not really a very good japanese buffet – but if you aren’t too fussy and want a buffet, this one gives you an option at a pretty decent price.
buffets are a difficult format to serve, in any case – food gets dried out from constant cooking by the ambient heat of the foodwarmer, the spread tends to be unimpressive unless you pay quite a lot, and quality gets overlooked in favor of quantity.
there is a wide range of both cooked dishes and sashimi, and I give them points for interesting items like meat skewers and cook-when-ordered claypots of seafood soup, as well as grilled pieces of (good-)oily salmon collar.
service is harried (it is a busy, popular restaurant), but otherwise friendly and quite welcoming.
dessert is a mishmash of ice cream, cake and mochi, none of which really caught my eye – except that at least the chocolate sauce wasn’t too thin, and provided an inoffensive sweet something to finish.
so really, while I wish I could give this place a better recommendation than I am – it’s earnest, and tries to be good value, and they have nice staff – the food falls rather short of expectations.
it’s very close to what my father would call “children’s food”, and is best for large groups with less-discerning palates.
#08-01/02/03 Orchard Central
181 Orchard Road
tel +65 6736 1216
$$: 30ish per person at lunchtime