Singapore: Viva Japan Cafe [Closed]

29 Feb

Viva Japan Cafe is a pop up cafe by Cool Japan (a multi-agency initiative that is also endorsed by the Japanese government) that temporarily occupies the 56th floor of ION Sky till end March 2012. It’s a chaya (tea house) that also serves light meals, showcases Japanese products, art and houses events that feature visiting Japanese chefs. Its mission is “to showcase the great and wonderful beauty of Japan and our food culture that still very much exist” after the 3.11 Earthquake.

For food, there is only an option of Viva Set $28.80 for 3 courses (including 2 teas). There are also Japanese teas, cocktails and beer on the menu (including mini cans of Asahi beer). As part of the set, we are first served hojicha (roasted green tea) in a beautiful teapot with a cup of our choice. We are told by our polite and effervescent waitress that it’s good for our digestion, and is also low in caffeine. It was very good quality tea and I love the slightly burnt flavour of hojicha.

Do I spy brown rice?

Next a bowl of zesty wild mesclun salad with ponzu seaweed dressing whetted our appetites.

For mains, there were three choices. This was the seafood udon with black sauce which tasted quite Chinese, and was extremely delicious!

A fusion pasta dish, the tagliatelle egg pasta with prawns in miso bonito sauce also delivered. My only gripe for both mains was that I wish they came in bigger portions.

Dessert was fruit parfait, with a variety of fresh fruits served in yoghurt.

The meal was concluded with hot green tea, which I slurped to every last drop. The teas in Viva Cafe are really a class above the teas served in Japanese restaurants.

Pretty cups for sale

There are art installations and displays all over the event space, and I particularly liked this brush painting that was done during the open ceremony of the cafe.

I thought it was quite an interesting experience especially if you’re a lover of all things Japanese. It’s also a quiet option in ION if you’d like to get away from the madding crowd and crazy queues. The meal itself is not much so it won’t make a ravenous person full. But it’s a great place to chill, have a light meal and indulge in good Japanese tea – plus the view at the 56th story sure doesn’t hurt too. Come soon before it closes and show your support for Japan! x

Price: $-$$ ($28.80++ for the 3 course set, drinks are ~$12++)
Location: 2 Orchard Turn ION Orchard, Level 56F, Singapore 238801 (You need to access a separate lift near the shop PRINTS in ION)
Opening hours:  10am to 10pm (last order 9pm) till 31 March 2012 only

Tel: +65 6636 5156

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