Beat the heat at these six restaurants in Singapore, which serve refreshingly cold soba. The Japanese noodle dish is traditionally made from buckwheat flour, which is mixed with water to form a dough, then cut, cooked in boiling water, and cold shocked in an ice bath.
Typically consumed during the country’s muggy summer, soba is also touted for its health benefits, and is naturally gluten-free.
Soba is best eaten fresh – the noodles clump together over time – which is why these places cook your dish upon order. The old school way is to serve it is over ice with a a dipping sauce made of dashi, soy, mirin, and a little sugar. Then there are modern iterations by Reiwa, which offers a chilli oil broth.
Read on for more, and for something same, same but different, check out our guide to mazesoba here.
(Hero and featured image credit: Fidel Fernando/Unsplash)
6 best restaurants to eat cold soba in Singapore
This story was first published on Lifestyle Asia Singapore
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Hana is one of those izakayas that has everything: sushi, sashimi, tempura, sukiyaki, even maki tacos. But you’re here for the Instagrammable Flying Cha Soba (S$18++). It’s a gravity-defying dish of levitating chopsticks holding up springy green noodles, which cascade into a nutty sesame sauce with a creamy quail egg.
Daily, 12pm to 2.30pm, 6pm to 9pm
If health is wealth, then Iki is for you. They make their noodles from organic buckwheat, which is kneaded by hand, then stretched and cooked upon order. The Mori (S$10+) is the classic, or have it topped with a variety of vegetables and meat including eggplant, natto, egg, grated daikon, salmon, avocado, or unagi.
Mondays to Saturdays, 11am to 3pm, 5pm to 9pm
Ichiban Boshi has different menus for their various locations, and the one in Suntec specialises in soba. The pure version (S$9.90++) comes only with dipping sauce, or opt for sides like black pork and mushrooms, don bowls, or a set with unagi, salmon sashimi, assorted tempura, and chawanmushi. Green tea soba is also available.
Weekdays, 11.30am to 10pm
Weekends, 11am to 10pm
Reiwa Soba started as a coffee shop stall near Kelantan Road before branching out to multiple locations around the island. Their newest flagship branch in Chinatown still makes the noodles upon order, and they arrive chewy and sticky. The traditional Zaru Soba (S$10+) comes with a dashi soy dipping sauce, but their signature is a homemade spicy broth.
Mondays, 5.30pm to 10pm
Tuesdays, Thursdays to Sundays, 11.30am to 2.30pm, 5.30pm to 10pm
Want to see soba rolled out in front of you? It’s possible at Shimbashi, which has a window for gawkers to stare at the process. The restaurant uses Tasmanian buckwheat flour, which gives the noodles a snappy yet chewy finish. Seiro (S$12.80++) is their take on the classic, or make it heartier with a side of seafood and vegetable tempura.
Mondays to Fridays, and Sundays, 11.30am to 10pm
Saturdays, 10.30am to 10pm
Tokyo Soba is an offshoot of Yomoda Soba in the Japanese capital. The soba here is slightly different, made from a ratio of 80 percent Japanese buckwheat and 20 percent flour with purified soft water, which gives the noodles a smooth texture. There’s a choice of either dashi dipping sauce or the soy-sugar-mirin kaseshi, and seasonal items can range from Spanish mackerel to glazed yam.
Weekdays, 11.30am to 2.30pm, 5pm to 10pm
Weekends, 11.30am to 10pm
(Image credit: @curiousfoood / Instagram)