What do you think of when I mention Hokkaido food? Sashimi? Crabs? Confectionery like Shiroi Koibito? Yeah, it’s all that. But as much as I love sushi and sweets and Hokkaido has plenty of those.. and really good ones… My favourite food in Hokkaido is actually… *drum roll*… BUTA DON!
Recently I saw on Life’s Tiny Miracles’ Instagram that one of the buta don shops from Obihiro (Hokkaido) opened a branch in Singapore! Obihiro, by the way, is the hometown of Buta Don.
11 Jan | Worked late today and both places we wanted to dine at were fully booked or closed. So we walked into this nondescript little eatery tucked at a corner, ordered its signature pork rice bowl and struck jackpot. The Hokkaido rice was fluffy and firm, the pork slices grilled to perfection, yet so soft that they melt in your mouth. David ordered udon bowl and it was so smooth we felt we were in Japan again! Needless to say, we fell in love with this eatery instantly. Sometimes when things don't go as planned, it can be a blessing in disguise waiting to happen! 😉 Come support this little eatery from Hokkaido, only one store in SG at Liang Court #02-32 (Opp Marutama Ramen). P.S my rice bowl set shown here with miso soup only costs $13.80! #instagram_sg; #InstaSG; #sgig; ; #sgfamilies; #sginstagram; #cny; #instafood; #sgfood; #foodporn; #foodstagram; #foodies; #sgeatwithus; #foodgasm; #goodeats; #hungrygowhere; #foodstamps
Butahage is actually NOT my favourite buta don shop in Obihiro. We visited Butahage back in December 2014 because my favourite buta don shop, Panchou, was closed.
It wan’t the best but it was good enough. Much better than most buta don shops in Japan. Butahage has branches outside of Obihiro, and we visited their branch at Lalaport Shin Misato near Tokyo last December because we never miss a chance to enjoy a bowl of authentic Obihiro buta don. Now that they have opened a branch in Singapore, I just had to visit it to see if it really tasted like the one we had in Obihiro.
When we arrived, we were told that they used two different types of pork. In their regular butadon, they used pork from USA. Whereas for their premier butadon, those used pork from Japan. The premier butadon cost more and was limited to only 30 bowls a day.
We decided to order one premier bowl and one regular bowl to see if there really was any difference. The premier bowl was served first.
My first reaction was, “Where are my peas?” Buta don from Obihiro is usually served with some peas on top. Instead, I had spring onion on mine. Next, they served the regular bowl – which came with peas. What’s up with that? I wondered why they didn’t use the peas on the premier bowl too. But oh well. Maybe it’s just my personal desire for a bowl of buta don as close to the ones in Obihiro as possible that made me so particular about the peas.
But on close scrutiny of the above photographs, can you already tell the difference between Japanese pork and American pork? No? It’s okay, I can use words. The Japanese pork has more fats. Which imo is essential to a bowl of good buta don.
I will never forget my very first bite of buta don at Panchou back in 2010. It’s been 5 years and I still remember it vividly. Because of the layer of fats that each slice of meat had, the meat was so juicy when we bit into it. Sorry but buta don is not meant for the health conscious. The fats and juice that comes with it is essential to making buta don so good and unforgettable.
In comparison, the normal bowl was less fatty and hence I found the meat less juicy in comparison. Nevertheless, if you have never tasted the original buta don from Obihiro that uses Japanese pork, I’m sure you would still love their regular bowls. Because of the SAUCE.
Every buta don shop in Obihiro has their own secret sauce recipe. The sauce used at Butahage in Singapore was imported from Hokkaido in order to achieve its original taste. So regardless of whether you order the regular bowl or premier bowl, the same yummy sauce is used.
In short, if it is authentic Obihiro buta don you are after, try their premier bowl. It is the closest you will get to Obihiro buta don without having to catch a plane to Hokkaido. But if you find it too pricey, the regular bowls are still pretty decent since they use the same sauce.
Another interesting thing to point out is that Butahage in Singapore has stuff like udon and cheese imomochi on their menu. Buta Don shops in Obihiro usually only have buta don on their menu.
I guess they are trying to bring in more tastes from Hokkaido to us – which I have no complaints about. Especially since cheese imomochi is one of my favourite snacks in Hokkaido! I am so happy to see it in Singapore. Shall try it next time!
Information on Butahage Singapore:
Address: Liang Court, #02-32/33,177 River Valley Road, Singapore 179030
Getting there: 8 min walk from Clarke Quay station (NE5)
Opening Hours: 11:30am to 10:00pm (Last order 9:15pm) (3:00pm to 6:00pm may close without any notification)
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Oh yeah… This is what Hokkaido pork looks like. @lifestinymiracles Thanks to you. 😝 #bumblebeemumeats #butadon #butahage #butahagesg #liangcourt #豚丼#ぶたはげ #singapore #singaporetrip #singaporetravel #sgfood #eatoutsg #hungrygowhere #burpple #instafoodsg #singaporerestaurant #sgrestaurant #sgfoodies #sgfoodie #whati8today #foodporn #foodstagram #sgparentblogger #sgparentbloggers #sgmombloggers #travelblog #travelblogger #sonya6000 #sonyalpha6000 #sonyimages
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