Originally from Japan, Yonehachi (est. 1976) is best known for its Okowa おこわ, or flavoured glutinous rice. Only premium grain varieties - particularly the ones cultivated in agriculturally endowed prefectures such as Iwate and Akita are sought, these dappled with brunoised vegetables, seafood and whatnot, then smooched by steam to a glorious sticky fluff.

Local F&B group Japan Foods Holding Ltd presently operates all 3 existing Yonehachi SG outlets through franchise agreements, the third at Great World City having opened earlier in March. Customers who desire to pimp their a la carte Okowa orders can pursue multitudinous set meal options made available (typically includes miso soup, Houji tea plus choice of side - gyoza, soba noodles, fried chicken among others).

Yonehachi @ Takashimaya Food Hall, Ngee Ann City

What knocked our socks off:

The Unagi Okowa duly impressed - fatty soy glazed eel slivers avowing an intermittent sweetness that tacitly juxtaposed against vicid, well-smoked rice meant お代わりしに行く(going for seconds) was inevitable.

Unagi Okowa ($7.80/200gm)

What didn't work out:

The Salmon Okowa = outright bland, probably even blander than Barbra Streisand's granny panties ....... need we say more? Give the soba add-on a wide berth too; forcing them doomsday plain noodles down your system might just engender unwanted suicidal thoughts. Life is way more colorful, we promise.

Salmon Okowa + Soba Set ($12.90)

Other items sampled but turned out to be non-events:

Chestnut Okowa ($7.80/200gm) And Red Bean Okowa ($6.80/200gm)

Note: Prices subject to change without prior notice. Kindly clarify with outlet before visiting or ordering.

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Score: 5.3/10


Editor's Note: Yonehachi has shuttered its operations at Raffles City and Great World City.


Ngee Ann City Raffles City Great World City
391 Orchard Road, 252 North Bridge Road, 1 Kim Seng Promenade,
#B204-1/2 #B1-75 #B1-K117
Singapore 238872 Singapore 179103 Singapore 237994