Diners in Singapore can now enjoy real Japanese wagyu at affordable prices, with the launch of the two concepts, The Container Japanese Wagyu Tapas & Cocktail Bar, and Aburiya Yakiniku Japanese Wagyu Yakiniku.
Located at Boat Quay with a full view of the scenic Singapore River view, the two F&B concepts are backed by a restaurant conglomerate in Japan that owns over 80 restaurants throughout Japan.
To offer quality Japanese wagyu dining experiences at affordable prices, the restaurant group works directly with wagyu farmers in Japan to ensure full control of quality. The entire cow is imported to Singapore, and the team at The Container and Aburiya have adopted a nose to tail approach, utilising as many parts of the cow as possible for their dishes.
The group also has an in-house beef specialist, Shingo Nakamura, who’s based in Yokohama and travels through the prefectures in Japan to handpick wagyu farmers to establish working relationships with, and to understand their breeding methods. For the Singapore concepts, he is currently working with farmers in Hokkaido, Japan.
Shingo Nakamura also develops the beef training programme, and flies to Singapore regularly to train the team in the know-how, preparation and cooking techniques.
The Container Japanese Wagyu Tapas & Cocktail Bar
A brand new concept developed to present Japanese wagyu in a modern light, The Container Japanese Wagyu Tapas & Cocktail Bar offers a range of contemporary, innovative tapas to feature the quality of Japanese wagyu. For example, The Smokin’ Wagyu Carpaccio ($19) is a visual feast, with slices of thinly cut wagyu carpaccio presented in a bell jar, and smoked with sakura wood chips. Another must-try is the refreshing Wagyu Galareta ($14), made with wagyu broth jelly paired with ponzu sauce.
Other than Japanese wagyu tapas, there are also non-beef selections, such as Pan-seared Oysters with Strawberry Foam ($5 per piece) and Braised Pork Ribs ($12/$19) slow-cooked till the bones are tender soft.
One of the key highlights at The Container is the Japanese-inspired drinks list. One of the signatures,the Wagyu Whisky ($14) , is a sustainable effort that uses the wagyu fat from the kitchen to fatwash with whisky. Each batch of Wagyu Whisky is freshly prepared each week, with the fat-washing method lending a smokey hint and fuller texture to the final tipple.
Aburiya Japanese Wagyu Yakiniku @Boat Quay
With more than 37 Japanese beef choices on the menu ranging from sirloin, oyster blade, tongue to intestine, mixed and family platters, Aburiya Japanese Wagyu Yakiniku Restaurant @ Boat Quay aims to offer an authentic Japanese yakiniku dining experience for all at affordable prices.
The Moriawase Family Platter offers great value, by featuring a mixture of end cuts of real Japanese wagyu and Tokachi (a cross breed of Japanese wagyu and Holstein cow from the Tokachi city of Hokkaido) beef (150g – $24, 250g – $40, 350g -$54, 500g – $77).
For a taste of raw Japanese wagyu, which is usually the ultimate mark of freshness, try the Aburiya Yukke ($18, wagyu kone brisket), or the Wagyu Negishio Yukke ($18, a leaner version of the wagyu tartare).
To enjoy a real treat, go for the Wagyu Tokusen Misuji ( $28), the oyster blade, a rare cut as every wagyu cow offers up only 3 kg of this cut.
While the wagyu beef plays an integral role in the yakiniku experience, it’s the details that make the difference. Aburiya prepares their two Aburiya sauces in-house – a soy-based and a ponzu based selection, to enhance the flavours of the grilled Japanese wagyu beef.
Rice is also treated with utmost respect in the kitchen. The Donabe Gohan rice ($12 – $19) is slowly cooked in traditional earthen pots imported from Japan, to attain the right al dente texture. Each order takes 20 – 30 minutes of preparation.
To ensure that diners enjoy the best yakiniku experience, Aburiya uses a unique customised grilling system made in Japan that filters smoke. It also uses only “white charcoal” made from specially sourced bincho wood that requires hours of preparation. As compared to the usual black charcoal, white charcoal contains much less water or tar, allowing the guest to achieve a better texture when grilling the beef, and less smokiness during the yakiniku experience.
Aburiya also boasts several private rooms, ideal for entertaining and celebrations. The hot favourite is the Tea Ceremony Room, a traditional room inspired by the tea ceremony sessions that samurais in ancient times used to attend. Tea Ceremony room sports a low door, which forces samurais to remove all weapons before entering. The room is also equipped with an open window at the top, which, in the past, allowed someone stationed outside to keep an eye on the action in the room.