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19 Apr 2018 By

Le Binchotan is a Vault-like Space that Holds Culinary Treasures, With Smoked Dishes Created Through French Traditions and Japanese Techniques.

Everything at Le Binchotan starts with its namesake charcoal, the binchotan, which begins life as ubame oak from the Wakayama Prefecture. Its end product burns at a lower temperature for a longer period compared to ordinary charcoal – its ‘no-flare’ qualities also prevents charring, and produces a deep smokier flavour. (Also has a fascinating glass-like sound when tapped).


Although everything actually begins with Chef Jeremmy Chiam, who went from head chef of the restaurant to owner and chef. Before that he’d trained under Chef Hiroki Yoshitake of Michelin-starred Sola, Paris, when he worked at Jewel Box; Chiam also had a stint at Iggy’s.

le binchotan jeremmy

Le Binchotan then is a culmination of his culinary loves, and also a combination of French techniques and centuries-old Japanese grilling over binchotan – all using ingredients from the two countries.

There’s plenty to love about the food.

The Grilled Hokkaido Scallops ($18) is a winner. The scallops are simply grilled over the binchotan for a smoky flavour, the ebi rice paper garnish is created by coating Vietnamese rice paper with sakura ebi, dehydrated and then deepfried until crispy.

The Cold Smoked Hamachi ($24) – another winner – is lightly cold-smoked in-house with apple wood, then thinly sliced. The resulting texture is feels like a boat ride in Okinawa. Also great: The Uni & Caviar ($25), with Japanese corn in bacon broth, charred corn, caviar, smoked sea salt, bafun uni and shoyu pearls.

You should also order: The Little Neck Clams, Sakura Ebi Capellini and the Edible Charcoal.

A Martini. The signature cocktails tend to be sweet, aim for the classics but be specific.

Love the cavernous interior. It’s also opened for lunch, and there are private rooms for small parties.

This is interesting though, it’s a cocktail omakase where you get a sampler to decide which flavour profile you like, then order your cocktail. We somehow ended with three tasters that were quite similar (read: sweet). If you prefer something to match your smoked dishes, spring for the fine wine selection.

There’s set lunch as well: 2 course $27++, 3 course $34++, 4 course $42++; added $15 for a housepour if you’re with good company.

115 Amoy Street #01-04 Singapore 069935 (Entrance via Gemmill Lane), tel: 6224-1045.

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