"I get by with a little help from my friends."
- John Lennon
Tomo means "friend" in Japanese, and this izakaya was introduced to us by a friend of a friend. He did some design work for them (their logo, for one thing), and was impressed with their food. At his invitation, Keropokman, HungryCow and I checked out their newly opened Esplanade branch (main one is at Clarke Quay). The menu is extensive, but we were won over by the meat dishes.
Behold, buta soki - stewed pork rib with soft bones. I love soft bones! But I think they removed these prior to serving, because we didn't find any. Still, the meat is amazingly tender! Apparently soki has Okinawan roots, and involves boiling the meat (prior to stewing) to remove excess fats. No wonder it tasted delicious without being greasy.
Yasai tempura - a nice medley of vegetables. The batter is light and crunchy, not too oily. Not too bad.
This is the Edomae sushi set. I think we were too preoccupied with photography, and forgot to eat this early, as it got a bit dry and lost its cold edge in the warm weather.
Buta kakuni - stewed pork belly. Somewhat similar to the buta soki, but with slightly different sauce. Also very, very tender.
Ebi ten maki or shrimp tempura roll. We also had the California roll which looks very similar.
The manager recommended this dish - mentai cabbage. It's not as salty as I thought it might be, despite the generous portion of mentaiko (spicy or marinated pollock/cod roe).
I've saved you the best for the last - dice cut cube steak. Chunky diced beef and mushrooms in a savoury sauce. We could not stop eating this when it came.
Check out Keropokman's post here. We will certainly visit the Clarke Quay branch someday - I have to see their award-winning decor. Their S$15 lunch sets are very popular there too, it seems.
Thank you, Casey, and Tomo Izakaya, for the lunch at Esplanade!
8 Raffles Avenue #01-09
Esplanade Art Centre
Tomo Izakaya @ Clarke Quay
3A River Valley Road
#01-04 Clarke Quay
Sun - Thur: 11.30am – 1 am (Last order at midnight)
Fri - Sat: 11.30am – 3 am (Last order at 2 am)