Nakasei Sushi Restaurant is a relatively low profile restaurant in Central Mall, off Havelock Road and close to the Singapore Chinatown area. We were there to try their lunch menus which we heard were very good. Apparently it is said to be a “good food no frills” kind of place. It was not an easy restaurant to find even after we arrived at Central Mall. But eventually we found it. The entrance and decor of the restaurant were simple and unpretentious. It would be too harsh to describe it as a “no frills” restaurant. “Low frills” is more accurate as it is quite a pleasant restaurant. The important question is – how is the food?
Nakasei Sushi Restaurant is quite small. There are about 10 seats at the sushi counter, a few small tables in the general area and a few private rooms. It is a down-to-earth place as there are few adornments. It was quiet at lunch time with only seven other patrons at the restaurant.
The menu at Nakasei Sushi Restaurant is a simple one. It appears that the set lunch menus ($15 to $38) are the popular items for lunch. For dinner, the omakase menus ($98 to $230) are the way to go. Here are some selected pages from the menu.
Out of curiosity, we tried two appetizers – fried small shrimps and deep-fried baby sardines. The shrimps are common but the baby sardines was a first for us. Crisp with the natural taste of seafood they were a nice way to start the meal. I can imagine that they will go well with a beer or sake.
For the lunch proper, we selected the assorted Chirashi ($38) and the sushi and tempura set ($38). We had expected the chirashi to be the usual slices of sashimi spread over a bowl of rice. But were pleasantly surprised to see the sashimi pieces served separately from the rice. This was a much more attractive way to eat the food. The sashimi was fresh and the portion was generous.
Likewise, the sushi part of the other lunch set was served in a large round platter. We would have been happy to have that served as lunch. But there was the other plate of tempura. The tempura portion was more modest but the prawn was quite large and had good texture.
The raw fish in both dishes were good. They look good with a healthy translucent sheen. The texture was firm and fresh. We think this is good quality sushi at an appropriate price.
Overall, we thought that Nakasei Sushi Restaurant sits in the middle between the mass market Japanese restaurants and the top flight (and very expensive) restaurants. $38 is not cheap for a set lunch as there are many choices for the ordinary patrons these days. But for the quality and quantity, we thought it was a pretty fair deal.
Overall Rating: 3 TOPs
Nakasei Sushi Restaurant
1 Magazine Road # 01-06 / 07 Central Mall
Tel : +65 6836-5325
Nearby Stations : Clarke Quay Station