New Japanese Butchery & Sando Shop Gyu San Opens in Tanjong Pagar

Gyu San is the one-stop butchery to go to for premium Japanese wagyu offered from farm to table exclusively over the counter. Prime selections like striploin, tenderloin and ribeye are offered alongside secondary cuts that are just as sought after like the flank, oyster blade and tri tip for the largest range of over 55 Japanese wagyu cuts. The Gyu San team procures all Japanese wagyu directly from different prefectures of Japan, and will continue to evolve the variety offered at the butchery through the different seasons of the year.

Gyu San’s sando shop is the only place in Singapore where you can get top-grade Japanese wagyu fat-fried katsu sandos and chips. Savour the goodness of true Japanese wagyu through the crispy and juicy wagyu katsu sando crafted by Chef Tomoyuki Kiga; or through a beefy feast whipped up at home with your favourite Japanese wagyu cuts from the butchery, helmed by Chef Linh, one of Singapore’s few female butchers. Gyu San is proud to be the first-of-its-kind butchery and sando shop to serve beef the way they do.

The Japanese Master Behind the Sando

The hands behind the katsu sando is Chef Tomoyuki Kiga, who brings his culinary prowess from stints at 2 Michelin-starred restaurants like Ristorante Aso in Daikanyama, Tokyo, and Melisse in Santa Monica, USA. He also spearheaded the openings of Akira Back in Jakarta, New Delhi and Singapore. During his time at Akira Back Singapore, the restaurant was awarded the MICHELIN Plate in 2018, 2019, and 2021 under his innovative culinary leadership.

An avid world traveller, Chef Tomoyuki’s upbringing is a colourful patchwork quilt of the many different fabrics of cultures and life, shaping his global outlook in his brand of cuisine. Carrying with him 14 years of culinary arts experience from around the world, he carves a niche in his attention to detail and focus on creating memorable dishes using refined techniques, bold flavours, contrasting textures and playful presentation – and this time, with a new generation of sustainably farmed beef at Gyu San.

Carving up the beef for Chef Tomoyuki’s katsu sandos and Gyu San’s butchery is Chef Linh, one of the few female butchers in the industry and in Singapore. A third-generation Michelin-trained female chef, Chef Linh comes from a long lineage of chefs, some of whom have spent time in the mecca of cuisine – France. Her grandmother trained in Ferrandi Paris in 1920 and her mother, a renowned chef and even more successful entrepreneur, owns and runs one of the most famous banh canh cua crab noodle soup stalls in Saigon. Chef Linh got her formal training at Ferrandi Paris at the Ecole de Gastronomie Française before returning to Singapore after two years, motivated by her love for the country. 

The Satsuma Gyu Goodness

To kickstart its grand opening, Gyu San is collaborating with Kamichiku’s Satsuma Gyu, where 78% of its cattle are graded A4 and above, and is taken from cattle raised only by 12 select Kagoshima-based farmers with the status of Meijin. In particular, all of Gyu San’s wagyu katsu sandos are made with the prized Satsuma Gyu 4% Miracle. Living up to its name, only the top 4% of Satsuma Gyu with the finest quality of grade A5 make the cut. It is said to be richly marbled with a full-bodied flavour and distinguishing texture. From Gyu San’s butchery, you can also find the prized Satsuma Gyu 4% Miracle to be enjoyed at home.

Every 5 years, Japan holds the most respected championship in the world to find the best wagyu. The last Wagyu Olympic brought together over 400,000 craft beef producers from 39 prefectures all across Japan. Kamichiku Kagoshima beef, also known as Satsuma Gyu, was proudly crowned first place in the overall grade of 513 cows, which makes it the best Japanese wagyu in the world right now.

Kagoshima is one of the few beef-producing prefectures that remain self-sustaining, feeding their cattle with house-made feed from the by-products of premium rice that’s used to make sake and shoyu producers in Kagoshima. The feed also changes according to the harvest season, reflecting the by-products of that respective season’s harvest.

Champions of true Japanese Wagyu

Adding onto the portfolio of prime beef sold at the butchery, there’s the Kanzaki Gyu from Iwate prefecture that is known to be 100% free of antibiotics. The cattle is fed with an eco 100% organic feed of local produce such as tofu, hops and whisky by-products. This results in the meat having a low melting point for its fat, perfect for rendering, while retaining a refreshing feel in the mouth. The use of ‘fermented feed’ brings about the highest umami content in the feed, resulting in one-of-a-kind flavours in the meat. The ranch also places priority in the cow’s health and wellbeing, breeding and raising them in the most stress-free environment as possible.

There’s also the Hida Gyu from Gifu prefecture, beef that underwent strict conditions to even earn the title in the first place. To gain the Hida Gyu title that differentiates it from the more commonly found Hida Wagyu, it undergoes four strict check points of quality control for consistency: it must be bred by a certified and registered farmer in the ‘Hida Beef Council’, must come from black-haired Japanese cattle and raised for at least 14 months and must achieve a grading of A3 and above. Gifu is one of the oldest prefectures that has been breeding cows solely for the production of prime meat, grading  A5 and above in the national average ranking.

Bite into the crispiest, juiciest Gyu Katsu Sando, where a prime steak cut of marbled A5 Japanese wagyu crusted in panko crumbs is deep-fried to a golden hue before being lightly spread with a delectable wasabi aioli and sandwiched between two slices of lightly toasted crustless shokupan. Choose from options of the Gyu San house cut ($32), striploin ($48) or the chateaubriand ($62) for your beef. It’s great on its own, and even better with a glass of sake.

Other options include the Tamagoyaki Katsu Sando ($18) with a fluffy thick omelette patty glazed with wasabi aioli nestled within; the Ebi Katsu Sando ($28) which tempts with a fresh minced shrimp patty, deep-fried and doused in a housemade tartare sauce; and the Fresh Fruits Sando ($12), a refreshing light Japanese fruit dessert sandwich stuffed with juicy seasonal fresh fruits and housemade whipped custard cream.

Other sides entice with items like Wagyu Chips ($8), sliced russet potatoes fried to thin, crisp chips that will have you yearning for more. There is also the A5 Yakiniku Salad ($18) for yakiniku lovers, and the refreshing Green Salad ($8) which sees fresh crisp greens in Gyu San dressing.

The Home of Gyu

At its sando shop, select and enjoy your favourite katsu sando in an intimate home of sprawling floor-to-ceiling glass windows. The space seats no more than 25 persons with a cosy indoor section and an airy alfresco area. At its butchery, select premium Japanese wagyu cuts of your choice for gourmet eating at home. Experience Japan’s world-class wagyu in-house or to-go, as a katsu sando or as your choice of cut in a homecooked recipe. Gyu San is your one-stop haven for Japanese prime beef served at its finest, in its finest.

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