Daily: 11:30 - 14:00
Daily: 17:30 - 22:00
This comfortable restaurant serves a wide selection of Japanese cuisine, including premium sashimi airflown from Japan.
For photos, please visit Six&Seven.
Usually when going out for dinners, I would opt for Japanese food. Like many, I am under (and still am) the pretense that Japanese food is healthy, if you avoid the tempura; and the chicken or pork katsu; and the Japanese curry. Correction – just order sashimi.
I could have opted for Sushi Tei, but where is the joy as a food writer to dine in highly commercialized Japanese restaurants. And so I made a reservation at Megumi Restaurant @ Upper East Coast – one of my favourite neighbourhood Japanese restaurants in the east. It is rather small and packed; so do make reservations to avoid disappointments. Service is outright bad with each waiter lost in his sea of orders and request, so you have been forewarned. That being said, I assure you the food makes up for it.
Looking through the menu, I was a tad disappointed that they did not have an assorted sushi set. The only sushi set that was available was the grilled ones. It must have been a sign telling me to avoid carbohydrates past 7, so I settled with an assortment of sashimi.
We ordered the swordfish ($14), salmon ($10), and tuna ($12). While priced marginally higher than your average Japanese restaurant, the quality bypasses by leaps and bounds. The slices of fish were thick, sweet, and immaculately juicy. Quality was unparalleled, and the price comes at a steal after you have had your first bite. I died, and went straight to sashimi heaven.
Being adventurous, I also ordered their daily special which was some Wagyu beef ($28). While wagyu beef is traditionally Japanese, I was puzzled when the dish came in a hot plate (think hot plate tofu), and served with slices of baby carrots and potatoes. I could have sworn it was not the 4th of July, so I do not know why the chef was paying tribute to the largely Japanese beef by serving it like an American steak. As if that was not confusing enough, the beef came out a tad dry, which is really odd for an especially fat cut of the cow.
Next up was the Garlic mushrooms and scallops ($15). The garlic mushrooms were flavourful, and the scallops were fresh and juicy. While cooked together, the dish’s flavour did not overpower the natural goodness of the scallop.
By this time I was starting to have my carbohydrate withdrawal symptoms. Not wanting to embarrass my guest in a full out catharsis, I relented and ordered a plate of Cruncy seafood roll ($12) to share. It was a soft shell crab maki, but you can be assured that the restaurant was generous with its portion of soft shell crab albeit covered in rice. If you are disgusted with the cold, soggy and ripped off soft shell crab maki you get at Sushi Tei, I would high five you through the screen. Megumi’s is definitely a huge step up from this. Make that two.
Lastly, the true helm of every Japanese restaurant is the Chawamushi ($4). A simple steamed egg dish which oddly, restaurants can still mess up. If you cannot cook fried rice, do not open a Chinese restaurant. The chawamushi was done well, and I liked the grated orange zest on the top that gave a unique piquant welcoming taste to the dish.
Megumi is a good option for Japanese food lovers looking for somewhere new. The sashimi is a definite must try. To err on the side of caution, order from the menu as being adventurous is not always rewarding. Reservations are recommended, and bear in mind the to be a little forgiving towards the service.
This place has pretty good food. What is their downfall is ironically their success. They are busy but over the months, I can see a dwindling business. This is because coming to the restaurant is like begging to be served. It is as though they are paying you to eat and they are doing you a favour. The entire restaurant is steeped in arrogance. They are successful. For now. I hope they act me decent human beings so the restaurant survives. It is to be fair one of the better Japanese restaurants in the east.
Demand remains very high in Siglap for good Japanese food, and with Megumi being a small restaurant they are often busy.
Quality of food is ok, nothing exceptional, and it is an ambitious menu to complete - something visible when some dishes are not up to par.
Ambiance is less Japanese as one would expect and the tablet menu ordering is not optimal, as noticed in other reviews.
Apart from the food quality variation, it is also quite over priced, especially when considering the east coast location. You will easily rack up to $30 per person, as mentioned earlier.
Perhaps the most annoying detail is that they charge $1 for water, and that they don't serve normal tap water at all.
Hopefully they will rectify a few details and improve, but unless you are desperate for Japanese food in Siglap, I would recommend you stay away currently.