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Omakase Dinner at Teppei Singapore

Posted on Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Hello! It's been a while since I've done a food post, but here's a pretty memorable Omakase dinner we had at Teppei Restaurant in June. It happened on a spur of the moment thanks to Joel who had extra reservation spaces! For those of you who don't know, Teppei's Omakase dinners are fully booked till October this year so it really was a miracle we even got to eat there at such short notice!

Hello dining companions!

Ambience wise, the restaurant is cramped but cosy and dimly lit. It really feels like you are in Japan itself! As you can see above, the restaurant only sits about 20 and has two seatings a night - no wonder they're all booked up!

Free flow cold green tea! Kudos to them for constantly topping it up - I never experienced an empty glass. Justin says it's because they had a dedicated staff just to pour the drinks!

As Omakase literally translates to "I'll leave it to you" in Japanese, in the restaurant setting, it means that the chef gets to pick what we eat - so don't be surprised if what you end up eating may not be the same as what I've reviewed!

First up - what is essentially a veggie dish. Though not the most memorable, I love how we get to taste a little bit of everything. They have edamame, some kind of sweet caramelised potatoes, spinash and all.

Next up: not much review needed - sashimi! I love how we get to try one of everything. Of course my favourites are the swordfish (mekajiki) and tuna belly (otoro). Edwina is angry because her salmon was some weird, overly fatty and poorly cut part which should have never made it to the plate, but did, but in general most of our pieces look fine.

Then we are served chawanmushi! A staple but not necessarily the most outstanding. There's a little some extra broth in it that makes it a little different from usual ones, but I can't place the taste, oops.

This roll looks underwhelming but packs a punch. There's rice, mashy fatty tuna and something crispy and tasty inside for extra texture, I like to think it was lard??  Gosh I'm sorry, I don't know what I was eating half the time because there was no menu.

It's also not the most glam thing to eat, haha. Weiru gives me judge-y look for trying to catch him in a state of unglam-ness.

Anyway, the boys get a roll that is double the size as the girls! If you are a girl, you can ask them to give you a boy-sized one too, but it's crazy filling because of the rice, so girl-size was more than enough for me!

Next up! Some cold shell fish we are to eat raw. Once again I don't know what on Earth this is!! This experience would be so much heightened if we knew what we were putting in our mouths. It's kind of chewy and... gritty. Like you know when your clams have sand in them and you eat it? Quite meh. Cross your fingers you don't get this, haha.

I've never been one to crave for Sabah Fish but this one was grilled to perfection - best I've ever eaten and won't mind eating it again!

In between we get a lot of mini fillers like this deep fried fish skin which is also super yummy! Salty, airy and crispy. More pleaseee.

We also get conversational pieces like these deep fried, caramelised crickets (or grasshoppers???) We eat them cause YOLO / we paid for it anyway, haha. Not something I would choose to do on my own off a menu, but that's the point of omakase! Because it's so sweet and caramelized, it doesn't taste like insect. Not bad for my first creepy crawly experience.

I always appreciate a thick slab of uni (sea urchin). This one was presented to us perched on a slice of tuna. We all agreed that the uni wasn't the freshest - you can tell when you taste too much of the sea, but I would say for the cost we paid for the meal, it's alright.

You get the sense that everything is little rushed. It would have been nice if they had stopped to really explain to us each dish before throwing spoons of unknown items to us. Fortunately this dish didn't need much explaining because it's... foie gras and scallop! The foie is perfectly pan-seared, warm, and fatty; and eating it with the raw, cold scallop gave it another dimension. Wish I took a better picture, but everyone was waiting, haha. Best dish of the night tho'.

So at the start of our session they put this glass tank of little live crabs in front of us which are entertaining to watch. These little guys get to live for that night, but their friends... not so much! Joel puts them next to each other to show them their DOOM, haha. Taste wise it was nice. Buttery and crispy, you can eat them whole - shell and all!

Huh. Don't remember eating this. Guess it didn't make much of an impression to me.

Gosh, looking at this dish makes my blood boil!!! As I can't eat the wagyu beef, this was my replacement - some pork lump that was dry, overcooked and not even tasty. Like they slapped it together last minute for second class eaters??? I should have just picked the wagyu to give to Justin and at least gotten more value out of it. Didn't finish this dish. Should have sent it back on hindsight.

Justin says the wagyu wasn't much either. Points for the cow head they made of the raw wagyu though? :\

Palette cleanser. At first it looks like it's water droplets on it that make it glisten, but it's actually the leaf itself! We eat it raw.

Hairy crab soup - it had this really strong citrusy taste and Justin couldn't stand it, but I thought it was OK. The crab was funny to touch since it was hairy and didn't have much meat. Actually it was a struggle to open it up because it wasn't already "crushed" for us so I had to use my fingers to really press hard - and for not much reward, boo.

Good things come with blowtorches, whee. This is our "mains" - we get a choice between 3 dishes, but this is definitely the most value since I'm all about raw fish. Edwina picked the fried rice, which she didn't finish because we were quite full by then!

Kinda wish we had these earlier so I could appreciate them more. It isn't SUPER charred with that nice burnt, blow-torch taste, but I can appreciate that the ingredients are definitely more "premium" than just your usual run off the mill sushi.

Sorry to keep harping on this, but I feel like the purpose of a tasting menu is to open your eyes to other kinds of Japanese food that you would normally not pick yourself, and this is all defeated by the lack of explanation and menu given to us. Even if I found something new I liked, I wouldn't know what it is and be able to order it myself in the future!

Dessert time! They have a lot of very Japanese-esque flavours like sesame and yuzu, but I pick salted caramel because apparently it's good. It's not bad! But a nice way to round up the meal.

Overall, I feel like I did have a pretty entertaining, new experience at Teppei and I always love variety in a meal. I suppose they didn't give the menu because they wanted everything to be a surprise - but maybe they could give it at the end? The ingredients were premium but not the freshest and best of the premium. However at $80.00++ for the whole meal (they also have $50.00 and $60.00 sets), it is very affordable compared to other Japanese restaurants which these tasting menus can go up way higher in price.

Reservations for the next quarter of the year open in September, so I think it's worth a try at least once!

Teppei Japanese Restaurant
Address: Orchid Hotel, 1 Tras Link,
#01-18, Singapore 078867
Contact: +65 6222 7363


Anonymous said...

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