The izakaya culture is which friends and colleagues gather to unwind over delectable dishes and drinks has become quite popular in Singapore.
Owned by Japanese proprietors, this izakaya is already well-liked by Japanese expatriates and locals working nearby.
It is the sister izakaya of the well-known Japanese restaurant Izakaya Niningashi.
One notable aspect of Izakaya Sazangaku is its ability to accommodate large groups, making it an ideal choice for gatherings and celebrations, with a capacity to host up to 25 people.
This feature makes it a go-to spot for those looking to enjoy Japanese cuisine in a communal setting.
The izakaya prides itself on offering an extensive selection of sake, with a wide variety sourced through its own sake shipment, ensuring that patrons can find the perfect pairing for their meal.
Now, onto the culinary offerings at Izakaya Sazangaku:
Seasonal 8 Kinds Sashimi Platter ($55.80 for 2pax)
The izakaya takes pride in using fresh fish that is air-flown in from Japan. The lineup for this deluxe sashimi platter changes frequently due to the seasonal availability of fresh fish.
Some of the featured sashimi varieties may include Otoro (extra fatty tuna), Chutoro (medium fatty tuna), Kinmedai (golden eyed snapper), Sawara (Spanish mackerel), and Kanpachi (amberjack).
What I enjoyed most was the Otoro which offered a luxurious and buttery texture with a rich, melt-in-your-mouth experience.
Of course, the Chutoro was also rich, buttery, and slightly sweet.
If you prefer something with delicate sweetness and a slightly firm texture, then the Kinmedai will appeal. There is also the Kanpachi which with a cleaner, mild taste which create a symphony of seafood flavours.
Additional servings can be ordered at $27.90++ per person.
Tuna Steak Sashimi ($79.90)
This dish features a high-quality Maguro (bluefin tuna), directly air-flown in from the renowned Toyosu Market in Japan.
What makes this dish special is its presentation, resembling a steak due to the cross-section cut of the fish.
This cut offers a trio of Maguro goodness, including Akami, Chutoro, and Otoro.
To enhance the dining experience, the izakaya pre-cuts the tuna steak into smaller pieces, allowing diners to savour every bite easily.
The Akami (lean tuna) provides a clean, meaty bite with a mild, slightly sweet taste.
While the Chutoro (medium fatty tuna) offers a buttery richness, and Otoro (extra fatty tuna) takes it to the next level with its luscious, almost creamy texture.
Additionally, the izakaya offers the option to sear the fish skin, providing a savoury finishing touch with slightly smoky note to the meal. A must-order, especially for sashimi lovers.
Beef Intestine Hotpot (Motsu Nabe) ($35.90, good for 2 pax)
You don’t often see this in Singapore, though this Japanese hotpot is popular with Japanese patrons.
Motsu refers to beef intestines, and in this hotpot, they take center-stage.
If you never had beef intestines before, they have a slightly chewy texture, reminiscent of other organ meats, but they are not overly tough. When cooked in the hotpot, they absorb the broth’s flavours and become tender and succulent.
The soup was surprisingly light actually, generously garnished with chives, lettuce, and bean sprouts, which added a fresh and crunchy element to the dish.
For those who enjoy a spicy kick, there is the option to add yuzu kosho or yuzu pepper to the Motsu Nabe.
I recommend this as it adds a zesty, citrusy brightness and a subtle, tingling heat to the dish.
Additionally, for Mentaiko enthusiasts, there is a Mentai Mosu Nabe ($45.90) available.
Authentic Style Japanese Yakitori (from $3 per stick)
What’s an izakaya experience without yakitori?
Izakaya Sazangaku offers an array of Japanese skewers, from Momo, Nankotsu, Butabara, Reba, Hatsu, To Tsukune.
One of the top-sellers is the “Butabara” or Pork Belly skewer which is a treat with its fatty and flavourful pork. There is also the “Momo” or Chicken Thigh skewer, juicy and tender with slight smoky flavour.
And my personal favourite was the “Tsukune” – minced chicken which was tender and slightly sweet, by the creamy richness by a dip of egg yolk.
Unique Japanese Skewer Pork Roll (from $4 per stick)
For those seeking a unique twist on skewers, the Unique Japanese Skewer Pork Roll is recommended.
These “meat roulade” skewers are made using premium pork imported from Japan and are rolled tightly with toppings.
Options include “Buta Shimeji,” where shimeiji mushrooms are wrapped in miso-based pork belly, and “Buta Okra,” featuring ladyfingers wrapped in pork belly with chive sauce.
“Buta Shiso” showcases oba leaves wrapped in pork belly, while “Buta Tomato” offers cheesy tomatoes wrapped in pork belly.
And for a unique twist, there is the “Buta Aburi Mentai Ajitama,” which includes seasoned quail egg wrapped in pork belly with aburi mentai mayonnaise.
Chicken Nanban ($10.90)
An all-time best seller at Izakaya Sazangaku. This sharing dish presents five pieces of plump deep-fried chicken thigh that are seasoned with salt and pepper.
They are generously doused in a special chicken nanban vinegar sauce and topped with house-made tartar sauce.
Succulent chicken with a zesty tang.
Dashimaki DX ($33.90)
Made in-house with fresh local eggs, this omelet is seasoned with sugar, shoyu (soy sauce), and shirodashi.
A comforting and slightly sweet dish.
You have the option to customize your Dashimaki with various toppings and fillings such as oroshi & shirasu (grated daikon and small fish) or mentaiko (spicy cod roe).
For a truly indulgent experience, the “Dashimaki DX” features the regular Dashimaki omelet topped with a generous amount of crab meat and ikura (salmon roe).
Izakaya Sazangaku takes great pride in its wide and diverse selection of sake. What sets them apart is their commitment to sourcing through their own sake shipment.
Firstly, keep an eye out for their Monthly Sake Promotion, which allows patrons to enjoy discounts of up to 20% on selected sake varieties.
A fantastic opportunity for both sake enthusiasts and newcomers to explore premium Japanese rice wines at a more affordable price.
For those looking to stock up or share the joy of sake with friends, Izakaya Sazangaku offers a convenient package deal. When you purchase three bottles of sake, you can enjoy significant savings of $80.
3 Craig Road Singapore 089663
Tel: +65 6970 9339
Opening Hours: 6pm – 10:30pm, Last order 9:45pm (Tue – Sat), Closed Sun, Mon
* This entry is brought to you in partnership with Izakaya Sazangaku.