Nobu Singapore is without a doubt, the restaurant opening that everyone has been talking about. With a star-studded patronage of A-list celebrities, Nobu has made a name for itself in the culinary world as the pioneers of Japanese-Peruvian cuisine. With so much hype surrounding the name, we were curious to know if the restaurant is really worth the trip (and the massive hole in our pockets).
Nobu Singapore marks the chain’s first outlet in Asia, and boasts a stunning Japanese-inspired decor, with a spacious wood-themed interior and gorgeous Japanese-style hanging lamps illuminating the space with a soft and warm glow. Nobu at dinnertime is bustling, with every table in sight filled; yet despite being a full house, the place was not as noisy as you’d expect thanks to the high ceilings—so you don’t have to worry about being within earshot of other patrons in the restaurant.
One key feature of Nobu Singapore is the gorgeous zen garden located within the restaurant itself. Complete with stone pathways and even a miniature waterfall, this space is utterly tranquil and quiet—a serene getaway from the city noise (and perfect for aesthetic photo ops, of course).
Tuna Tacos, $9/pc; Salmon Tacos, $7/pc
Japanese Red Snapper Sushi, $16; Tuna Sushi, $12
Salmon & Avocado Maki, $18; Soft Shell Crab Maki, $32
While the service at Nobu was slightly slow (probably due to it being a full house), the servers were super attentive: constantly refilling our waters and switching out our plates for new ones. As for the food, Nobu’s menu is touted as a more modern take on Japanese fare, so if you’re a purist who likes your sushi raw and only raw, this might not be your scene (though Nobu does offer a good selection of raw sashimi).
Salmon Sashimi Salad with Matsuhisa Dressing, $44
Yellowtail Jalapeño, $39
Salmon New Style Sashimi, $32
On the other hand, if you’re not so great with raw fish, Nobu is perfect for you to dip your toes in the world of raw sashimi! The iconic Yellowtail Jalapeño ($39) was light; served in a tart, citrusy sauce (perhaps a tad too citrusy) that successfully masks the rawness of the Yellowtail, making it easy to eat even for those who don’t particularly enjoy sashimi. The jalapeño slice and coriander served with the yellowtail also lends a nice freshness to the dish. The Salmon New Style Sashimi ($32) is another dish that’s friendly for sashimi beginners, served lightly seared and in a pool of soy sauce—Nobu gives the classic salmon sashimi a modern twist that is sure to delight salmon lovers.
Black Cod Miso, $68
Rock Shrimp Tempura with Creamy Spicy Sauce, $54
While the raw dishes were well-executed, Nobu’s hot dishes were even more outstanding; and in our opinion, are what makes them more unique as compared to other traditional sushi restaurants. The Black Cod Miso ($68) is the definition of fork-tender: buttery and melt-in-your-mouth, packed with sweet and smoky umami flavour—definitely a must-order if you’re at Nobu. The unassuming Rock Shrimp Tempura with Creamy Spicy Sauce ($54) was also surprisingly delicious, being both plump and crispy at the same time—we could probably down the entire dish in minutes.
Beef Toban Yaki, $56
Anticucho Peruvian Style F1 Japanese Rib Eye Steak, $128
Nobu doesn’t forget the meat lovers, and even their beef dishes are spectacularly done. The Anticucho Peruvian Style F1 Japanese Rib Eye Steak ($128) is worth the price tag: served on a hot stone, expect perfectly seared slices of steak with tantalising soft pink centres—each bite is succulent, filled with juicy beefy flavour. The meat is already great on its own, or you can up the ante by dipping with the sauces provided. The Beef Toban Yaki ($56) is another beef dish that’s worth ordering. Brought to the table still sizzling in sauce, the sweetness of the sauce and tender mushrooms give the beef a great mouthfeel.
Melon Shiso Kakigori, $22
Nobu Cheesecake, $21
For dessert, make sure to order the Melon Shiso Kakigori ($22) to round off the meal. Made with melon shaved ice, fresh melon balls and mochi, this dessert is not overly sweet and makes a refreshing end to the meal. If you prefer desserts that are more familiar, the Bento Box ($24)—Nobu’s version of a chocolate lava cake and ice cream—and the Nobu Cheesecake ($21) are pretty foolproof options.
So is Nobu worth the hype? In short, yes—but perhaps more for those who are down for Japanese fare that’s more experimental and modern. Definitely bookmark Nobu for special occasions or times when you’re feeling bougie, as the vibe and ambience of the place is impeccable and absolutely stunning. When you visit Nobu, expect to splurge, as a comfortable meal for two is likely to set you back at least $300, especially if you’re planning on ordering drinks as well. However, with a month-long waitlist that’s only getting longer, those who are looking to snag a table at Nobu might be disappointed for now—but that might be due to change very soon as Nobu will soon be opening for lunch as well, so stay tuned!
Worth a visit: For special occasions or when you feel like splashing some cash.
Address: Four Seasons Hotel, 190 Orchard Blvd, Level 3, Singapore 248646
Opening Hours: 6pm-10.30pm daily