Turning Japanese at Ion
Exploring Ion, that fancy mall along Orchard Road, yielded pleasant surprises. The Food Hall at its basement offered a selection of Japanese food stalls. Pad, who joined me for the second half of the trip, is a major tonkatsu fan. So, eating at Ginza Bairin, a big Japanese chain that specializes in tonkatsu, was essential.
Established in 1927, Ginza Bairin takes pride in using the choicest pork loins for an outstanding flavor, aroma and texture. Sure enough, the pork was more tender than most tonkatsu, and the sauce was better than your usual bottled tonkatsu sauce.
While I had the standard tonkatsu set, served with rice and a flavorful pork and konnyaku soup, Pad opted for the Curry Katsu set. Smartly enough, they keep the katsu away from the sauce, so it doesn’t get soggy, allowing the diners to do this themselves.
All in, it was a pleasant meal, but I’m not quite sure whether it was worth the price. It was pretty pricey, for a simple tonkatsu meal—probably due to the aforementioned “choicest ingredients.” Or perhaps my perception has been spoiled majorly by all the delightful meals I’ve had, for below 5 SGD at the hawker centers? Not that I regret eating there. I just probably won’t do it again, unless somebody else is paying.
Best 7″ Hotdogs!
Or so, the signboard at Sand Bar, a little kiosk along the Sentosa beach advertises. We were looking for cheap eats plus a place to sit, so we decided to grab their paired hotdogs. Despite the claim, we weren’t expecting much, so when these super yummy hotdogs came out, I was floored.
These thick hotdogs were so juicy and flavorful, packed in a crisp casing and a really soft, toasted, buttered bun. After taking a single bite, I easily agreed. This was among the best hotdog sandwiches I’ve eaten.
Snacking at the Airport
Time sure flies and unfortunately, I wasn’t able to visit a decent kopitiam during my stay! I made sure to grab some at the airport, but sadly, it wasn’t as good as the ones I’ve tried before. We snacked on some bread and sandwiches we brought from Takashimaya’s basement—the bread store’s name escapes me, but it was a Japanese brand and was set-up like Bread Talk.
I had one major triumph at the airport though, and that was being able to grab a couple of bottles of All’s Well Water Chestnut and Sugarcane Drink. One of my favorite, must-have drinks when in Singapore, I made sure to grab some at the terminal’s convenience store and had it sealed to be carried on the plane. The way some people would buy duty-free liquor, I buy water chestnut. *sigh*