ITO-KACHO at 333A Orchard Road, #04-08/09 Mandarin Gallery
Kudos to the kind folks of HGW for organizing & inviting me for the review session
On hearing that the venue is located at Mandarin Gallery, the 1st thought that came to mind was to expect that this joint is not a small timer. This is their ground breaker on this island (the 1st stop beyond the shores of Japan), and given their substance, I look forward to more outlets sprouting in due time.
Be advised that you would be presented a mixture of Japanese yakiniku, accompanied with Korean condiments & sides, in lieu of the Japanese-Korean management’s vision & direction.
Namuru Moriawase (cinnamon fern, white raddish, spinach & bean sprouts) – another variant of pickles that get the palates worked up & raring to go.Dashimaki Tamago (Japanese omelette) – a definite hit with the younger ones, as well as those with lesser threshold for spice
The salad that follows is no ordinary potato salad. The Jikasei Potato salad is a good mix of mush & crunch, spotting slices & shreds of carrots & radishes, topped with some strips of crunchy bacon.
Served up shortly are 3 choice cuts of beef air-flown chilled (not frozen), freshness & tenderness is what you’ll be getting. Not having the thawing process in the pipeline means, there is not unnecessary loss of juices as well.
- Wagyu Tomo-Bara – fast to cook on the grill, very buttery texture that almost melts in the mouth
- Wagyu Kainomi – the slightly less fatty portion, tender and sweet
- US Jo-karubi – imagine tiny strip of tenderloin, except is a little lighter & more tender for the jaw exercise.
Tsubo-Zuke Korubuta – the pork collar is nicely marinated for taste, good enough to be eaten without the dips. A distanced variant to the Thai styled BBQ pork collar (cut after meat is cooked over the grill)
Kaisen Moriawase – assorted seafood (king crab, giant tiger prawns, Hokkaido scallop & squid). The king crab claws & legs are pre-cooked & shell pre-broken, making it easier for picking. The giant tiger prawns are halved & gutted halving the time taken to cook. The scallops & squid are neatly packed in an aluminum tray decked with leaks & garnish to neutralize the sea flavor, resulting in a sweet broth after cooked
Ishiyaki Bimbibap – rice, minced meat, Namurus topped with shredded dry seaweed, sesame seeds, covered with a fresh egg, served in a sizzling hot stone bowl. Best savored after the content is evenly stirred & folded, and you’ll get to enjoy of its goodness.
Desserts are choices of ice cream (topped with Azuki beans) – vanilla, maccha (green tea), Kuri (Black Sesame), Kuogoma (Chestnut). My picks would have to be; Kuri & Kurogoma.
True meat-arians & foodies looking for orient flavor will love this joint.