Last Updated: April 22, 2019
Located at Jubilee Square in Ang Mo Kio, Yakiniku Ohji is a value-for-money Japanese barbecue buffet restaurant. If you love Japanese cuisine like us, you have to try it.
We were immediately greeted by the friendly staff upon entering the restaurant.
The restaurant served up a wide selection of items for their buffet, considering the very reasonable prices. The a la carte BBQ buffets start at S$19.80+ for adults and S$13.80+ for kids, and includes a stunning variety of 35 items such as chicken pork and a range of different vegetables.
On top of that, for just an additional S$10+ to any of the buffet deals, you can get a Sushi Buffet (add-on S$10+) that included Salmon Belly, Sashimi as well as different makis (Japanese rolls)
As if the first tier isn’t enough, the restaurant offers two other tiers to cater to different crowds. The second tier has the same items as the first but for S$29.80, we got to enjoy Angus beef and US tenderloin.
Lastly, the third tier priced at S$42.80 comes with cuts of Japanese beef such as Beef Tongue, Harami and Skirt Steak.
To enjoy the full experience, we went for the third tier buffet and added on the Sushi Buffet. We wasted no time and ordered several dishes such as Chicken Wings, Angus Beef and Pork Kalbi.
Something I really liked at Yakiniku Ohji was that they used a charcoal grill instead of an electric one.
In the case of the Chicken Wings, the charcoal added a layer of smoky fragrance.
Each bite of the juicy wings was super delightful. It had a slight char on the outside which gave the wings some caramelised sweetness.
However, due to how thick the Chicken Wings were, they took a long time to cook.
My favourite has to be the Angus Beef with its sinful marbling. The meat was thin so it cooked quite quickly on the grill. With just a minute on each side, the beef had a nice brown char that was hard to resist.
The fatty piece of meat melted easily in my mouth, coating my palate with a buttery aftertaste.
Like other steamboat and BBQ restaurants, Yakiniku Ohji has also recently provided a dipping sauce corner to go with the barbecued meats. I would recommend the ponzu sauce with sesame bits in it as well as a little bit of wasabi.
The sesame seeds provided a burst of fragrant nutty aroma. Together with the wasabi, it brought out the sweetness of the Angus Beef slices.
With every order of the second tier buffet, Yakiniku Ohji is also offering a free plate of A4 Wagyu Beef Chuck. I had high hopes for this, knowing that this grade of beef is only second to the prized A5 Wagyu. Like the Angus Beef slices, it also had a significant amount of marbling.
However, despite having cooked it medium rare, the piece of meat was still chewy and didn’t live up to my expectations.
The restaurant also served Beef Tongue, something I found quite interesting as not many restaurants offer it. The Beef Tongue was thinly-sliced and unlike the other beef slices, it looked rather pale. It cooked quickly and had a slightly gamey taste, with an unusual texture.
It had a buttery consistency but did not require me to chew for too long. If you are planning to get the tier three buffet, this would be an item I would definitely recommend ordering.
Moving onto their Sushi Buffet, we ordered several items such as the Salmon Sashimi, Aburi Salmon Roll and the Unagi Cake Sushi Roll.
Although the Unagi Cake Sushi Roll came with large chunks of unagi, there was an even larger slab of rice with no fillings in it. The rice-to-unagi ratio was absurdly disproportionate, so you might want to skip it if you’re cutting down on carbs.
With that being said, the unagi had a thick glaze of teriyaki sauce which gave a sweet and savoury flavour to the fish. I appreciated that they torched the unagi before it was served, melting down the fats and giving the fish an overall smoky taste.
With a good fat-to-lean-meat ratio, the umami piece of unagi practically melted in my mouth.
Similar to the Unagi Cake Sushi Roll, the Aburi Salmon Roll had with a disproportionate aburi-salmon-to-rice ratio.
This time, there was a little bit of seaweed, lettuce and cucumber within the sushi roll. Because of how much rice was given, we could barely taste the freshness of the fish.
Furthermore, the refreshing crunch of the cucumbers was also missing as it was hidden by the huge lump of rice piled around it.
Unfortunately, because of how lean the salmon was, torching it meant that the salmon on top dried up.
We also had to order the Salmon Sashimi, one of the few premium items on the Sushi Buffet (S$10+) menu. The sashimi slices were thickly-cut but we could see the water that the salmon was soaked in. This suggested to us that the sashimi slices were probably frozen and not fresh.
Having a bite of it proved the point. I could taste a very fishy taste, and it also had a slimy texture such that when I bit into it, it fell apart and disintegrated. Overall, the Salmon Sashimi wasn’t fresh and I wouldn’t recommend getting it.
Because of the above-mentioned items from the Sushi Buffet, I felt that it was not worth it as we were pretty full just from the rice in the different rolls. This also prevented us from trying other meats from the BBQ menu.
All things considered, I wouldn’t come back again to Yakiniku Ohji for several reasons. There was a lot going on in the menu, which was complicated and hard to understand because of all the different tiers at different price points.
Secondly, even though we went with the most premium tier three buffet, most of the meats served were rather disappointing. Despite claiming their beef was A4 Wagyu, it was still chewy and lacked the buttery texture which Wagyu has.
Lastly, the Sushi Buffet was definitely a let-down as it was not professionally crafted.
If I were to come back, it would be only for the tier one buffet going for S$19.80+ which would be a great alternative to the other affordable Korean barbecues.
I felt that the tier one buffet was more worth it as their premium cuts of meats for the higher tiers was not worth the money. With that being said, we were shocked to find out that there was a hidden fee of S$2.50+ per pax just for using the charcoal grill.
I would only recommend coming here if you are in the vicinity, but other than that I recommend giving Yakiniku Ohji a miss.
Expected Damage: S$19.80 – S$60 per pax
Price: $ $
Our Rating: 2 / 5
61 Ang Mo Kio Ave 8, Singapore 569814
61 Ang Mo Kio Ave 8, Singapore 569814