Near Tiong Bahru MRT
The entrance to Bincho
Thanks to Hazeldiary and Denise for the kind invitation to Bincho. I have learnt quite a lot of interesting things from this yakitori restaurant and It’s the first time that I felt compelled to post more photos of the interior of a restaurant. As we may have already known about the peculiarity of this restaurant, that is its a wanton mee stall in the day but turns into a Japanese yakitori hang out as soon as the sun starts to set, this is indeed an intriguing restaurant concept to most. Quality set lunches are also served at Bincho which are priced at a very reasonable $20 to $30! Now, lets take a look at how the interior is structured. It is in general, divided into three sections, with the first throwing you back into the retro sixties.
The second section consists mainly of the counter seats, where you can have a closer look at the friendly chef Asai in action. Look out for his really cute ceramic knife if you get to sit in front of him.
And this the third section in front of the bar counter has a futuristic vibe to its decoration. I especially love the ergonomically designed seats as it’s quite comfy to just sit there, lean back and relax.
And then, we were served with a mix of courses from different set menus which was very educational and exciting.
The yuzu cocktail to start with. Slightly strong on the alcohol, the yuzu and mint helps to make this cocktail really refreshing. Going through the drinks menu, you would realise that the cocktails served here are definitely not so straightforward as each cocktail seems to have a few distinctive flavours in it.
It’s my first time having raw corn and it really is smacking delicious, juicy and sweet. Only available during the summer season, this is currently air flown in from Hokkaido. Sounds like the Sakura season doesn’t it whereby the import comes from the south and goes northwards as we get into the later part of the year.
From the mixed appetiser, we have the edamame tamago, mizuna oyitashi, chicken liver pate and salmon nimono. The edamame was made savoury by mixing tamago with it while the favourite dish from this platter was the smooth, savoury chicken liver pate as it has mirin added to it. This helps to remove any strong irony flavour from the liver and made it even more palatable and delicious.
Super fresh sashimi served over here as it is has a very good consistency. Denise taught me that the flower petals can be added to your shoyu first to give it a light fragrance while a little bit of freshly grated wasabi could be placed on the fish first before dipping in the sauce. In other words, I did it slightly in a wrong way as I dumped my wasabi in. haha! Something new learnt over here!
Just like the Thai have their own stuffed chicken wings, chef Asai also invented his own rendition. Stuffed with mentaiko, you could taste the bitty mentaiko popping in your mouth when you bite into the crispy fragrant wing. It was however a tad salty for me.
Akakonyaku kurobuta roll. Yes, a dessert element (konyaku) in a savoury dish, this dish won me over with its interesting combination of consistency and texture. This konyaku is red (aka) in colour and is only available in the kyoto region, so people from Tokyo may not have heard of it according to the chef. The konyaku there is really Q and springy and I love this texture within the aromatic grilled pork. The sauce that comes with it is made from egg yolk soaked in soy sauce for a day and makes each roll even more flavourful. Yummy!
We got the yakitori platter as well with chicken neck, breast, wings and thigh served while the condiments there are wasabi, yuzu pepper, mushroom salt, five spices, Japanese mustard and wholegrain mustard. These chickens are painstakingly sourced from Johor that are fed with quality feed. They are then slaughtered in Singapore so as to retain its freshness and that shows how sincere the chef is in bringing fresh chicken meat to the table.
Tomatoes? Yes, but really high quality sweet tomatoes with onion sauce. These tomatoes are unusually sweet and definitely could not be bought from the supermarkets here. Indeed, they must have been imported from Japan.
Tsukune with egg yolk. I love the moist texture of the tsukune as chicken neck meat is used over here while the thick egg yolk gives this teriyaki dish an addictive eggy touch. This could easily be slotted into two buns and transform into a memorable burger I felt.
So, after the whole meal, I got to understand more of the never-ending, interesting ingredients that Japan always has to offer. Most importantly, you could also feel the sincerity of chef Asai when it comes to the planning of each dish, whereby he would take the source, the intriguing characteristics of each ingredients into great consideration before blending them together and presenting in front of you an impeccable dish that would wow your senses. Typical of a Japanese chef, creativity is definitely displayed over here despite being just a yakitori restaurant. This explains the slightly more premium prices that you would be paying for but I guess that wouldn’t hurt once in a while. And yes, not to forget that the interestingly designed interior also plays a part in making this meal wholesome and fun! So once again, would like to thank Hazeldiary and Denise for the kind invitation!