Originated from Toyko, Tempura TenTen at Raffles City Basement is a Tempura specialist that offers both tempura and ramen within its small 36 seater restaurant.
Premium King Prawn Tendon 3/5
What's unique here is the Premium King Prawn Tendon ($19.80) and fresh Unajyu eel from Kagashima. Fried in Tokyo style, the King Prawns are coated with a batter that is lighter than that of the regular tempura. The King Prawn felt pretty heavy as I held it up with my fingers. It was meaty and sweet, and it got even better when the batter soaked up the sticky spicy tempura sauce. Surprisingly, the spicy version of the tempura sauce intrigued me more than the regular sauce. I like its tanginess and the edge of spiciness at the end, akin to how a tabasco sauce would do to your taste buds.
Ordering the Unatendon ($19.80) allows you to try both the assorted tempuras and freshly grilled unagi from Kagoshima. The unajyu was tender, with a nice char on the surface. It is not too bad a deal if you want to satisfy your craving for unagi. One special tempura topping highlighted to me is the Chicken Ball with Mozarella Cheese. I don't quite fancy it though, as I feel it lacks the oomph even with the lava cheese. Another variation that you can do to your tendon, other than opting for the spicy sauce, is to change your rice to truffle rice for $1 more. The truffle infused Hokkaido rice looks just as clean as the regular one but with that truffle 'fumes'. If everything else is too fancy for you, then stick to the Special Tendon ($13.80) that comes with all the basic tempura toppings.
Ebi Prawn Ramen 2.8/5
Sharing the same limelight with the tendon is the Specially Roasted Hokkaido Ramen. Created by Chef Mamoru, two-time champion of Ramen Champion, the miso ramen here are specially roasted. But what might catch your eyes is perhaps the Ebi Prawn Ramen ($16.80). The broth is simmered with chicken bone, whole chicken, ginger, garlic, Japanese leek and mushroom for around 6 hours. Personally, I don't like this version of ramen at all. I love the generosity of the toppings - the spring onions, bamboo shoots and sweetcorn but the broth is too dense and the flavours fail to hit any notes. The noodles is also thicker type, which I supposed the thickness is meant for the richer broth. It also doesn't help when the prawn was rather overcooked in my bowl.
Offering both tempura and ramen, Tempura TenTen is ideal if both you and your friends want a variety of dishes. However, maybe at times simplicity is still the best, making it easier for customers to identify the brand and concept.
Photos and words by Si An. A girl who is allured by travelling, loves the feel of freedom, smell of the rain and the aroma of fine coffee and food. Note: This is an invited tasting.
252 North Bridge Road
Tel: +65 63367457
Nearest MRT: City Hall (EW Line, NS Line)
Daily: 11am - 10pm
1) Alight at City Hall MRT station. Take Exit A. Walk to destination. Journey time about 3 minutes. [Map]