Dashi Master Marusaya


JT introduced JP and I to his latest haunt, Dashi Master Marusaya, today. Opened a little less than 2 months ago in the Robertson Quay area, this Japanese restaurant is the latest incarnation of the now-defunct Dashi Master Marusaya Udon that was located in Lau Pa Sat. Marusaya is a Tokyo-based wholesaler of aged dried bonito (aka Katsuoboshi) and kelp so it's no surprise that their restaurant focuses on the use of Dashi - a rich soup stock made from aged dried bonito and kelp.

Wafudashi Pasta Set at Dashi Master Marusaya, Robertson Quay
Wafudashi Pasta Set Lunch @ S$25
Japanese Style Capellini in Dashi topped with Nori, Shiso & Mentaiko
Onigiri, Chawanmushi, Potato Salad & Dessert

Intent on introducing the umami-rich flavour of natural "dashi" to customers in Singapore, the soup stock is the main ingredient in most of the dishes at Marusaya. J was insistent that I had to try the Wafudashi Pasta even though I was quite tempted by the ramen dish. I took his advice and ordered it. A Japanese-inspired pasta dish, thin strands of Capellini (aka Angel Hair) sat within a bowl of Dashi. Topped with julienned Nori (dried seaweed) and Shiso (Perilla leaf) along with a spoonful of Mentaiko (spicy cod roe) and a little block of butter that melted quickly into the Dashi, the staff told me to stir well before eating for maximum enjoyment. Capellini is one of my favourite types of pasta and I love a bowl of hot comforting soup on a rainy day so I took to it like duck to water. The broth was flavourful without being excessively salty and was thickened slightly by the Mentaiko and melted butter that seemed to bind the flavours together and made the broth cling a little better to the smooth pasta. I loved the peppery flavour of Shiso and the toasty flavour of Nori too. The Wafudashi Pasta is a Must-Try! The perfectly smooth Chawanmushi (savoury egg custard) was made with Dashi which lent a hint of flavour and is worth a try.

Testing the restaurant's knives by requesting that my Onigiri be cut into 2/3 & 1/3 portions.
Testing the restaurant's knives by requesting that my Onigiri be cut into 2/3 & 1/3 portions

The Potato Salad was addictively light and fluffy so we found ourselves finishing our portions even though we kept talking about watching our carb intake. Another diet-killer is the tasty salmon-stuffed Onigiri that I shared with JT. I'm watching my carb-intake so well, I eyeball and take photos of carbs before eating.

Goma (Black Sesame) Ice Cream at Marusaya
Black Sesame Ice Cream

We were served a scoop each of Black Sesame (Goma) Ice Cream as part of our set lunch. The ice cream had a good balance of smokiness and nuttiness without being too sweet or slightly bitter. A lovely dessert to top a delish meal.

Dried Kelp & Aged Dried Bonito at Marusaya
Dried Kelp & Aged Dried Bonito available for sale at Marusaya

When we were there, it seemed as if a little more than half their clientele were Japanese expatriates living in the area. A good sign, I guess considering there are so many dining options. If you'd like to make your own Dashi at home, you'd be pleased to know that Marusaya sells Dried Kelp and Aged Dried Bonito within the restaurant.

Freshly shaved Bonito at Marusaya. #JapaneseFood #foodporn

A video posted by Karen Wee (@superfinefeline) on

JT is so hooked onto the food, he has visited Marusaya thrice in four days! The staff recognized him and began explaining that the shaved bonito toppings offered for some of the dishes were freshly shaved just before serving. This kind Japanese gentleman even showed us how they shave Bonito in the restaurant. I was told that you can buy a box of your own if you'd like to try it at home...just be really careful with the sharp blade.

Bekuhai Sake Cups & Die for Japanese Drinking Games at Marusaya, Robertson Quay
Bekuhai Sake Cups & Die for Japanese Drinking Games

Marusaya isn't just all about Dashi and noodles, it also offers dishes that are found in "Izakayas" (watering holes with Japanese-style pub food). They showed us an interesting set of 3 Bekuhai sake cups that were fashioned after masks and could not be put down until they were empty. The cups were accompanied by a 6-sided die that looked like a cross between a bottle and a top. This looks like fun. Time to round up some sake-loving friends and designated drivers (like moi!).

Green Tea at Marusaya
Green Tea


I loved the Kyusu teapot and teacup that the Green Tea was served in. The pot's shape reminds me of my own Yixing Teapot albeit with a saucepan-like handle instead.

Frozen Beer - 1/2 pint & a full pint at Marusaya
Frozen Beer

We were suffering from food coma after lunch so we decided to chill outdoors instead with a glass each of Frozen Beer. I'm not much of a beer drinker but I was curious about the frozen beer foam so I had half a pint too. I loved the "snow-peaked" foam caps on each glass. The texture was like a much lighter form of  slushie with a hint of alcohol. Apparently, it helps to keep the beer cold which is great in tropical Singapore. This is worth a try if you like beer and soft-serve ice cream.

Dashi Master Marusaya
86 Robertson Quay,
#01-01 Robertson Blue,
(located a few doors away from Toby's Estate at the spot previously occupied by Anthesis) 
Singapore 238245
Phone: +65 6732 0383
Operating Hours: 
Monday - Saturday: 11.30 am to 2.30 pm & 5 pm to midnight
Sunday: 11.30 am to 11 pm