En Sakaba Izakaya and Bistro is a relatively new restaurant that opened in the Jem mall in Jurong East. It is located on the ground floor near the walkway that links to next door mall, Westgate. En Sakaba Jem takes over the space that was previously occupied by Mado Cafe.
En Sakaba Jem is decorated like a Japanese izakaya, except that it is brighter than a typical one. Sufficient bottles of sake were displayed all over the restaurant to remind customers that drinking is one of the main reasons to visit an izakaya. There is an air-conditioned section and a larger external area. As En Sakaba is located along the link between Jem and Westgate, an outdoor table provides an excellent vantage point to people-watch.
We believe the drinking probably starts after sundown. In the afternoon, En Sakaba Jem offers a wide range of set lunch items, mostly priced at $15 each. Here are pictures of the set lunch menu. We tried the Kuobuta don and the Yakiniku don lunch sets ($15 each).
En Sakaba Jem Set Lunch Menu
The sets come with a small salad and a clam soup. The yakiniku was better than we had expected. The slices of beef were cooked very well on the outside, imparting a burnt smoky flavour. The inside was still slightly pink and moist. Having a soft runny egg (which is served for both dishes) was a good idea as it provided a tasty ‘gravy’ to bind the rice and pieces of meat.
The Kurobuta don was not bad – slices of braised pork on a bowl of rice with a runny egg. The pork itself was good and cooked till soft. But we thought that the sauce was too sweet. The yakiniku don was the better dish.
Overall, the new En Sakaba Jem izakaya and bistro is a welcome addition to the Jem / Westgate dining options. It is a pleasant simple place and quiet during lunch time.
Overall Rating: 3 TOPs
En Sakaba Izakaya
50 Jurong Gateway Road
Tel: +65 62620238
Nearby MRT Station : Jurong East