5 Reasons To Visit Noka, A Rooftop Japanese Restaurant At Funan Mall
The restaurant uses local produce to craft Japanese dishes, and follows the same concept of grow your own food and sustainable farming
Noka at Funan is Spa Esprit Group’s latest offering to Singapore’s buzzing dining scene. The sister outlet to Open Farm Community at Dempsey Hill, it follows the same concept of grow your own food and sustainable farming with a 5,000sqft rooftop urban farm established in partnership with Edible Garden City. It has over 50 varieties of fruits and vegetables that head chef Seki Takuma uses in his Japanese fare.
Veteran Japanese chef
Niigata-born Takuma has over 20 years of culinary experience, during which he worked at renowned establishments such as The Beverly Hills Hotel in Los Angeles and the now-defunct Hide Yamamoto in Singapore. Using traditional Japanese culinary techniques that he had mastered under the tutelage of veteran chefs, he whips up his unique dishes with locally grown ingredients and Japanese produce.
Inventive fare using Japanese and local produce
The marriage of local ingredients and Japanese cooking techniques is particularly evident in signatures such as black cod saikyo‑yaki, sourced from Japan, where the fish is glazed in sweet miso and delicately charred. It’s garnished with ikura, sweet potato crisps, puffed black rice infused with seaweed, salt and sugar, as well as homegrown Mexican tarragon. The snow-aged Niigata Wagyu is grilled over charcoal, and enlivened with fresh Okinawan spinach and yuzu ponzu.
Carefully curated sake list
Takuma and restaurant manager Paul Lui have crafted a concise sake selection mostly sourced from Niigata, which is home to some of Japan’s finest rice wines. Among the choices here are the highly sought‑after Kubota Junmai Daiginjo, which has an exquisitely smooth body, and the limited-edition Wakimizu with golden leaf, a fruity sake with shimmering gold flakes.
Surrounded by glass walls that overlook the rooftop farm, and swathed in hues of white and light brown, the restaurant’s 1,800sqft space, which features rattan furniture, stays true to Japanese minimalist aesthetics. White umbrellas hanging from the ceiling add a touch of whimsy to an otherwise simple-looking restaurant. The space is anchored by a large open kitchen where Takuma and his team showcase their deft skills in preparing their modern offerings.