Tsukada Nojo: Famous For Beauty Collagen Hot Pots

Tsukada Nojo

I’ve recently blogged about the excellent service staff at Big O Cafe & Restaurant (click on the link to read), and today, I had lunch at Tsukada Nojo at Chinatown Point and AGAIN experienced good service! Either service standards are rising across the island or there’s some serious Law Of Attraction at work. 🙂  For some reason, the name ‘Tsukada Nojo’ is quite hard for Singaporeans to remember so my pals always tell me about this hot pot place with a special beauty broth (美人鍋) that will supposedly give me great skin. How does one say ‘no’ to that?

I think it costs S$25++ or so per pax. At lunch today, I ordered their ramen, which I suppose comes with the same collagen broth. Their “beauty collagen stock” is made using organic chicken from Japan. The chicken is stewed for more than 8 hours till the chicken bones dissolve. The restaurant also uses organic vegetables sourced from a farm in Singapore.

When it comes to collagen broths, nothing beats the Kyushu Jangara Ramen I had in Japan. My goodness! That broth is to-die-for. It frustrates me to no end wondering why even fast food in Japan can sometimes taste way better than food served in some other restaurants in Singapore. WHY?! Is it the chef’s dedication to his craft? Is it the Japanese people’s patience in awaiting good food that may sometimes take a while longer to prepare? Is it the appreciation that customers show to the chefs in Japan (such as by slurping up those noodles loudly)?

What is it?!

I have not figured it out yet, but maybe one day I will.

Meanwhile, I have to say that the collagen broth at Tsukada Nojo is good – maybe not great like in Japan, but it’s tasty enough. Anyway, just keep chanting “Collagen, collagen, COLLAGEN” in your head and you’ll finish every last drop. 😀

As mentioned earlier, the staggeringly high standards when it comes to food in Japan could be due to the Japanese chefs’ dedication to putting out only the best and the Japanese customers’ way of patiently awaiting their food, but there’s nothing I can do about that.

What I can do, though, is to highlight good service whenever I spot it, and hopefully it spurs the whole team on to greater heights.

Here’s the feedback I sent to Tsukada Nojo via their website:

Tsukada Nojo staff

The restaurant has, in my opinion, done well in two aspects:

  1. Enthusiastic welcomes: When a customer steps into the restaurant, welcomes are shouted out by the staff member who spots him/her, and then echoed by the rest of the staff. (I think it also helps in staff morale and team spirit, because they are doing something together, i.e. extending a warm welcome to customers)
  2. Staff who engage customers in conversation: Because I was dining alone, I did not feel comfortable with asking my server for his name. (But I found that out anyway near the cashier counter as there are pictures of the staff together with their names. Hehe) I believe it was Keta who served me – he came round to ask if I’d enjoyed the meal and whether the broth was too rich (I said it was almost on par with those in Japan… didn’t want to hurt his feelings). But the broth was good, ok. As he cleared the table and I finished up the refill of my hot Japanese tea, he told me (before he left for the kitchen) to have a nice day in case I’d left the restaurant before he returned. How lovely!

~

So there you go… my recommendation of a Japanese restaurant if you want to dine at Chinatown Point. For really good zhi char style dishes, head to the basement – there’s one fantastic one and all you need to do is look out for the crowd. (I forgot the name of the place. Ha!) But don’t you forget to compliment staff and let the management know too, ok? 🙂

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Staying At Amoy Hotel and Exploring Chinatown

Singapore Chinatown

Chinatown

I enjoyed my stay at Amoy Hotel primarily because of its awesome location – Chinatown is a foodie’s paradise. Read my Amoy Hotel review here and a little piece on the Fuk Tak Chi Museum right here. I’d checked in on a Sunday, when most of the restaurants and shops around the hotel were closed. It was no cause for worry because just 5 to 10 minutes away is the rest of Chinatown where I can shop and mainly, eat to my heart’s content. So here’s a quick (and hopefully useful) guide to what to do / see / eat after you have dropped off your luggage at Amoy Hotel!

For the foodie:

In the immediate vicinity of the hotel are restaurants like Hock Lam Beef, Honzen Express and Sushi Tei (among others) – all of which I would recommend. For breakfast, you can also skip the hotel breakfast if it does not impress you and pop by Ya Kun Kaya Toast to taste what locals would eat – kaya toast, soft-boiled eggs and a cup of coffee.

If you don’t have much time to explore other parts of Singapore for good food, then you are in luck! The newly-opened Chinatown Food Street brings together the best of hawker food around the island. Head over to the Food Street to try satay from Newton Circus, BBQ Chicken Wings from Chomp Chomp, Cheng Kee Hokkien Mee, Fried Oysters from Katong, and much much more!

Chinatown Food Street

Chinatown Food Street Oyster Omelette

Chinatown Food Street Hokkien Mee

Chinatown Food Street Fried Horfun

The Chinatown Food Street, at night:

Chinatown Food Street

At tea time, you can also head to Tong Heng for some very yummy egg tarts. I sure did. Just S$1.60 each:

Sri Mariamman Temple

To get to Tong Heng, just look out for the yellow signboard after you have passed the Sri Mariamman Temple:

Tong Heng Egg Tarts

* If you can afford the extra calories *

Try the very famous Lim Chee Guan bak kwa (barbecued pork slices) that locals eat mainly during Lunar New Year, but is available year-round. You can order just 100g of that barbecued goodness for a sampling or even consider getting 1kg to bring home to friends and family! [A kg usually costs about S$50]

Lim Chee Guan

For Dessert:

Head to Chinatown Point, where you will find, at the basement, Mei Heong Yuen Dessert, which is popular for its range of ‘snow ice desserts’.

Mei Heong Yuen Dessert

One other dessert place at Chinatown Point is Hong Kong Sheng Kee Dessert, which I would not recommend for their desserts, but their mains instead:

Hong Kong Sheng Kee Dessert Chinatown Point

I like their Braised Beef Hor Fun (S$7.90)

For the health-conscious foodie:

Pop by China Square Central (less than a 5 minute walk away) and head to the basement. At #B1-02 is LINS Smoodees where you can order green smoothies which are oh-so-yummy and so good for your body. Do try their herbal porridge as well, which I highly recommend. If you’re experiencing jet lag or just feeling under the weather, what you get at LINS will surely perk you up.

For the gym rat:

Amoy Hotel does not come with a gym, but just downstairs is the Evolve Mixed Martial Arts studio. Pop by for a workout if you will. A little further is True Fitness at China Square Central’s basement.

For the photography enthusiast:

If you like snapping pictures of temples and/or visiting them, there is the famous Buddha Tooth Relic Temple and the equally famous Sri Mariamman Temple (the oldest Hindu temple in Singapore).

Buddha Tooth Relic Temple

Sri Mariamman Temple

The Sri Mariamman Temple was constructed in 1827 and today, it is best known for the fire-walking ceremony, or Theemithi, that is held every October or November. Devotees would walk on hot coals as a test of their faith and devotion.

Other places of interest: 

The Singapore Coins and Notes Museum and The TinTin Shop:

Singapore Coins And Notes Museum

The TinTin Shop

For the shopaholic:

At Chinatown Point are some shops which may interest you. Fans of branded goods will love Luxury City where branded items (supposedly authentic, but of past seasons) are sold at a discount. Also visit the Adidas pop-up store if you would like to get some cheap sporting gear – for instance, you can get a pair of Adidas running shoes at just over S$60.

Luxury City Chinatown Point

Adidas Chinatown Point

*This list is by no means exhaustive of course. Just what I did after checking in at Amoy Hotel. 🙂 If you need more recommendations, feel free to approach the staff.

Chinatown

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