Located at the basement of Vivocity mall, Tsuta Japanese Soba Noodles is a modern quaint noodle bar with quite limited seating. With the label of the Michelin star award winner, the noodle bar has quite the expectations to meet and you can tell from the long queue of customers waiting to try their noodles during meal times.
There is close to 7 tables and a couple of counters seats so the wait is not extremely long since most customers leave once they finish their food. With the stress of customers queuing, you probably want to take your conversation elsewhere as well.
While queuing, we were handed the menu and the order chit where you can customise your noodles on how salty you want the soup.
We got our table within 10 mins of waiting and I liked that the colour of their spoons is coordinated with their menu.
For starters, we order some sides for sharing. This is the Aburi Niku which is barbequed pork cubes served with house onion sauce. Even though the plate was tiny, there was a good number of pork cubes. The cut for the pork cubes was well-marbled and there was a strong and flavourful charred flavour once you bite into the pork. The onion sauce was light and helped to balance out the oiliness of the meat. I really loved the nice charred flavour of the pork.
The next item we ordered to share is the Ro-Su char siu which is supposed to be thinly sliced Canadian pork shoulder drenched in a buttery sauce. I was kind of looking forward to this since the description is so mouth-watering. When it was served, I was disappointed. The dish was cold so the meat was cold and the buttery sauce was partially frozen. I’m not sure if this is the best way to enjoy buttery sauce as you can’t taste the full flavours and the cold meat makes it kinda gamey. I wouldn’t really recommend this dish.
The karaage chicken came in this little metal plate and surprisingly with lime for flavouring. Surprising this taste more like the local shrimp paste chicken than the usual karaage chicken you get from Japanese restaurants.
I had the ramen with tonkatsu broth and you can order the basic which just comes with a slice of char siu or the Ajitama version which comes with an onsen egg. Surprising the broth was very light but still flavourful with that milky Tonkatsu taste. The char siu is thinly sliced with a very light taste
The soba noodles were cooked with a slight al dente bite and are thicker than the usual ramen noodles.
I do love how perfectly the onsen egg was cooked and you could taste the deep shoyu flavour within the yolk and egg whites.
The award-winning ramen was the shoyu based noodles so we ordered one which was also on the lighter side compared to another shoyu ramen. You can taste the vague salty and sweet flavours of the shoyu but it is not too salty that makes you thirsty after drinking the soup. Personally, I think it is quite tasty although my friend thinks it is not extraordinary that warrants a Michelin star.
Something worth mentioning is their hot teas served in the pot. I ordered the momo peach tea while my friend ordered the yuzu tea. The momo peach tea was fabulous as the fragrance of the peach was very strong the moment you pour the tea into the cup. There was also this nice tinge of momo peach taste complemented with the tea leaves that gives it a very refreshing flavour. In comparison, the yuzu tea was very bland. They also sell these teabags at the cashier counter but they are quite pricey.
Overall, personally, I think the noodles at Tsuta is quite nice while the side dishes were not that fantastic except the pork cubes. I do not mind visiting again for a quick meal as long as there is no long queue outside.
Address: B2-29A Vivocity, 1 Harbourfront Walk, Singapore 098585
Operating hours: 11 am to 9 pm