This “Japanese-inspired meat atelier” is five years old this year — no mean feat considering Singapore’s fickle dining scene. A classic space with pale wood chairs and tables, shoji doors and screens, the centerpiece here is a 16-seat U-shaped counter (where you can watch and even chat with the chefs). The menu features luxe starters such as Zucchini Blossom Stuffed with Crab ($30). But the real star of the show is the wagyu beef: A4 ribeye (from $120) and A5 ribeye (from $148), which you can have cooked in the style of your choosing — sukiyaki, shabu-shabu or sumibiyaki (charcoal grill). Drink-wise, there’s a respectable wine (from $16/glass) and cocktail (from $16) — think Ume Sours — list too.
From the Shizuoka prefecture in Japan, Fukashi Adachi has always loved food. (His home region produces quality local produce, green tea and Ginjo grade sake.) But his experience in cooking and dining out was pretty limited until he moved to California post-college. In the States, he found access to food from all over the world. He soon began training as a chef and learnt about both food culture and preparation. Having worked in both San Francisco (Blowfish Sushi to Die For, Sebo) and Bangkok (Zuma), Chef Adachi’s experience is diverse. He was drawn to Singapore’s tropical climate just three years ago, joined Fat Cow and hasn’t looked back. Chef Adachi usually cooks for himself and doesn’t dine out often. But when he does head out, he likes Muchachos, which serves up the food of his second home San Francisco. Having lived in the Mission District, he remembers the city’s taquerias well. They provided “tasty, spicy comfort food after a long day at work”.
At Fat Cow, Chef Adachi’s definite favorite is the wagyu beef, especially cuts from the Saga prefecture. On the menu at the restaurant are grade A3 tenderloin ($89 for 110g; $178 for 220g) and grade A3 sirloin ($120 for 150g; $225 for 300g) from Saga. Diners can have the beef done in three different ways: grilled sumibiyaki-style, shabu shabu and sukiyaki.
He also recommends his seasonal specials, like these tempura blossoms, which are inspired by Southeast Asian produce, as well as his frequent trips back to Japan. The tempura blossoms are stuffed with seafood (steamed crab, scallop and mitsuba leaves) and deep fried until golden brown. They make a great appetizer and go great with drinks.
While he respects tradition, Chef Adachi and his chef friends also like to incorporate non-Asian flavors into their creations. An example is the Onsen Tamago No Gyu "Marrow" Furai. The rich dish features a soft cooked egg as well as a beef marrow croquette. The two components are well matched, with the crisp croquette providing contrast to the creamy, liquid egg.