A few days back, K and I had to go out to get our passport photos clicked for some application. We went to this mall called Nex at Serangoon. The lady at the studio informed us that she will need about 20 mins to develop the photo.
K was in his usual “I want to try something different today” mood. This boy is always in a “I want something different” and thank God for variety because it does become hard otherwise to find “something different” everyday!
K wanted me to try Ramen and had been raving about the same for a while now. Unfortunately, all the Ramen they had had a pork base soup and we did not try any of it. The restaurant guy was too sweet when he added, “But we are keeping in mind the needs of the vegetarian and will soon have something yummy”. He said it with a twinkle in his eye that I am trying to mimic but just cannot.
K then took me to a small town of sorts inside the mall itself where there are several Japanese eateries. I love Japanese food – especially their tempura and have had a harrowing experience with the wasabi as well. The first time I was at Sakae Sushi, I was eating some egg sushi and I needed something spicy, I took a big lump of wasabi and popped it in. What ensued was rainfall and flood from my eyes. I never ever ever had thought that wasabi could be a potent tool of mass destruction.
We got pretty excited thinking of what we could eat. I know that I am doing my best to portray ourselves as not just foodies but live-to-eat-never-forget-that types. Kya karoon control hi nahin hota and all that.
We walked in and found a nice little place that had vegetarian options. This place specializes in soba and was called “Shimbashi Soba“. Soba means buckwheat in Japanese and refers to think noodles made from buckwheat. If you curious to know more about it, you may want to read this .
We loved how the place looked. So cozy and such a lovely feel to it .
After looking at the menu, we tried to guage the taste and excitement quotient of the food through their descriptions. After placing the orders, we settled down to reading their write-up on soba when they served us green tea. We ordered the unlimited supply of green tea.
The hand-out had some illustrations on how drawing out soba requires a high level of craftsmanship because it is a form of art in several ways. It is always so interesting to read about these little knicky-knacky tid bits.
Isn’t the container beautiful? It so fell in line with the theme and the surroundings.
To be honest, this kind of tea does require some degree of “acquiring a taste” on your part. I usually associate tea with milk and so always want milk tea as my first choice – the sweet milk masala chai. But now, over time, I have gotten to a better point on the familiarity scale for several hundred varieties of tea served across different parts. The first few sips seemed a bit bland but it got better later. I did not use my unlimited supply though. Maybe eventually I will.
Then came K’s soba!
K ordered chilled soba. This one was called Tenchirashi soba chilled noodle with tempura. It had chilled soba underneath and blanketed with lots of crispy tempura. It looked yummy maybe because I love tempura so much. This one had seafood and so I did not really taste it. Anyways, even if it did not, I don’t think K would have agreed to share this with me. We usually wait for our food to arrive before deciding to share – if we love our food too much, we declare a “no sharing” and later proceed to still nibble each others’ plate out. We are so shameless, I tell you!
And then mine made a grand entry.
I ordered warm soba. Mine was called Yuba and kinoko healthy soba. It looked really yummy. I guess I am still developing the taste for appreciating soba but I loved the beancurd skin they had dunked in the soup. There was a whole bunch of baby button mushrooms that had a nice texture and were tasty as well. They also give finely chopped spring onion to go with it and that’s an awesome combo altogether! I had also asked for a soft boiled egg and it was a lovely combo. Just that, when I ran out of egg and the beancurd skin (K took 2 pieces, I counted), life became a bit dull on the soba front. If I were the chef, I’d add in some more beancurd skin though!
K loved his tempura and I could hear him go crunch-munch-crunch-munch. He kind of made sure that I heard him crunch by chewing near my ear from time to time. I felt J and could only wave my egg yolk hapelessly.
We had a good time here. The staff are friendly and take in special requests like a top-up egg or some soy etc. even if it does not come alongside the dish.
P.S. Starting from this one, I plan to start sharing my experiences in different eateries and restaurant reviews (if you can call them that).