There are generally two kinds of restaurants.
One, the fine-dining where you pay hefty prices for a tasteful experience. Two, the unpretentious who renders hearty homey food and send you leaving like a happy kid. Botan belongs to the second.
Familiar to the office crowd, Botan is most notorious for dishing out overly generous portions. Their Chirashi Don ($25) is arguably the most liberally filled chirashi in town and sure to fill even the hungriest diner.
Never underestimate how far this bowl can take you.
Uncovering the sashimi garden, some fresh some not so, i found morsels of hamachi, maguro, ebi, kani and fat-gleaming salmon (orange-to-white ratio hovering around 2:3?) over a crazily compact bed of rice. Oily fish is love and i rarely dismiss excessive fats. A spoonful of tobikko (flying fish roe) and some sweet pink cod floss contributes to enliven the dish.
But before you proceed into your rice, i suggest you have the chawanmushi first. Their silky, clean-tasting steamed egg custard with shiitake, fishcake & chicken met expectations and felt strikingly homey.
While nearing chirashi-completion, a realization struck me... Where was my tamagoyaki? If memory didn't fail me i recall having some tamago during my previous visit. After prodding the waitress, she returned with 2 omelette rectangles & then directed my attention towards the sushi chef... who gave two apologetic nods for his busy lunch-hour negligence. How mannerly.
Omg this was superb stuff. The meticulously layered sponge was baby soft like never before & finished off with a tiny smack of savouriness... nice!
The Botan Set ($25) consisted of sashimi, tempura, fried tofu, chicken and a compartment of random items. For those who like a variety.
The comfort derived here is one of a kind.
P.S. It is really easy to miss Botan's obscure signboard so do look out!
Botan Japanese Restaurant
36 Pekin Street
#01-01 Far East Square