A contemporary restaurant with a fresh take on Japanese dining has opened at food haven Tanjong Pagar.
Iko Restaurant and Bar has brought its version of Japanese cuisine to Neil Road with six categories of food including chargrilled dishes and savory bites and an exclusive selection of liquor and Japanese-inspired cocktails.
Iko is an abbreviation for “let’s go” in Japanese and means “offshore wave” when read backward. These are incorporated in the interior of the 55-seat space that has a vibrant neon logo sign with a nine-meter mural of swirling ocean waves and cranes, which are popular elements of Japanese art. The space is also enclosed by concrete walls with plush booth seats and a marble bar.
Singaporean chef Jeremmy Chiam helms the kitchen, serving modern Japanese dishes that incorporate subtle hues of colors purple, pink, and blue. His menu has six categories: Raw, Cold, Small, Robata, Rice and Noodles, and Sweet.
Some of his notable creations include Angus Short Ribs (S$38), tenderized in kurozu black vinegar and cooked for up to 14 hours before being served with port wine jus and garlic confit; and Mushroom Donabe (S$30), a vegan dish with Japanese rice cooked in shiitake mushroom broth and served with shimeji and king oyster mushroom as well as black truffle paste.
Its raw dish menu includes Uni (S$28) served with purple cauliflower pudding, layered with dashi jelly and topped with Japanese sea urchin, and Somen (S$29), which is made with pink ume-infused Japanese noodles, caramelized prawns, dried Japanese scallops, anchovies and Botan shrimps. There is also the cold dish Burnt Aubergine (S$12), which contains charred eggplant soaked in sesame yogurt sauce, and served with wild rice, toasted white sesame, and Japanese chili oil.
The bar offers exotic selections of sake, wines and cocktails like vegan sake Nanbubijin Junmai Daiginjo Omachi (S$118) and Ki No Bi Tea (S$23), a gin made with Tencha and Gyokuro teas.
Iko Restaurant and Bar
65 Neil Road
11:30am-2:30pm, 5:30pm-10:30pm; Monday to Saturday
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This article, Iko brings all-out modern Japanese dining to Neil Road, originally appeared on Coconuts, Asia's leading alternative media company.