Tuesday, October 04, 2011


Guess where? :)
Cocoichibanya! The latest addition of Japanese curry offerings to the Singapore dining scene. 

Japanese curry (カレー karē?) is one of the most popular dishes in Japan. Honestly. A survey done in 2005 by S&B Food Inc found that Japanese people eat it an average of 125 times a year!

My love affair with Japanese curry came and left with the $1.99 shop. With curry cubes selling at $1.99, it would always be one of my purchases amongst the random snacks and notebooks I used to buy every time I walk into one of the outlets. The allure of curry cubes was not so much about taste but more about the fragrance of spices to curb cravings when they hit along with the instant cream doria sauce packets. When the chain closed down suddenly, I no longer had the habit of picking up curry cubes. Not even now with Daiso. I suppose that's because Japanese curry is not regarded as a curry in my household. No one really fancies Jap curry. I mean let's be objective about this curry idea at home. If its contender is Grandma's chicken curry then Japanese curry is child's play. :)

My idea of a standard Japanese curry was the exact version Tomoko cooked for us on a -42 degrees winter night in Montreal- onions, carrots, potatoes and chicken cubes cooked in a large pot, served steaming hot with rice. I was terribly impressed that she was able to make curry till I saw the instant curry cubes. It was then that I was terribly... pleased! That meant I could make curry on my own cold winter night. :p

So HELLO cocoichibanya on perfect curry weather days! (Rainy, wet and cold days)
Faithfully waiting in line for an hour for our food. Today was the last day of a 30% discount they were offering on all dishes. I knew I had to have anything with cheese! Technically, since cheese was an add-on, I could've had it with any other curry rice order but that thought didn't occur to me until I overheard a diner making an order for one of their rice sets with cheese. Hunger took over from the time I stood in line till I sat down. Since the only order on the menu that had cheese in the dish was katsu cheese curry... so that, my order shall be.

Less rice of 150g and a $1 discount. Very nicely done! And a Level 2 for spice. I didn't know what to make of a spice level because if you've seen those instant curry cubes, mild and spicy all taste the same to me. But I was pleasantly surprised by a level of actual chilli hot type spiciness for my level 2. I added on some of the spice condiment on the table as well and manually increased the level of spiciness. Suffice to say, I enjoyed my curry. A lot. Ate it all up! And the pickles too. Crunchy sweet. Was a lovely accompaniment to the curry. I saw the waitstaff topping up the pickle containers non-stop for the time that we were there. Seems like everyone else thinks it goes well with curry too! The katsu however, was more batter than actual meat. Perhaps I should've just taken the Omu Kinoko (Creamed mushroom omu rice) instead.

Muneerah trying out Japanese curry for the first time. And I'm relieved it did not disappoint. She went for the standard set. No adjustments no frills. The curry taste was the familiar taste of those instant curry cubes that made no difference with mild/ spicy. :) The seafood curry taste had a strong fishy aftertaste that wouldn't go down well if you were not a seafood fan.

Although it took us an hour to secure seats, our orders were served in ten minutes or so. No hungry woman's wrath to deal with in that short amount of time. :) Hmm, anything else with cheese for next time then. A next time yes, there shall be!

To more curry weather days and curry eating nights out.

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