Akashi is easily one of the oldest Japanese restaurants in Singapore. The flagship outlet opened its doors in 1995, and used to be in the Tanglin Shopping Centre. It is now located midway between the basement and the footpath of the Orchard Parade Hotel. The restaurant has also opened two other outlets in VivoCity and Paragon.
Akashi at Orchard Parade Hotel showcases one of the longest sushi bars in town. It offers a wide range of fresh sushi and sashimi, which is best sampled via Akashi’s a la carte menu. The emphasis in this restaurant is the freshness of its imported ingredients.
We visited on a Sunday afternoon and found the place packed – it seems that the restaurant is popular with office workers during weekday lunch hours, and with regulars and area residents on weekends. As no tables were available, we sat at the sushi bar counter. The interior of the restaurant was cosy and compact, with a spartan-zen décor that had strong wooden accents. Diners come mainly for the food and you will be greeted by the friendly service staff with their bright and cheerful smiles.
We ordered two set lunches and some sushi and side dishes to try. The California Temaki (S$6) or Avocado handroll did not disappoint. The rice was firm and the ingredients were fresh. The avocado in the handroll tasted just right – it was not too ripe and when mixed with the other ingredients, was of exquisite texture.
The Unakyu Temaki (S$10) or grilled eel with cucumber handroll was superb. The grilled eel was well-marinated and exuded an appetising aroma when we bit into it.
The side dish that we ordered was Shiromi Goma (S$5), which is pan fried white fish with home-made sesame sauce. The sesame sauce was perfect for this dish. It gave the white fish extra fragrance, and helped it to do a tango for the tastebuds.
For the set lunch, we ordered the Akashi Bento that cost S$20 for lunch (it is S$25 for dinner). This is served in a special bento box and comes with rice, pan fried mackerel, vegetable tempura, tempura prawns, sashimi, pickles, soup and fruits. It is a complete meal in itself and provides much value-for-money.
For desserts, we had two types of ice cream ‒ the Ma-Cha (S$6 for a single scoop), which is green tea ice cream, and the Goma (S$6 for a single scoop), which is sesame ice cream. The Ma-Cha was smooth and perfumed with green tea aroma. For the latter, we could taste the grounded sesame; the ice cream itself was not too sweet. The restaurant added red beans to the sides of both ice creams, which made for both a visual and tasty treat.
Akashi is a popular restaurant with both locals and tourists. Although it has been around for many years, it stands the test of time as the quality of the food is consistently good. The service here is quick, efficient and above all friendly. When craving for Japanese food, Akashi is definitely one place to consider.
Address: Orchard Parade Hotel (Lobby level)
1 Tanglin Road
Opening Hours (Daily):
Lunch: 12.00 pm to 3.00 pm
Dinner: 6.30 pm to 10.30 pm (Last order: 10.15 pm)