Gyu San, Guoco Tower, Tanjong Pagar, Singapore

Address: 7 Wallich St, Unit 01 – 03 Guoco Tower, Singapore 078884
Opening Hours: Daily 11:30am – 9:00pm
Gyu San Reservations

There’s a new sando spot in town, and it’s in in my favorite area in Singapore, Tanjong Pagar. Gyu San is in Guoco Tower, where Chateraise and Japan Rail Cafe also sits. The area of Tanjong Pagar is growing to become a modern Japan town, from tempura joints (Tendon Ginza Itsuki, for one) to sukiyaki restaurants (Beef Sukiyaki Don Keisuke, one of my favorites) and coffee movers (Baristart) that it’s hard not to think of the area if you’re craving for Japanese food.

Gyu San earns a spot in my list, though Pipes by Hattendo’s Kurobuta Pork Sando narrowly still wins my choice. (of course, the cream puff sweetens the deal, while Gyu San has no sweets to offer.) Gyu San serves different wagyu cuts in sando dishes from A4 rib eye to the Chateaubriand and the cheaper Gyu Sando ($32). I picked the Gyu Sando, because quite frankly, if they can’t pull off what most customers are likely to order then why would I spend $68 on a Chateaubriand or even a $42 Striploin? Fortunately the Gyu Sando is passable. Kamikachu’s Satsumaa Gyu in 4% Miracle House Cut is sandwiched between two pieces of toast — a very mediocre and thin piece of bread. The rest of the wagyu oil drips as you take a bite of the tender meat (and a subtle crunch of the panko breading, much appreciated), which I feel could have been improved with the use of Shokupans. After all, Sandos, were born during the Dutch trading in 1600s and the Japanese used Shokupans.

To the uninitiated, try Pipes by Hattendo and even Lavender Bakery’s Nama Shokupan to taste the chewy difference between the ordinary toast and a shokupan.

Gyu San Tare and Wasabi Aioli seasons the sando sparingly with occasional sweet flavors, which some commented to be too sweet. It’s almost like getting the notes of a gyudon bowl.

The Wagyu Chips ($8) aren’t earth-shattering as I expected, and the Gyu San Furikake saved it. There is little wagyu beef flavor in the chips at all, but for a group sharing, the chips are a much needed presence on the table. To be honest, one order isn’t enough for groups of 3 and more.

The price is cheap, considering other Japanese joints like Fat Cow who serves wagyu sandos at a steep $88. I’m inclined to try out the highly raved Ebi Sando and the fluffy Tamagoyaki in my next visit, but I’m quite certain my meat-loving tendencies would lead me to eat another round of wagyu sandos again. One drawback that prevents me from going back were the seemingly many “Chope reserved” outdoor tables (for non-existent reservations)… which annoyed me. I dislike dishonest tactics done by restaurants to squeeze sales from customers. Especially being told that they only accept cash, when PayNow is also accepted.