Experience luxurious Okinawa Motobu Beef at En Group
The best Italian chefs make their mark through their secret ingredient they place in pasta sauce. At En Japanese Dining Bar and Z’en Japanese Cuisine, their secret ingredient isn’t something you’d expect – Motobu Beef from Okinawa.
Motobu beef isn’t widely known around the world – yet. Beef lovers often seek out the famous Kobe beef or Matsusaka beef. Yet to many discerning foodies, they have a rival that is beginning to make big waves in the culinary world.
Motobu beef were born and gattened up in Yanbaru of Okinawa, where the cattle is raised on a very special diet. Located in Japan’s southernmost prefecture, Okinawa’s subtropical climate offers great condition for reproduction of cattle. The cattle are given a unique, fermented feed with added lactic acid bacterium and brewer’s grains that are drained from Orion Beer.
With this feed, it contains a lot of dietary fibres and has a higher ratio of unsaturated fatty acid compared to general Kuroge Wagyu. As a result, Motobu farms produces beef that is tender yet sweet in flavour.
The excellence of Motobu beef has been proven by 7 consecutive wins in Okinawa Stock Raising Expo since 2006. In November 2013, the prized cattle won an “Outstanding Award” which is the grand prize equivalence at Japan National Livestock Agricultural Competition.
Importing the meat directly from the ranch in Okinawa, En Group is the only restaurant group in Singapore to offer it. They have launched two types of all-you-can-eat Wagyu course with A5 grade Motobu Beef.
En Japanese Dining Bar
Address: 383 Bukit Timah Road #01-01
Alocassia Apartments, Singapore 259727
Tel: +65 6235 0080
Operating Hours: Mon to Sun: 6pm ~ 1130pm. Sat, Sun & Public Holidays Lunch: 12:00pm ~ 3:00pm
En Japanese Dining Bar builds upon the concept of modern Japanese dining bars known affectionately to the locals as an ‘Izakaya’ and are extremely popular among the cosmopolitan crowd in Japan. With a wide spread culture of ‘a beer after work’, it calls for a place where people can relax and chill out with fellow colleagues & friends over some beers and good food. En Japanese Dining Bar also specialises in Okinawan cuisine to appease those with a voracious appetite.
From now till end of January 2015, they are offering a Wagyu yakiniku semi-buffet with 10 accompanying Okinawa dishes at $58++ (usual price $88++). You can get FREE FLOW of A5 Motobu beef within 90 mins. I repeat, FREE FLOW OF MOTOBU BEEF! It is very good deal!
Just look at my appetizers! A plate of salmon sashimi, sashimi salad with Okinawa dressing and prawns with Okinawa seaweed (mozoku). Mozuku is a type of seaweed characterized by its unique viscous texture and the presence of fucoidan, which is gentle to the stomach. Okinawan mozuku is widely popular in mainland Japan. In addition to being low in calories, its simple flavor makes mozuku a suitable ingredient for any type of cuisine. In this case, it has been wrapped with the prawns to give it an interesting bite.
No meat eater can resist the marbled beef slices, sweet ponzu sauce and grilling of this meat. Honestly, I don’t remember how many pieces of Motobu beef entered my stomach. Every piece is so thick, succulent and tender that they really do melt in your mouth. We enjoyed the yakiniku at the al-fresco area where there is a light breeze and we pair with Orion Beer. #ThisIsLife
Besides the Motobu beef, there are many Okinawan dishes such as Hirayachi (pancake), California Roll, Goya Chanpura (bittergourd with tofu), Okinawa seaweed fried rice, spicy kimchi soup with clams and matcha ice cream for dessert.
Hirayachi is fried with little oil in a pan and consists of eggs, flour, salt, black pepper and green onions. The snack is popular in Okinawa due to the fact it’s easy to make and the ingredients are typically ones people always have in their home, which is helpful when typhoons hit.
My advice for you is, to pace yourself. With influences from China and Southeast Asia, we can see that Okinawa dishes has Chinese influences. Having these dishes feels like I am having dinner in a Okinawa family. Especially the seaweed fried rice, it is so simple yet so flavourful, and pairs really well with Goya Champuru, a blend of vitamin and mineral-rich bitter melon (goya), egg, tofu and Spam.
We love the promotion so much that we have already made reservation to come back for Christmas. There’s no better time to indulge in a little bovine goodness right! Grab the Motobu beef before it’s gone! Note that Yakiniku is only available at the Al fresco dining area. If you prefer indoor dining, you can opt for the Shabu Shabu option with the same course at additional $10.
En Japanese Dining Bar also has another outlet in Mohd Sultan:
207 River Valley Rd
#01-57 UE Square
T: +65 6735 2212
Sun to Thurs~ 6pm to 12am
Fri, Sat & Eve of PH~6pm to 3am
P/S: En Japanese Dining Bar is presenting a Tuna Cutting show at the Mohd Sultan outlet on 19 Dec (Fri). For interested readers, please visit http://www.endiningbars.com for more information.
Z’en Japanese Cuisine
Address: 205 River Valley Road
UE Square #01-75, Singapore 238274
Tel: +65 6732 3110
Opening Hours: Mon to Fri 12pm to 2.30pm, 6pm to 12am. Sat, Sun & PH 6pm to 12am
A playful twist to the word En, Z’en (a sister outlet of En Japanese Dining Bar), as its name suggest, is a mean to reaching a calm and tranquil sense of being. Reflecting this philosophy in our food culture, the culinary team at Z’en combines traditional with a touch of modern to create some of the restaurant’s hugely popular signature dishes while keeping it neat, clean and uncomplicated.
At Z’en Japanese Cuisine, they offer a 10 course set with free flow of Motobu beef served in Shabu Shabu at $68++ (Usual Price $98++). We started with cold tofu with queen crab topping, tuna tartar, salmon sashimi, queen crab croquette and mentaiko udon. As you can see, the dishes here brings a modern touch while keeping its Japanese roots.
Mentaiko Udon sounds like a fusion dish that’s trying too hard. But it is indeed a delicious fusion with the udon cooked al-dente and tossed in creamy mentaiko sauce. It is slightly heavy but definitely brimming with umami. As you can see, visual presentation is not spared any effort as each dish is artfully designed to bring out its essence and utmost taste.
Special shabu shabu pots sit on portable burners on each table. The shabu shabu base is mild and sweet when we tried it on its own, but the ingredients gave it a different dimension.
We’re presented with 2 types of dipping sauces: A homemade citrus-y Ponzu Sauce and a more aromatic, nutty Gomadare (Sesame Seed) Sauce. With the Shabu Shabu Courses, you’re served a plateful of assorted fresh vegetables. I enjoy letting as many flavors combine as long as possible, so I usually add in a good portion of each of the ingredients right at the start (when the broth begins to simmer).
But at the end of the day, it is about the glorious A5 Motobu Beef. It has been so tenderly cared for as the thin slice of beef should only be blanched in the hot water for about 5 seconds. Excellent meat quality which is buttery with light beefiness.
No no, after enjoying the shabu shabu, there are more dishes to come! We had the spicy seafood crunch roll, lightly grilled wagyu sushi, lightly grilled yellow tail sushi, grilled white fish with mushroom sauce and matcha ice cream. If the thought of gathering up some friends and family, enjoying a variety of Vegetables, Seafood and top-quality Beef – Shabu Shabu style – in a warm, cozy atmosphere sounds good, then look no further than Z’en Japanese Cuisine.