#1: Kappo Shunsui
Put aside thoughts of the sombre, reverent atmosphere you’ve seen depicted in shows like Jiro Dreams of Sushi. A meal at Kappo Shunsui is anything but.
True, it takes a fair bit of effort to access: After snaring a reservation (there are only 19 seats!), you need to make your way past the izakayas and seedy karaoke lounges that litter Cuppage Plaza, then seek out the sign-less rose-gold door that’s adorned with a single flower on its left and a biometric scanner on the right. But that mysteriousness is part of the excitement and once you’ve entered the restaurant, you’ll find the service welcoming and energetic.
Photos? Sure. Curious about your food? The team is always happy to explain. Quality ingredients are but of course. However, chef Tomo Watanabe’s mastery is in the way he coaxes flavour from the produce in unexpected ways. Like reducing his special dashi broth into a champagne-hued jelly, such that it provides savoury interlude to the pristine sweetness of his fresh seafood starter.
Or sauteeing harvested-in-spring-only Shin Tamanegi onions in dashi then blending it all into a silky smooth puree that absolutely steals the limelight from the A4 omi roast beef (in case you’re interested, here’s our wagyu guide) on the plate ─ never has an onion puree seemed so juicy, so gently sweet, with just a teasing hint of sharpness.You’ll want to complete the experience with a sake pairing. It’s extremely affordable ─ from $55 for six sakes ─ and chef T is a certified sake sommelier. But if that cerebral logic doesn’t convince, maybe his erudite collection of sake ware will. Each and every piece is an art piece unto itself, gingerly crafted from ceramics and glass.
Kappo Shunsui, #04-02 Cuppage Plaza, 5 Koek Road, tel: 6732-0192