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The next time you’re craving some meat (without your plant-based friends, of course), perhaps you’ll want to head to a Japanese yakiniku restaurant.

Grilled meats aren’t an unfamiliar concept here. After all, you’ll find throngs of guests waiting in line outside plenty of Korean barbecue restaurants along Telok Ayer street.

Yet, though yakiniku is conventionally believed to have been brought to Japan by Korean immigrants who settled in Osaka, and adapted to local tastebuds, not many think of the cuisine when they hankering for some grilled meat.

yakiniku
(Image credtit: Magosaburo)

It’s easy to see why too: yakiniku spots tend to use pricier meats like wagyu and Kobe beef, as the main focus of the cuisine is to draw out the natural flavour of the meat, and many cuts of beef do not come marinated or pre-seasoned.

If you’re salivating for some quality, melt-in-your-mouth cuts, read on for the best yakiniku restaurants in town.

(Hero and featured image credit: Magosaburo)

1
Syohachi Yakiniku

Syohachi Yakiniku in Guoco Tower is the Hong Kong chain’s first overseas outlet, armed with a original A5 wagyu yakiniku concept. The restaurant has been gaining a steady fan base since its inception in mid-Novemeber last year, mostly due to its use of Sendai wagyu beef from an award-winning ranch in Japan as well as its all-you-can-eat mode of dining.

(Image credit: @syohachi_yakiniku_sg via Instagram)

2
Yakiniquest

Yakiniquest might be an odd name at first glance, but you’ll quickly realise the name stems from its managing director Suguru Ishida, who once ate at more than 150 yakiniku joints a year in Japan for 15 years. It seems like the yakiniku quest is truly over for diners in Singapore — we recommend dining on a whole selection of meats on the Wagyu Foodie Omakase, which features six cuts of grilled wagyu, wagyu and uni sashimi, and a beef curry rice or cold noodle side.

(Image credit: @yakiniquest via Instagram)

3
Yakiniku Yazawa

If you’re looking for top-quality meats, your best bet would be Yakiniku Yazawa. The Robertson Quay mainstay sources some of the most premium kuroge wagyu that’s flown directly from Japan, featuring choice cuts like the misuji, chateaubriand and ribeye. Don’t sleep on the silky smooth Wagyu Tartare Don either — it presents a luscious raw egg yolk and marbled beef that rests atop a warm bowl of sticky, sweet rice, which, when mixed together, creates a delicious, silky smooth treat for bovine fans.

(Image credit: @hubertczc via Instagram)

4
Magosaburo

Magosaburou, a Japanese chain from the Kumamoto prefecture, features excellent grade meats like Ohmi and Kobe beef with gorgeous marbling that renders itself to tender, juicy meat after its put to the grill. Apart from consistently good quality meats, what we enjoy most about Magosaburo is its powerful exhaust system that leaves our clothes oil and smell-free even after a hearty dinner out.

5
Yen Yakiniku

Nestled in a quaint shophouse in ann Siang Hill, Yen Yakiniku is where you’d go to if you can’t trust yourself with the cooking. Here, the restaurant’s experienced chefs will be grilling your meats upon order in front of you, so you’ll get to taste the meats in its full glory. Here, feast on mouthwatering cuts like the Wagyu Oyster Blade, Ox Tongue – Thick Cut and the Wagyu Rib Eye, or dive down under with their selection of seafood like the succulent Hokkaido Scallops.

(Image credit: @aokyuen via Instagram)

Jocelyn Tan
Writer
Jocelyn Tan is a travel and design writer who's probably indulging in serial killer podcasts or reading one too many books on East Asian history. When she actually gets to travel, you can find her attempting to stuff her entire wardrobe into her luggage. Yes, she's a chronic over-packer.