Last week was my friend, Bee’s birthday. We had a date to celebrate and she chose to have Japanese since she’ll be taking me for Western food for my birthday in two weeks. My favourite restaurant Ikoi at Miramar Hotel was full, so was Irodori at River View Hotel. Even The Dunearn at NUSS was full. I goggled for some help and Kaiseki Yoshiyuki at Forum looks good but way above my budget. A few other Japanese ala-carte buffets popped up and I chose Shin Yuu, slightly higher price than the other Japanese Buffets in town but conveniently(to me) located at Bukit Timah, and it was available.
The restaurant is located in Greenwood Ave, in a row housing other restaurants. We were lucky to locate a parking space at the back of the shop house.
We picked a seat near the entrance. The ala carte buffer menu didn’t have much to offer. The menus are divided into appetizers (salad, chawanmuchis, baby octopus, jelly fish), sashimi (separate and assorted), handrolls, sushis, tempura, seafood and meat, and fillers like rice and noodles.
As recommended by other reviewers, we ordered all the star specials, which included the chawamuchi with roe, as well as sashimi, salads, fried bean sprouts, scallops, beef, belly pork.
There was some house specials not listed in the menus which were brought to our table. One special was a plate of belly tuna roll, belly salmon roll and smoked duck. (Above plate of sashimi).
The sashimi was fresh but some pieces were unevenly cut and too small for my liking. Subsequent individual cuts were more generous though.
Another house special (which means no repeat orders) was the cheese-baked tiger prawns. Very delicious. For a table of four, they serve lobster.
Among the forgettable house-specials which were served that night was a small soup bowl of beef cube curry with potatoes which I found nothing special. Another was Alaskan crab, the pieces, size of my little finger should be scraped if they are so stingy about it.
There is a lack of vegetables and soup dishes. I ordered all the vegetables in the menu, which included a salad, a bowl of plain broccoli, fried bean sprout and yasai tempura(vegetable). The only soup available is miso soup.
The belly pork that was served looked overly deep fried, shriveled and burnt. My beef steak was much better. There were some other ‘star’ dishes we ordered but were not impressive.
For dessert, we chose yuzu ice cream – a small dollop in a Chinese soup bowl. Too little of a good thing.
At $52.90 ++ per person excluding green tea (@$1++), I was rather disappointed. The serving size, presentation (mostly in plain Chinese soup bowls) and quality of cooked food were found lacking. Service could also be improved. My order of tenderloin did not arrive, and some dishes had to be reminded a few times. The only consolation was our friendly waiter.
I wonder how other reviewers could give them 4 stars?