous portion of thinly sliced Iberico pork belly, a perfectly executed onsen egg, seaweed strips, and sliced spring onions atop a bowl of hot, fluffy rice. One Raffles Place Food Guide

Bazuka Yakibuta バズか 焼豚
Great World City #B1-12A, Kim Seng Promenade Singapore 237994 (Takeaway only)
Tel: +65 6735 1398
Opening Hours: 11:00am – 8:00pm (Mon – Sun)

Outlets at One Raffles Place and OUE Downtown Gallery.

This is Singapore twist’s to the Japanese Donburi, topped with roast pork or char siew, accompanied with an onsen egg, pickles and crispy homemade shallot chilli.

The menu is kept lean, with options of Caramel Roast Pork Donburi ($8.80), Crackling and Caramel Roast Pork Donburi ($10.80).

Their caramelised roast pork took three days to make from a secret recipe, brushed with honey and crisped in the oven. Lean yet tender, sweetish tasty.

However, the crackling pork was slightly disappointing, somehow a tad tough.

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