18 June, 2007

Black Pig Hot Pot

In Chinese, "hot pot" is often called 火鍋; where huǒ means "fire" and guō refers to "pot", whereas in Japan, it is known as Shabu-shabu.

Unlike our Chinese Steamboat where the emphasis is the broth – which is made up of lots of ingredients to make the soup tasty – in Shabu-shabu the emphasis is on relishing the original flavour of the meat, so only clear water is used to cook the meat.

Having brought my parents to Marutama Ramen for dinner, we chanced upon Tom Ton, located just two units away, which specialise in Kurobuta Shabu-shabu.

Kurobuta, which is Japanese Black Hog, is 100% pure all-natural Berkshire pork.

Regarded as the highest quality pork in the world, the meat is said to be a combination of a sweet, rich flavour, and its delicate texture, unbelievable level of juiciness, and its excellent marbling, will really have you begging for more.

The hot pot is accompanied with Soba, and a "special dipping sauce" (as quoted from the waitress) which somehow taste like Miso.

Instead of the familiar sesame dip that my family is used to when we eat at home, we were instructed that everything from the vegetables to the meat, as well as the soba, goes into the dip - no wonder it is special, it is a multi purpose dip! Since they specialised in pork, our sides are both pork dishes as well.

The Miso-topped Grilled Pork was aromatic and tender, and each time you sink your teeth to it, juices from the meat overflow from within - a pity the serving was pretty pathetic. The other side we tried was the Tonkatsu Kurobuta.

Although their version was good, I felt their sister outlet at Tampopo served a meaner and fattier version of it. Overall, the food was good and the ambience - overlooking the Singapore River was fantastic, however the odds of us returning are very slim.

We felt that it was not valued for money, as the serving was pathetic for the price we paid (we had to stuff ourselves with bowls or rice and soba), and service was also found wanting as we waited for ten minutes for our table even though reservation was made. Also tough luck that the view did not bowled us over since our family stayed at Clark Quay for a good 20 years before we relocated!


Food: 4/5
Service: 2.5/5
Ambience: 4/5
Price: 2/5
Total: 12.5/20
The Central #03-88/89
6 Eu Tong Sen Street
Singapore 059817

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