The Place From the guys behind Uma Uma Ramen in Tanglin, Uma Uma Restaurant & Bar at the new Millenia Walk Japanese Food Street is of a brand new izakaya concept. The cosy space has a long bar counter where you can watch the bartender at play, as well as a soon to be opened alfresco dining area. We learnt that the original Uma Uma concept in Japan is a Izakaya-Ramenya, so if anything, this new Uma Uma brings us closer to its authenticity.
The Food Grilled Yakitori and Kushikatsu, these are the highlights of any Izakaya and seriously it should also be what you are here for. To go with the grilled items, there is a wide selection of cocktails and drinks by Horse’s Mouth.We started off with the Yakitori sticks, all priced between $2 to $3++ each (minimum order of 2 sticks). Some of the better ones we tried were the Butabara (pork belly) skewer and Chicken Skin. The Butabara was grilled to a nice tender texture, while the Chicken Skin was so crisp that I thought it was fried. I particularly love the sauce drizzled on the sticks, which is the chef’s secret recipe.
We were not particularly fond of the Nankotsu (chicken soft bone) skewer, which is purportedly popular among Japanese. The soft bone had a chewy texture and a rather bland taste which I can’t fully appreciate, but if you are adventurous and curious about it, do give it a shot as this is probably one of the few places to try this.
Another light bite you have to try is the Brussels Sprouts ($10), which was fried and dripped with the special sauce. I still remember how crunchy and addictive this was, clearly one of my favourite bar bite on the menu. I will probably never look at Brussels Sprouts the same way again.
Other than Yakitori sticks, we also love the Kushikatsu (deep-fried breaded skewers), price between $2 to $5++ each. The Pork Loin ($4), Prawn ($2) and Scallop ($5) were coated with a light batter which somehow managed to accentuate the freshness of the ingredients. Go for the Scallop and Pork Loin if you have to choose selectively.
If you still have space for ramen, our recommendation is to go for Singapore exclusive Mazesoba ($14), which reminded me of our local hawker version of dry mee. Topped with onsen egg and char siew (addtion $2 for charsiew), this dry version was packed with the kind of flavours that we need for a hearty meal. Or if you prefer soup, you can’t go that wrong with the Uma Uma Ramen ($14.00).
Drinks wise, I love the Ume no Yado Yuzu ($16) fruit Sake which added a refreshing touch to go along with the grilled food.Go for the ice cream here to cap your meal. Strongly recommending their Goma ice cream!
Rants The small space means limited seats and sometimes, awkwardness when you find yourself eavesdropping into fellow diners’ conversation. Yet, this is a true Japanese experience, ain’t it?
Will I Return Again? Yes, I am looking forward to my next visit here with a beer in hand and sticks of grilled wonders.
Taste bud: 3.5/5
Hole in the pocket: 3.5/5
Overall Experience: 3/5
Uma Uma Restaurant & Bar
9 Raffles Boulevard, #02-06
Tel: +65 68370827
Monday to Saturday: 11.30am to 2.30pm; 5.30pm to 12 midnight
Sunday: 11.30am to 2.30pm; 5.30pm to 10pm
Ranted by The Ranter & Rantee