Shinsora has much to be proud of. Not only did it survive the worst of Covid-19 when it opened, but also its two chefs, Chef Sky Tai and Chef Leon Yap, are also World Sushi Cup Champions. Quite a mean feat considering both were born and raised outside Japan.
Today, the 10-seater omaksase restaurant continues to operate out of its Odeon Towers-based premises, with no more than a SafeEntry code hinting at its presence within Standing Sushi Bar. One might even mistake it for a private dining room with front-row seats to the sushi-making action.
Singapore-style omakase prides itself on a chef’s rapport with his customers. It’s easy to see how Chef Sky built a following for himself, exchanging jokes with his regulars and even showing off his Japanese knife collection. If you’re lucky, he’ll even sport a Korean-style heart sign for your Instagram Stories!
The daily Omakase ($250++) comprises eight gorgeously-crafted dishes, starting with a Seasonal Appetiser Box of specially-curated items to whet your appetite. Chef Sky explained that every season brings about a different set of appetisers, and indeed, the refreshing flavours of the firefly squid and jellyfish were reminiscent of a vibrant spring.
We were jokingly informed by Chef Sky that “everything on the Sashimi course is edible”. The nodoguro is incredibly refreshing and clean tasting, building up to the slightly sweet and buttery hotate and finally ending with the rich and fatty toro.
The Botan Ebi makes a separate entrance complete with Murasaki daikon that changes colour when drizzled with Sudachi lime. Eaten together, the sweet and citrus notes of the ebi and daikon come together to yield an intense hit of flavour.
The Black Chawanmushi is one of my favourites. Affectionally known as Yin and Yang Chawanmushi, this signature item layers silky-smooth chawanmushi with yuzu dashi ankake and seaweed sauce made with nori from the Ariake Sea. The result is a hot dish that is both comforting and complex, with flavours of the sea that enhance the taste of the unassuming chawanmushi.
Chef Sky’s culinary prowess really comes to the fore during the Sushi course. The ten-piece flight includes the Flame-Seared Shima-Aji Edomae Sushi which clinched Chef Sky’s World Sushi Cup Champion title. Topped with house-cured daikon, yuzu miso paste, caviar, and gold leaf, it is a decadent creation made up of several elements that come together perfectly.
Other noteworthy items include the Isaki, Nodoguro, and Binchotan Otoro – all of which feature intense umami notes.
Hot on the heels of the Bafun Uni Sushi is the Uni Handroll, which is a real treat to watch Chef Sky making. With a slight crunch from the toasted nori, the uni is unapologetically briny and buttery. Heavenly is what it is, if you are an uni lover.
The Chef’s Soup is wholesome and rich, with collagen included to make your face “bouncy, like poink poink“. (Chef Sky’s words.)
Dessert is a trio of distinctly Japanese creations, from the homemade cheesecake and chocolate to the slice of sweet musk melon.
There is something harmonious about the way Chef Sky and Chef Leon have translated omakase into an authentically Singaporean experience, combining Japanese culinary art with jovial bantering between chef and diner. It’s a decent introduction to omakase if you’ve always wanted to try it but are intimidated by the practices associated with it.
Address: 331 North Bridge Road, Odeon Towers 01-04, Singapore 188720
Nearest MRT: City Hall EW12/NS25
Tuesday to Sunday: 7pm – 10.30pm
Closed on Monday
Contact: +65 8737 4366