Quite OK Bento Lunch @ The Flying Squirrel on 21Oct2014

summer chirashi don set (S$25)

summer chirashi don set (S$25)

had dental appointment today. i was in the good hands of a close friend. 🙂

post dental, 3 of us went to lunch nearby at the flying squirrel at amoy street on 21.10.2014. 🙂 the restaurant has like a hidden side road entrance, not accessible from the front.

parking at amoy street, telok ayer street & boon tat street was tricky, but we were there past 1pm and cars were moving off, & i managed to find a good lot at boon tat street.

10712788_10152775031899494_8442945409488678858_n

The Flying Squirrel, Amoy Street

10698591_10152775032144494_2720219110651893714_n

The Flying Squirrel, Amoy Street

summer chirashi don set (S$25)

summer chirashi don set (S$25)

my daughter has been talking about this place & sushi kou & i wanted to try the chirashi don. there was only a summer cchirashi don set (S$25) on the menu. i took that & my friends ordered ebi furai bento (S$19) & tori karaage bento (S$19).

when the food arrived, it looked to me like a bara chirashi don with diced sashimi, which usually was of lower quality than a chirashi don. i asked the server & he said there was actually another ala carte chirashi don for both lunch & dinner (guess it was on another separate menu) but he said this lunch set was popular. 🙂

the service was pleasant & attentive & there had a hand-written welcome card at the reserved table, so i decided to just go with the bara chirashi don.

taste-wise it was pretty good, and the sashimi quantity was good too. it also had 3 pieces of chicken karaage (not my favourite) & salad. still, this was not quite comparable to the S$20 quality chirashi don set at kuroson. and overall presentation wise, food quality & quantity it was not quite the standard of bara chirashi don & salmon set at sun with moon wheelock.

ebi furai bento (S$18)

ebi furai bento (S$19)

tori karaage bento (S$18)

tori karaage bento (S$19)

my friends were happy with their tori karaage bento & ebi furai bento which came with curry.

there was 10% service but no GST.

overall, the lunch was quite average for me, something doable but not special. my sashimi cuts were fresh & sweet, and the rice combination was quite good, & service was pleasant & good.  i may still come back to try their ala cate chirashi don during dinner. 🙂

c.h.e.f andy

Very Good Dinner @ Fukuichi Level 2 Triple One on 30Oct2013

good bento S$40

good bento S$40

very good friend of mine insisted on buying me birthday dinner. i had many meals already last few days so suggested crystal jade lamian xiaolongbao etc. he would have none of it. he wanted to go nandaman or keyaki. i was not keen for him to spend money at those places (nandaman i didn’t want to go at all, and i would only go for nice sunday brunch mini kaiseki at keyaki &  very occasionally for kaiseki dinner depending on what was served on the menu). i told him if he was buying me dinner he should at least listen to what i wanted, but he just waived away & said when i made those suggestions, it was to be discounted & not to be listened to..hahaha. 🙂 anyway the compromise was fukuichi. 🙂
Fukuichi was located at level 2 of triple one. we arranged to meet at 8pm on 30.10.2013 as he had to finish a phone conference. i was having repeated problems with my dell pc even though it was only 1.5yrs into a 3yr warranty & the motherboard had already changed once. i had to make 3 factory image restore and wasted away hours. that was the last straw & i decided to get a mac. i arrived 20mins early & walked over to epicentre @ 313 just across the road. good side trip & i kind of decided on which mac i wanted. 🙂
fukuichi @ triple one level 2

fukuichi @ triple one level 2

fukuichi @ triple one level 2

fukuichi @ triple one level 2

kobachi - complimentary chopped tuna appetizer

kobachi – complimentary chopped tuna appetizer

salad with ponzu dressing

salad with ponzu dressing

bento (sashimi, sushi, maki)

bento (sashimi, sushi, maki)

kani tofu

kani tofu S$6

hoba beef S$38

beef hobayaki S$38

hoba beef

beef hobayaki S$38

we decided to order a bento each. my friend was not satisfied & insisted to order a sake (he was evidently in greater birthday mood than i & took 90% of the sake as i told him he would)  & beef hobayaki S$38. i ordered a S$6 kani tofu to share as i read about it & wanted to try.

we were served a complimentary kobachi to get started – a small dish with chopped tuna. this was tasty, a good appetizer. the bento also came with a salad, simple cut cabbage that was very refreshing & enjoyable with the ponzu dressing. the kani tofu (basically pitan tofu with crabmeat) was good, tasty though i thought the one with tobiko at hokkaido sushi was better.

the bento was good quality. the sashimi (maguro, ika, sake) were all very sweet. the sushi & maki were competent. the pan-fried salmon was good, very tasty. the tempura were above average. 🙂

the beef (aussie) hobayaki(朴叶烧) with shitake mushrooms was quite good. i first came across this preparation at takayama. the local hida beef (飞弹牛) was an excellent wagyu, and was served on a magnolia leaf (朴叶). i would rate this beef as equal to that served at dozo, not as good quality as that served at the clan. 🙂

in all, a very enjoyable dinner. though we meet often, we had very good chat before calling it quits for the night.

c.h.e.f andy

Bad Food in Japan? @ Tateyama Murodou Sansou on 12Oct2013

dinner @ tateyama murodou sansou

dinner @ tateyama murodou sansou

recently a friend was relating his experience to izu several years back when it was hit by earthquake (i think it was 2009). they were rushing for the train & had bad food then. a few of us were surprised that one could have bad food in japan as even the cheap train station bentos & supermarket food were all pretty good.

well now i had my own experience of singularly bad food at tateyama murodou sansou (立山室堂山庄) – or google translate to mountain hut. the food was downright sucky. i guess it was to be expected as it was more like a “mountain hut”, and in fact a rather cosy place for serious trekkers c/w camping in the mountains, except that we paid 22000yen for 1 night with 2 meals for a room with no attached toilet & they gave you 1 face towel (no bath towel) for the onsen bath.

tempura

tempura

pickles

pickles

grilled salmon

grilled salmon

looking at the dinner items, i would not pay 1000yen for it & many 1000yen bentos would be better. in fact the same kitchen was open till 3pm & we had a very passable curry rice for 700yen (& the same with soba & gyudon ie beef on rice etc) which would be as good as the tempura, salmon & rice with pickles for dinner. compare this with the kaiseki dinner @ greenview-tateyama which cost 25000yen for 2pax with attached toilet & bath & 2 meals, and with a good size yu 湯 (japanese for hot water ie onsen baths). or with senjusou which costs 15800yen, equally basic but far better dinner & breakfast meals.

breakfast @ tateyama murodou sansou

breakfast @ tateyama murodou sansou

another grilled salmon

another grilled salmon

breakfast was an equally bad affair.

the place was ran by a team of youngsters like students, with only 1 older man in the kitchen & 1 at the front desk. it was efficiently run though and service was polite & competent. everything is relative, so i guess a hut is a luxury c/w camping in the mountains but it is also relative to price. to me the 2 meals should be charged at no more than 2000yen pax & the room maybe 8000yen so it should be more like 12000yen than 22000yen.  still this was 2450m, and not so many options available (we could not get the tateyama hotel at murodou station & raichoso would really be a bad choice some distance up the mountain route).

in the end it is all about matching needs. for those doing serious trekking and rather not camp out, there would be reason to take this option. in our case for the current trip, we needed no more than 2hrs to walk around the ponds route & overlooking the hell’s valley(& likewise 2hrs max for the boardwalks at midagahara), so we would be better off just passing through midagahara & murodou on a day trip. rather than staying at tateyama or midagahara or murodou, we would be better off staying at toyama & omachi onsen ryokans. if we should decide to do more serious trekking, we could then plan differently & perhaps we could still stay here but LESS the meals. i would much rather have a 700yen gyudon from their kitchen & a soba from murodou station. 🙂

c.h.e.f andy