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5 Must-Tries From Japan Foods Garden

Feast on unagi from a heritage restaurant, ‘black’ curry rice, freshly made soba and more

Photos: Japan Foods Garden

The latest Japanese food enclave to open its doors may be nicely tucked away at Shaw Centre’s Food Republic, but is no less of a gem.

Housing a cosy cluster of five concept stalls, Japan Foods Garden offers the opportunity to savour a variety of affordable dishes at a go — all the better for lunch or dinner khakis to share.

Despite the no-frills setting, the quality of the dishes, some of which hail straight from the Land of the Rising Sun, left us considerably impressed.

We ate our way through all five stalls and couldn’t help but play flavourites.

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1. Akasaka Yukun

Must-try: Unagi Seiro Mushi

At Akasaka Yukun, one first gets a whiff of the savoury-sweet and tender slabs of eel before even catching sight of it. First founded in Kurume, Kyushu in 1952, the heritage restaurant specialises in steamed eel dishes, with eight outlets across Japan. As its first overseas branch, its stall at Japan Foods Garden looks set to be a popular fixture.

Among the highly recommended dishes is their signature Unagi Seiro Mushi (1 Layer, $28.80 or 2 Layers, $38.80), a famed Kyushu delicacy comprising chunks of eel and finely sliced egg omelette on a bed of seasoned rice.

If you’re used to the taste of grilled eel, Yukun’s steamed rendition will taste exceptionally soft and most. Made with a recipe that’s been closely guarded for over 60 years and passed down through three generations, the eel is glazed with a sticky-sweet sauce and served in a bamboo box for a slight hint of woody fragrance.

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