Idaten Udon is a self-service casual udon restaurant in Singapore located in Shokutsu 10 Japanese food street on the basement floor of NEX shopping mall in Serangoon. There’s also a new branch which opened a couple of months ago in CitiLink Mall near City Hall MRT. The restaurant reminds me of the type of udon restaurants you would find in Japan where you would first select which size noodle and broth you would like, it would then be promptly handed to you canteen style onto your tray and you would proceed in selecting your side dishes to go with the udon which is usually from a good selection of tempura.
In Idaten Udon not only can you choose the size of your udon but you can choose the flavour of your udon which is something quite unusual and my Japanese friends have told me it is also rare to find in Japan. They have matcha flavour and yuzu flavour available as well as tomato flavour and pumpkin flavour which is only available for a limited period. Of course they have normal udon available too if you don’t fancy any of the flavoured ones. Flavoured udon is $1 extra and it is also only $1 to upsize your portion.
As well as choosing your udon you can select whether you would like it with chicken, beef, pork, fried beancurd or half-boiled egg all in soup or you can have it with no toppings or chilled with dipping sauce. They also have different flavoured soup so you could opt for a Spicy Kimchi Beef Udon, Clam Udon, Curry Udon or a Tori Paitan Udon which is udon in a creamy chicken broth with pieces of chicken. And if you aren’t an udon fan and are just accompanying a friend there then there are also some rice options on the menu including Beef Curry Rice, Beef Sukiyaki Rice and Curry Rice as well as Oden which is an assortment of fishcakes and vegetables which have been stewed in a broth.
Once you’ve decided which udon you would like, you only have to wait a few minutes before your bowl of udon is handed to you and then you can proceed down the line to choose your side dishes or toppings. Idaten Udon have a good selection of tempura including pumpkin, enoki mushroom and prawn to name a few as well as chicken karage (deep fried chicken), deep fried squid, onigiri (rice balls) and inari sushi (sushi rice stuffed into seasoned fried tofu pouches). After selecting your side dishes and toppings you then pay at the till and then you can pick up any condiments that you would like to go with your food.
I chose to have the pumpkin udon since it is only available for a limited period of time and had it in soup with pumpkin and enoki tempura on the side. The pumpkin udon was chewy and fresh, as good an udon as you would find in Japan and it had a mild pumpkin flavour, maybe a bit too mild. The soup was a normal udon dashi broth and was well balanced and not too salty or sweet. The enoki tempura was light and crunchy but the pumpkin tempura was extremely oily and the pumpkin had soaked up a lot of oil.
Overall it was an enjoyable meal and very affordable too, it only cost just over $9 for everything. Idaten Udon is a great restaurant if you want to have quick, no-fuss authentic Japanese food, service is extremely quick and efficient, faster than most fast food restaurants even. They even do takeaway for an extra 50 cents if you’d rather eat at home or if you can’t find a table. This place is really popular so it’s probably best to go during off-peak times. I’ll definitely be back again soon to try the other udon flavours!
Address: Nex #B1-02, 23 Serangoon Central, Singapore 556083
Tel: 6634 4786
Opening hours: Monday – Sunday: 11am – 10pm
Hope you’ve enjoyed my review, please feel free to leave a comment below with your own review of the restaurant or if you have any questions!