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Best food streets in shopping malls

Not street food, but a collection of restaurants (usually Japanese) tucked in malls. Here are some of the best places to eat while you’re out shopping

When it comes to fuelling your bellies in between bouts of window shopping, forget your fast food joints and chain restaurants – these food streets will do the job.

Emporium Shokuhin
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Emporium Shokuhin

This edible aquarium and meat market opened with plenty of fanfare, but if your fancily renovated kitchen is more for show than for making meals, you won't miss out on the premium goods stocked here. The eight restaurants on this end of Marina Square – each cover different styles of Japanese cooking – and are all said to use the same, fresh seafood and meats stocked in Emporium Shokuhin.

Gyuu+ Yakiniku Grill, for example,features the A5 Miyazaki, USDA and Australian beef aged in a special in-house facility for grilling ($24-$56/portion). And Umi+Vino Seafood Wine Bar serves up the sea life you see in tanks and on ice fresh and chilled ($15-$48), in sashimi cuts ($12-$27/three to five pieces), or cooked à la plancha ($13-$48). Seasonal oysters from Europe, some imported here directly by Emporium Shokuhin, are also served on the half shell ($6-$8). 

The plush Takujo Japanese Dining up in front pushes the $98-a-person price point for a seasonal omakase-style meal. But if all you're looking for is a quick afternoon pick-me-up, head to the Ready-to-Eat Section, adjacent to Emporium's takeout counters, where sushi packs, bentos and salads lie in wait. 

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City Hall
Japan Food Town
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Japan Food Town

Located on the fourth floor of Wisma Atria, Japan Food Town houses 16 different Japanese food concepts under one roof. Choose from restaurants serving dishes like Tokyo chef Sato Yosuke's inaniwa udon, 'rice sommelier'-picked grains shaped into low-calorie rice balls from Bonta Bonta, grilled black-haired wagyu by Heijyoen from the Japanese capital, and a sake bar stocked with Dassai brewery's rice wine.

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Orchard
Eat at Seven
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Eat at Seven

This group of seven concepts perched on Suntec City's Sky Garden has been a year and some in the making. ENBU kicked things off in June 2015, pouring Japanese craft beer and firing kushiyaki sticks over straw and charcoal in a warayaki method that hails from the Kochi Prefecture in Japan – the brand claims to be the first in Singapore to do so.

Quite soon after, Nigiro Café (#03-315) set up shop, armed with bold claims that it serves Tokyo's best Caesar salad ($9.50/half, $20/full), and the house signature hamburg steak ($24). It's not saying much if you consider that the salad is more a Mexican invention than another marvel of Japanese inspiration, but superlatives are what Eat at Seven peddles in. 

For meat lovers, Tokyo's NikuNoHi's (#03-316) first overseas branch specialises in hot plate yakiniku ($28.50-$48.50/100g) and wagyu sashimi ($21/four pieces). And down the row, Maguro-Donya Miura-Misaki-Kou Sushi and Dining (#03-314) jets in magurop on ANA airplanes, serving the fish in five-cut platters ($49), gunkan-style sushi ($18) and lunch sets ($79) that feature bluefin top loin, bottom loin and grilled cheek. Already, Eat at Seven has shaped up as one of the better ways to get your belly filled in a mall. 

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City Hall
Japan Food Garden
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Japan Food Garden

Located within Food Republic Shaw House, Japan Food Garden is a cluster of five Japanese stalls. Akasaka Yukun is a steamed unagi specialist; Genki Japan offers freshly made soba, tempura and donburi; Banzaiya is a small plates concept from Kyoto; Bears Curry Café and Bar serves Japanese curry rice, coffee and alcoholic beverages; and Gyu Tetsu Teppanyaki is exactly what it says on the tin.

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Orchard
Shokutsu 10 at Jurong Point
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Shokutsu 10 at Jurong Point

You've seen their concepts dotted in malls across town, but at Jurong Point, the RE&S group's portfolio is on show: Kuriya Japanese Market, Men-Ichi Japanese Ramen and Ichiban Boshi dot a kitsch Japanese-style street market, complete with a cloudy blue-lit ceiling that mimics a summery sky.

Not all the grub here's a sit-down affair – cafés like Kabe No Ana Japanese Pasta, Green Pumpkin Japanese Bakery and Shabu Tontei Japanese Hot Pot also share square footage with food stands selling to-go portions of karaage and oden. A branch of Shokutsu 10 opened a few years earlier at nex in Serangoon, but with far fewer theatrics than its counterpart out in the west. 

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Jurong West
Isetan Orchard
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Isetan Orchard

After a makeover, Isetan Orchard now boosts its basement level supermarket with new nooks to retreat to for a munch break. We were first clued into the store's aims of aligning itself as a dining destination when its Kaki-Uchi Sake Bar popped up in the supermarket’s fridge section, serving a range of sakes that rotates every two weeks to drink in store.

The revamp also adds the first overseas five-seater outpost of Dashi Bar serving chewy udon and soba noodles in dashi broth, and Yaoya Fruit Juice Bar whizzing seasonal fruits like sweet potato, grapes and strawberries into drinks (from $3.90) you can take away. WA-Dining continues to run a stand packing premium meats like Kagoshima wagyu and black Kurabuta pork into bento boxes, and the three takeaway bread, pastry and cake stands that are Johan Paris, Matsuzo Potato, and Châteraisé each retail exclusive-to-Singapore creations, like the yuzu bread from the French-Japanese Johan bakery brand.

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Orchard
Insadong Korea Town
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Insadong Korea Town

This sprawling Resorts World Sentosa 'Korea Town' is more food court than a thoroughfare of restaurant concepts. But still, you probably won't find this many Korean dishes in one spot anywhere else in town – over 200 at last count. The ingredients used at the stalls here are said to be flown in direct from the mothership, and dishes cover the gamut of Korean-Chinese, Korean-Western, Korean-Japanese, and err, Korean-Korean – traditional ginseng chicken soups ($29), and the like.

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Sentosa

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