|Ground floor counter space of Chikin|
|Second floor dining room of Chikin|
Yakitori may not exactly be new in Singapore but yakitori (bincho grilled skewered chicken parts) plus kushiyaki (bincho grilled skewered meats and vegetables) served with a dash of Szechuan “mala” (麻辣) pizaazz alongside a shot of Japanese-inspired cocktail is a sure recipe to turn heads.
At the recently-opened Chikin, this new-to-Singapore concept is proving to be a hit with the drinking crowd, particularly during happy hours, when all cocktails go at S$15, as evinced by the flux of people choking the entrance to this Japanese pop art-decorated triple storey shophouse at Bukit Pasoh Road. While the neon lit ground floor counter seats that abut an open kitchen/bar cater mostly to the drinking crowd, the second floor wood-decked dining room serves bigger and decidedly quieter dining groups, while the third level space is reserved for private dining.
|Yakitori finished with a dose of “mala”|
Chikin is clearly about the chicken – 13 different parts ranging from fatty bishop’s nose (S$3.50) to springy-with-a-bite gizzard (S$3.50), smoky mid-joint (S$4), crisp and savoury chicken skin (S$3) to crunchy cartilage (S$4), these are skewered, grilled on the binchotan and finished with a dose of “mala” spice. Guests with a bigger appetite for heat may request for the chef to up the “mala” spice.
|Kushiyaki vegetable options – shishito peppers and San Marzano tomatoes|
There are other kushiyaki options but the selection is decidedly small, think beef tongue (S$6), iberico pork collar with leek (S$6) and vegetables like shishito peppers (S$3.50) and San Marzano tomatoes (S$4), all pierced on a stick, grilled on bincho-tan and finished with the Szechuan peppercorn spices.
|Sea snail in Szechuan spices served chilled|
|Unagi garlic fried rice topped with tobiko|
To complete the experience, the menu offers a host of Japanese-inspired small plates. Don’t miss the chilled sea snails enrobed in Szechuan spice (S$16), yuzu wasabi konnyaku or devil’s tongue (S$10) and some carbs to finish, perhaps plentiful ikura garlic rice (S$28) or the unagi garlic fried rice that comes topped with tobiko (S$28).
Wash it down with Japanese-inspired cocktails created by chief bartender Sam Wong, all priced at S$19 nett. Shiso My Mojo (sake, shiso leaf, yuzu, calamansi) is light and citrusy while Kuru Strawberry (sake, gin, strawberries, orange bitters, berries) works if you like your swizzle a little stiff.
All prices quoted on Chikin’s menu, food inclusive, are nett prices.
6 Bukit Pasoh Road, Singapore 089820 |+65 6910 2742 | chikinbar.com