Koji Sushi Bar 米花 – Beautiful Bara Chirashi under $20!

Koji Sushi Bar 米花

#01-42 Nankin Row, 3 Pickering Street near Raffles Place MRT

IMG_7843Small menu, small space, small pricing but Big taste Koji 米花 Sushi Bar has! Literally a hole in the wall, Koji is known for its inexpensive sets (mostly at $17) that would make you walk off with a satisfied tummy. Now freshness is a given for most better-than-average sushi joints these days if they wish to survive in the increasingly competitive food scene in Sg. And this may really be the lowest criterion that one would consider today as a good bowl of chirashi or sashimi as our tastebuds become progressively discerning. What might have overtaken freshness as the first priority would perhaps be the treatment of these fishes (Eg, how long should the fish be aged so that its flavour would improve) and the cuts used by the chef.

IMG_7838And I believe at such a humble price, Koji must have chosen a prudent balance among the aforementioned criteria that resulted in their famous piquant Bara Chirashi donburi. Topped generously with many different kinds of raw fishes such as salmontuna, swordfish, Negitoro and Ikura, this rice bowl indeed exudes a medley of different textures and sweetness that would keep your senses wide awake.

IMG_7836Their luscious Salmon Rice Bowl was made even creamier and seductive by glazing it with mashed avocado and S simply concluded that it was a bowl of unexpectedly extraordinary Salmon goodness.

IMG_7834

IMG_7835This cup of acute Century Egg Chawanmushi may perhaps be the most intense one that I’ve ever tasted as it felt as though 20 century eggs were concentrated in the layer of black relish above the silky chawanmushi. Though it may be a small cup for $4, it was really the first starter that made us pay serious attention to the rest of the meal.

IMG_7842On top of the sashimi rice bowls, Koji also serves 3 different types of Sushi Set. Though they were good, they didn’t taste as exceptional as the rice bowls as the latter feels more characteristic of koji.

Koji1So you may be wondering now is the chef Japanese? But does it matter if the food is so authentic and marvelous that you may most likely plan for a revisit, especially for those working in the vicinity. I am quite pleasantly surprised that minute details were not overlooked as the group of non-Japanese chefs were evidently conscientiously perfecting their dainty presentation throughout our dinner.

Verdict: An excellent restaurant.

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