Shinzo Japanese Cuisine – A Hidden Gem by Chef Lawrence Chia
I love to discover hidden gems! First, it was Tamashii Robatayaki. Sweetheart Amanda then introduced me to another new Japanese restaurant along Carpenter Street called “Shinzo”. I was surprised to find out that this new Japanese restaurant is opened by Chef Lawrence Chia, who used to be from the renowned Japanese restaurant Hinoki!
With Chef Lawrence Chia at the helm of this culinary gem, not only are you guaranteed the freshest produce flown in from Hokkaido and Kyoto, but you can also hear a tale or two from his varied experience in the food and beverage industry. He was a graduate from the famed Nogawa School, and has always been the most earnest of chefs.
We went for lunch that time and ordered a Unagi Lunch Set ($38) and Wagyu Beef Lunch ($45). Appetizer was Century Egg Tofu which had cntury egg puree smothered on a cube of silky soft tofu, topped with tobiko roe, nice! And I ordered an extra truffle chawanmushi and love its smooth texture.
There’s a good reason for my not always liking unagi: When not done right, it is fishy. So I only eat it at good restaurants and Shinzo passes the test. The girlfriend had grilled fresh water eel with rice, served in a simple bento box. Not bad, it had an appealing shiny texture, which comes with moist and tender meat.
My stir fried wagyu beef & vegetables with rice was alright. Tender slices of beef was paired with Japanese rice and vegetables. I think I can do with more sauce. By the way, apologise for the low quality photos, I was using an iPhone.
Shinzo is not fashionable, but it serves good food. Its lunch set is not the most pocket friendly, but I left feeling satisfied. Get the counter seats if you can so that you can get a close look at the chefs at work. The soothing lighting makes you feel relaxed and comfortable. A full omakase is available for dinner along with a range of traditional sushi, I will definitely be back. Go quickly before it becomes crowded.
Address: 17 Carpenter Street, #01-01
Tel: 6438 2921
Opening hours: Mon-Sat 12pm-2.30pm; 6.30pm-10pm