Friday, December 16, 2011

Fat Cow: The Wagyu Atelier

Fat Cow serves some really fat cows - premium brand wagyu from Japan and Australia, like the Grade A5 ribeye from Kagoshima (sliced for shabu shabu above) or Australian Beef Grade MS A8+ Ribeye from the Blackmore Ranch (grilled as steak below).

You can see the marbling of the A8+ grade ribeye
You can see the marbling of the A8+ grade beef in this medium rare steak.

It's love before first bite.

This Japanese-inspired meat atelier is the latest place where you can indulge in some of the best steak, teppanyaki, shabu shabu and sukiyaki available. Fat Cow is a concept by The Big Idea Group, the result of the merger between Kinki and the Marmalade Group. They take great pride in using ingredients flown in from Japan for everything from cocktails to dessert.

Fat Cow's bar area
The vibe is contemporary Japanese with grid-like themes. There is a bar area upfront where you can chill before you head into the dining area.

The U-shaped dining counter at Fat Cow
The main dining area is a U-shaped counter that seats about 16. This is where you can watch the chefs work and engage in chit chat with them. There are private dining rooms as well, separated by shoji screens.

Well, it's not just the beef here that's great. I found myself liking the zensai or starters a lot. Here are three of them.

Heart of Palm Salad (Crisp Japanese onions, shaved heart of palm and Mizuna)
Heart of Palm Salad (Crisp Japanese onions, shaved heart of palm and Mizuna, $18). The crisp, moist white slices are heart of palm which provide great texture to the delicious salad.

Kegani Tofu - House-made silken crab tofu with truffle dressing
Kegani Tofu (House-made silken crab tofu with truffle dressing, $25). This is probably the most luxurious tofu you can have - infused with king crab and topped with shaved black truffles. It's like chawan mushi for royalty.

Wagyu Ox Tendon & Foie Gras and Daikon
Wagyu Ox Tendon and Foie Gras (Slow cooked wagyu ox tendon with pan-seared foie gras and braised daikon, $29). The sauce, oh the rich, thick, syrupy sauce! I would so love to be able to buy bottles of this sauce. It makes everything so delicious, from the ox tendon that's been braised for hours, to the aromatic cubes of foie gras topping the daikon.

But on to the main event.

It's a deliberately simple menu. There are four grades of beef, and you can specify how much you want. You can choose to have your meats done four styles - shabu shabu, sukiyaki, charcoal-grilled or teppanyaki. The servers are of course happy to advise on any combinations.

Shabu shabu with premium wagyu beef
The Shabu Shabu uses a light stock, so that nothing overpowers the natural flavours of the ingredients.

Vegetables for the shabu shabu
Toss in these gorgeous fresh vegetables to sweeten it further.

We sampled four types of wagyu from Japan and Australia
And then indulge in the heavenly beef slices - so beautiful! We sampled all four grades of wagyu. The top two are the premium A5 and A3 grades of Kagoshima beef. Bottom two are Australian beef grade MS A8+ from Blackmore and Stockyard ranches.

Behold the premium Japanese wagyu from Kagoshima
Quick close-up of the Japanese wagyu and their excellent marbling.

We started eating the less fatty grades first, before proceeding upwards.

Australian beef grade MS A8+ ribeye from Stockyard Ranch
First up, the Australian Beef Grade MS A8+ Ribeye (From Stockyard Ranch, $52/100g). Tender and sweet.

Australian beef grade MS A8+ Blackmore ribeye
The Australian Beef Grade MS A8+ Ribeye (From Blackmore Ranch, $85/100g), I found was the most "beefy" in terms of flavour.

Japanese beef grade A3 Ribeye from Kagoshima
Steamy hot slice of Japanese Beef Grade A3 Ribeye (From Kagoshima Prefecture, $80/100g) with thick ribbons of visible fat. But it's healthier fat (monounsaturated) compared to normal beef. The Japanese wagyu tastes almost ethereal. The beefy flavour is surprisingly very delicate.

The Japanese Beef Grade A5 Ribeye (From Kagoshima Prefecture, $95/100g) in the first photo above was the most tender, of course. Goes with the ponzu sauce or sesame sauce equally well.

Porridge made from the shabu shabu broth
The premium fatty slices swishing around in the shabu shabu pot will have created a nice broth, which can be made into a delicious porridge afterwards.

Would you like some steak while you wait for the porridge to cook?

This slab of steak is probably a hefty 350g
This is an enormous slab of about 350g, which is more than enough shared by four people. OK, what am I saying, there's never "enough" when it comes to wagyu...

Australian Blackmore MS A8+ Ribeye Steak
The Charcoal Grill (Steak) comes with two sides that change to reflect what is fresh and in season. The meat is grilled using binchotan (Japanese white charcoal). This is Australian Beef Grade MS A8+ Ribeye (From Blackmore Ranch, $85/100g). Can you smell how good it is? So tasty, so tender.

House-made warabi mochi with green tea and roast soybean flour
Desserts are also kept deliberately simple. You have fresh fruit, ice cream or the following two.

This is the Warabi Mochi (House-made warabi mochi seasoned with green tea and roasted soy bean flour, $18). The mochi is made with arrowroot flour, and is an incredibly laborious thing to create. The chef would not have placed this on the menu if he didn't have an assistant who loved making this despite the tedium.

Kabocha Soy Soup
- Kabocha Soy Soup (Warm sweet soup of kabocha and fresh soy, $18). Japanese pumpkin in light sweet soy milk. Comforting stuff.

But what drinks to accompany the sublime beef? Thankfully, there is a resident mixologist at Fat Cow, and he can make you various cocktails, including bespoke creations.

No, that's not a marijuana martini
The Dealer's Choice is where you take a gamble on the mixologist's creation. He will concoct something for you, based on your preferences. Here we have a Kyoho Smash with Apricot Foam (Ron Zacapa 23 years, Fat Cow Kyoho liqueur, fresh yuzu juice, sugar syrup, fresh air flown Japanese purple Nagano grapes, apricot foam, $26). And no, those are not marijuana leaves!

Hot Buttered Ume
I had to try the Hot Buttered Ume (Ron Zaccapa 23 years, Fat Cow Ume syrup, rose butter, $25).

Hot Buttered Ume
It's like a rich, savoury tea with complex flavours (tangy, buttery, sweet and floral). And alcohol! I wonder if the Tibetans would say about this (given that they love yak butter tea)!

Nichibotsu (Gran centenario anejo, Fat Cow Biwa* Marmalade, Fat Cow cardamom syrup, fresh orange juice, egg white, yuzu)
- Nichibotsu (Gran centenario anejo, Fat Cow Biwa Marmalade, Fat Cow cardamom syrup, fresh orange juice, egg white, yuzu, $25). Biwa is a Japanese kumquat. The nichibotsu tastes really light, so it's great for people who don't like strong drinks.

We really enjoyed dinner. I would love to go back for some of the starters - there's some yuzu grilled unagi as well, and also try the teppanyaki.

So Fat Cow is definitely an experience if you love good beef and fine food. However, you'll need a fat wallet or expense account to dine there comfortably. But there's no denying it's a great venue to celebrate important occasions.

1 Orchard Boulevard,
#01-01 Camden Medical Center,
Singapore 248649

Tel: +65 6735 0308

Open Mon–Sat: 6pm – 11pm
(right now it's only for dinner, but lunch is on the cards)

Many thanks to FoodNews and Fat Cow for the treat.


  1. is this an invite seassion again? why dont you state it or label your tastings?

  2. Prease lah. 又来一个 anonymous coward? Other people's blog means is they can write what they like. You small that time never get to play police issit. Go and hong other things can?

  3. Everything looks pretty amazing! I like the place very much!

  4. OMG.. your best post ever... Makes me want to be there now!

  5. Yes, great, the one time I forget to add my usual thank you acknowledgement and someone jumps on me. I was rushing this bumper post bleary-eyed at 7am, before going out. But thanks for helping me to spot that.

    Sandra and Triathlon Chef: thanks! I hope you guys get to try it someday!

  6. this looks amazing!!! my heart skipped a beat just admiring the marbling on that slab. gorgeous!

  7. are they open for lunch now? besides beef, do they serve seafood as well?

  8. I haven't heard about lunch yet, but will certainly update when I do.

    Yes, they serve seafood - Alaskan King Crab, seasonal fish, uni, scallop, unagi, abalone, toro, tai (snapper).

  9. This is a very wonderful place. I hope I could experience eating there and the food would live up to my expectations. shoji screens

  10. The place is wonderful. I think it is good that you get an insurance from a home owners insurance company to secure the place when any problem comes.

  11. I just had lunch at this place today and was totally blown away by the wagyu beef and the Australian beef. Thanks to a generous friend and colleagues from the industry. I wonder how it'd affect one's cholesterol though, especially with the pure fatty goodness of the creamy fat sliding down one's gullet. *burp*!


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