Inspired by our recent meal at Tomi Sushi, we decided to try another of the Japanese restaurants in Millenia Walk. This time it was Sandaime Bunji. It is located at street level facing Conrad Hotel. Its traditional wooden shop front was what caught our attention. Its specialities were Japanes oden and gyutan (ox tongue). The latter was not something we eat everyday. Another reason to try out this Japanese restaurant!
The inside of Sandaime Bunji has the dark cosy feel of a small restaurant in Japan. There are seating options at some regular small tables and along the large counter where customers can have a close up view of the open plan kitchen. I am all for open kitchens as the cooking can provide some entertainment while one waits. But this one was a bit too open. All the pots and pans and storage were displayed in full view.
The menu of Sandaime Bunji was not extensive but contains a variety of grilled, fried and other kinds of Japanese food. There were some set lunch options. We decided on a Sendai Gyutan Steak & Oden Set ($30.90) and an assortment of other food from the ala carte menu.
We thought that the Gyutan and Oden set meal should be good as it featured the two main specialities at Sandaime Bunji. The set was served attractively enough. Some slices of tongue, a pot of oden, some small appetizers, a bowl of clear soup and rice.
I must admit the thought of eating a cow’s tongue is not an appealing one but fortunately the gyutan looked like a regular plate of meat. Different parts of the tongue seem to have different textures. Some pieces had very beef-like textures. Some pieces had chewy edges, which we were not particularly fond of as it reminded us of what we were eating. Overall, we discovered that we are not ox-tongue fans. It tasted like beef but with some chewy bits. Other than the novelty factor, we would not choose to eat ox tongue over regular beef.
The pot of oden looked strangely unexciting, given that this was a oden restaurant. The pieces of oden and the soup tasted very bland.
Fortunately, the miscellaneous items we randomly ordered looked and tasted more interesting. The Atsuage Tofu ($9.90) reminded us of local ‘tau pok’. it was very good. The garnishes on top of it gave it a fresh taste.
The deep-fried oysters ($13.90) were quite nice. Three fat juicy oysters fried in batter. A good dish to eat with beer or sake.
Our last dish was dashimaki tamago ($8.90). This was a type of Japanese omelette which was apparently very labour intensive to make as the eggs had to be cooked and folded in many layers. It was good and the portion was very big.
Overall, we like Sandaime Bunji because of its very traditional authentic Japanese small restaurant decor. We are not crazy about their two special items – ox tongue and the oden as what we tried that day was so-so. But we will return for their other items which are good companions for sake.
Overall Rating: 3 TOPs
#01-14/15 Millenia Walk
9 Raffles Boulevard
Tel : +65 6333 1516
Opening Hours :
Mon-Fri: 11:30 am – 3:00 pm; 5:00 pm – 11:00 pm
Sat: 11:30 am – 11:00 pm
Sun: 11:30 am – 9:00 pm
Nearby Stations: Promenade, Esplanade