Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Shabu Sai @ Orchard Central

The bunny was itching to fill my tummy with a good buffet but the queue at Kiseki was soooooooo long when the hubby and I dropped by (as it was a spontaneous decision, we didn't manage to make any reservation) after shopping in the vicinity of Orchard Central on a Saturday evening. The snaking queue was (almost) enough to rival McDonald's queue when there's a Hello Kitty offer. Hence, we decided to made a slight detour and visited Shabu Sai for our dinner, which was just next door to Kiseki.

Shabu Sai
The scene at Shabu Sai was the total opposite of the long queues at their neighbour's. The rustic interior decorations carried the unique Japanese charm and the feel at the restaurant was almost Zen-like, with the relatively quiet setting and its bamboo and wooden furnishings.

Interior of Shabu Sai
There's a rather wide range of soups that are available at Shabu Sai - Seaweed soup, Sukiyaki soup, Spicy soup, Curry Dashi soup, Tomato soup, Tonkotsu Shoyru soup and a special monthly soup which was the Seafood White broth when we visited. Diners are supposed to pick 2 soups out of the list. For our dinner, the hubby and bunny took the Tonkotsu, which is one of the most popular choice, and the Seafood White broth.

I have to say that the soups are really good - they're rich and flavorful. In the Seafood White broth, we could find juicy white clams as well.

Soup and items from the buffet table in the background
From the buffet table, diners are able to get ingredients such as a variety of vegetables, mushrooms, tofu, fishcakes/ fishballs, crabsticks, squid rings, mussels, prawns.. etc. There's also appetizers such as chawanmushi (steamed egg) and sushi available.

The bunny was particularly carnivorous that day, so my focus was mainly on the meats. The meats are free flow as well, but are served upon request.

Top to bottom: Beef, chicken and pork
The meats were sliced very thinly to aid in the ease of cooking. They're fresh and have a good fat to muscle ratio so it's not too tough to chew yet still won't leave you with a mouthful of fat.

Cooking the pork in tonkotsu soup
We had topped-up $1.99++ each for free flow drinks and self-service soft-serve ice-cream, so the ice-cream was the sweet ending to our meal. There's only vanilla ice-cream, but there were a variety of condiments, such as caramel/ strawberry/ chocolate syrups, cereal, peanuts, sprinkles etc.

The bunny's ice-cream
Overall, the bunny felt that the Shabu Sai buffet is pretty much worth it's price. The soups were tasty and the meats were fresh.

Prices are as follows:
Weekday Lunch : Adult $16.99++
Weekend Lunch : Adult $19.99++
Weekday Dinner : Adult $24.99++
Weekend Dinner : Adult $29.99++
Child : $9.99++

Shabu Sai @ Orchard Central
Orchard Central, #08-09 
181 Orchard Road

Tel : 6884 6760

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