Umami Dining Lounge

Average: 4 (1 vote)

Part of the mammoth party club known as Social House, this plush, stylish restaurant serves up Japanese food with a modern, luxurious twist. If you're looking to live it up, go for the prix-fixe omakase menu and let head chef Mizushima show you what he has up his sleeve. If our experience with the spicy dynamite oyster, sashimi platter and wagyu beef "burger" (among other things) was anything to go by, you won't be disappointed.

Besides being known as our fifth taste (after sweet, salty, etc.), umami also means "yummy" in Japanese. And yummy the food definitely was when we dropped by this swanky establishment (part of the mammoth Social House) for dinner. We were greeted by a loud "irasshaimase" by a Japanese chef busily slicing salmon for a row of Japanese men at the counter heartily wolfing down slices of fish with their sake. The opulent dining with plush booths was unlike any Japanese restaurant we’ve ever been to. We started with a serving of Japanese omelet roll with truffle oil that was so oishii—the sweet egg rolls complemented the earthy, savory and robust flavors of the truffle oil perfectly. We then each ordered a prix fixe six-course omakase just to get a taste of what head chef Mizushima had to offer. The appetizer of assorted braised vegetables Japanese style, spicy dynamite oyster (boomz!) and sushi roll did not disappoint—the highlight being the baked oyster that was finished with a spicy mayo sauce. The sashimi platter that came next was ocean-fresh and we gobbled that up quickly. Next up was the chawanmushi. Done à la minute, it was the best Japanese steamed egg dish we’ve ever had (really). Even one of our dining companions who had lived in Nagoya remarked that it was as good as what she had had there. The main course was a choice of teppanyaki-styled chicken or Wagyu beef “burger” finished with the chef’s secret sauce. Both came sizzling to our table and although they looked ordinary, the tastes were definitely out of this world. Suddenly, a fragrant aroma hit our nostrils and it turned out to be the Japanese beef that was on promotion. We promptly ordered a serving, then returned to our next two courses—the deep-fried tofu and cheese, and udon with kakiage—that were sadly nothing to shout about. Finally, the 100 grams of top grade Japanese Wagyu beef arrived intact—with rich marbling that literally melted in our mouths … simply awesome. We rounded off our perfect evening with a Japanese pudding. The service here was top-notch, attentive and personable—the head waiter overheard that one of our dining companions had lived in Nagoya, and brought chef Mizushima to our table for a chat. With such sumptuous food and great service, you can bet we’ll be back to try more of its à la carte dishes.

Venue Details
Address: Umami Dining Lounge, #01-28 Liang Court, 177 River Valley Rd., Singapore, 179028 Singapore
Phone: 6333-1100
Area: Clarke Quay
Cuisine: Japanese
Price Range: $$
Open since: April, 2009
Opening hours: daily noon-3pm, 6-11pm
Reservation recommended, Parking available: at Liang Court
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