Authentic Japanese restaurants in Singapore are rarer than you think. Many restaurants loosely slap on the title ‘authentic’, and hang a few lanterns and posters on their walls to mimic a traditional Japanese restaurant. But that’s not enough. Personally, a good indicator is when the restaurant imports their ingredients, especially the seafood, from Japan. However, the biggest indicator is when restaurant’s chefs used to cook for The Japanese Association.

If the Japanese approves, there’s no reason for me to complain about the food at Jo Japanese Restaurant.

Jo Japanese Restaurant has just officially opened at Seletar Country Club — a blessing to the members. While the location is a little inaccessible to the general public, especially for those who don’t drive, trust us when we say that the food is worth the travel.

A cosy setting that accommodates around 40 people. Outdoor seats are also available

For starters, they import their ingredients from Japan twice a week. My favourite was the akami, which literally glistened under the light. It was tender and fatty, with a mild buttery flavour. The squid was also impressive, with a slightly chewy texture that you can bite right through.

One of the freshest sashimi I’ve had in Singapore

Jo Japanese Restaurant also serves one of the best tempuras in Singapore, with a light and airy batter that encapsulates thick and juicy tiger prawns.

We weren’t able to get the full experience, as the food was prepared buffet-style for their grand opening ceremony.

Omakase, the traditional way

Omakase, translating to ‘leave it all to me’ in Japanese, is a style of dining where the diner entrust their meal to the chefs. There’s no need for a menu here as the chefs serve their seasonal items and daily specials. Depending on the restaurant, chefs may also tailor the meal according to how diners react to each dish.

The more modern style of omakase that we’re used to, especially the ones in Singapore, fixes the number of dishes you’re getting. Naturally, restaurants would set a fixed price for different number of courses, so diners would know how much they are paying, and exactly how many dishes you’re getting.

However, the Chef’s Omakase ($200-$400) in Jo Japanese Restaurant embodies the true essence of omakase by getting rid of all structures. Diners won’t know what to expect, not even the number of dishes they’re getting.

Jo Japanese Restaurant’s chefs used to work for The Japanese Association

Meanwhile, those who are looking for a more affordable meal, can opt for their omakase lunch course which starts from $58, and their dinner courses which start from $138.

Diners can also order a la carte, or lunch and dinner sets that start from $16.

Location: 101 Seletar Club Rd, #01-01, Singapore 798273
Tel: +65 6486 0827
Opening hours: 11:30am-2:30pm; 6-10:30pm

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