Japanese Happiness by Evan Mua | Japanese | Burpple
Japanese Happiness

Japanese Happiness

Featuring Una Una (Bugis+), Drunken Farmer (Joo Chiat), Gyu & Tori (Paragon), Kanada-Ya (Marina Square)
Evan Mua
Evan Mua

Pizzas may be their strong suit but I was smitten by a new find — their 𝗦𝗼𝘂𝗿𝗱𝗼𝘂𝗴𝗵 𝗞𝗮𝗿𝗮𝗮𝗴𝗲 ($20). These chunky, succulent boys are encased in airy sourdough batter that crackles thunderously and are as addictive as any narcotics when paired with the creamy kimchi mayo.

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You can get $9.90 Wagyu katsu sando from the basement of Paragon. Ok not quite — a Gyu Sando features 1 seamless cut of meat for that sensual tender bite but this variation uses a patty. For $9.90, you get a 𝗪𝗮𝗴𝘆𝘂 𝗣𝗮𝘁𝘁𝘆 𝗞𝗮𝘁𝘀𝘂 𝗦𝗮𝗻𝗱𝗼 with 1 side.

Is it worse off with the patty though? Personally, I think it's just different. You still get the robust bovine flavours but the texture just became a more rugged medley of beef punctuated with gentle scores of fat. While less smooth, this different texture actually melded into the rubble of katsu crust quite well.

Overall, it was a hearty ensemble of textures and flavours when finished with a piquant tonkatsu sauce and nice thin slices of bread. That said, the bread could be toasted better as I recall crispier bread on my last visit, and the patty's textures were a bit more inconsistent this time. But if you're looking for a solid beefy time, you can't go wrong with this interesting Gyu-Sando-Burger hybrid for an affordable price of $9.90.

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Una Una is well know for having the cheapest 𝗨𝗻𝗮𝗴𝗶 𝗛𝗶𝘀𝘁𝘂𝗺𝗮𝗯𝘂𝘀𝗵𝗶 in SG, with their half portion coming in at just $9.80, regular at $14.80, and double at $19.80. So does the price affect the quality?

Obviously, it can't match up to the likes of Man Man but it's also almost half the price. In the face of affordability, I can't complain — this is a solid option. Those scarlet chunks of eel were grilled to a nice tenderness with a touch of char, while sporting a glistening glaze that bestowed richness and depth without being turning cloying.

Alas, I did find the rice somewhat mushy, however that's not a huge complaint. Especially since my favourite mode of eating involves dousing it all in dashi broth, sprinkled with some spring onions and wasabi. This way results in a crisp profile while softening some of the glaze so you can get a more natural taste of the eel.

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For something more exciting, I also found their 𝗧𝗿𝘂𝗳𝗳𝗹𝗲 𝗥𝗮𝗺𝗲𝗻 ($24.90) tastefully executed with restrain, even if truffle is generally a worn-out trend. You get that earthy perfume but at a moderated dosage just to enliven the broth — not overwhelming but with enough headiness to accentuate that potent base.

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When @kanadaya.sg first landed in SG, their standing as No. 1 Ramen in London drew slews of people to queue for their iconic 𝗧𝗼𝗻𝗸𝗼𝘁𝘀𝘂 𝗥𝗮𝗺𝗲𝗻 ($17.90). You can't go wrong with their robust broth — comfortingly creamy and brimming with porky umami, it's definitely one of the better ones around.

An enjoyable ensemble of toppings and tender aburi chashu were just icing on the cake. As someone who thought they weren't worth the hype when they first arrived, I've actually been pleasantly surprised on all subsequent visits — a pretty solid tonkotsu option nowadays.

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Evan Mua

Level 7 Burppler · 416 Reviews

Picky eater with detailed critiques. Follow my IG @indulgentism, or my website for in-depth reviews.

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