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Like the pristine, snowy prefecture in Japan from which he
hails, Chef Takuma Seki practices a culinary ethos of purity,
sincerity and quality. Everyday at IKYU, customers are
treated to food that is well sourced, well conceived, and well
executed -- by a jovial, gamboling and sometimes singing
chef. The spirit of Niigata is in good hands.

Located in hip, fashionable Tiong Bahru and opened in year
of 2012, IKYU – Japanese for “take a break” – continues to
welcome the diner to its edgy, coolly-lit interior and its
“contemporary Japanese cuisine with a touch of discovery.”
When Chef Seki declares that, “The best food is prepared
with the heart” he means it with no-nonsense passion,
because the respect for tradition and the drive for perfection
run deep in the blood of this son of Niigata.

Located on the coast of central Japan, Niigata boasts a
serene landscape of lush rice fields and majestic surrounding
mountains. The prefecture grows the finest rice in Japan: the
Koshi Hikari strain, meaning “Niigata Shining” because the
rice has a pure, beautiful, white color that shines in the light.
The mountain-fed streams of Niigata and the deep,
continuous snowfalls that purify the air also create one of the
purest environments in the world for agriculture, in which
some of the best sake is produced. While Niigata ranks third
in overall sake output in Japan, it accounts for the largest
share of super premium brands.

It is no surprise then that Chef Seki only uses Niigata
“Uonuma” Koshihikari, the highest grade of rice in Japan.
Chef Seki celebrates the ‘jewel’ rice -- its resilience and
delicate sweetness and fragrance, even after cooling – in his
repertoire, using it in his sushi, chirashi, rice balls and fried
garlic rice.

Weaned on the bounteous seafood for which Niigata is also
famed, Chef Seki is devoted to freshness. At IKYU the
seafood, fruits, vegetables and seasonal ingredients that the
restaurant uses are flown directly from Japan’s Tsukiji Fish
Market two times a week. It’s been said that perfection in
cuisine is “when things have the taste of what they are.”
However far he might have come on his professional
journey, Chef Seki is rooted in the culinary soul of his home.
“Food should be something sincere and uncomplicated,” he
smiles. “My job is to make people happy with my food.”




IKYU is the state of mind

Who would insist on offering you only the best rice and sake in Japan — products of Chef Seki’s wintry, pristine home prefecture of Niigata? Or airfreight seafood, fruits and vegetables directly from Japan’s Tsukiji Fish Market three times a week; or serve Miyazaki Champion Beef, arguably the finest Wagyu in the world?


Only IKYU.

As Japanese restaurants go, from its concept to its cuisine to its edgy post-apocalyptic décor, IKYU is anything but typical. Rooted in age-old artisanal traditions, IKYU is at the same time avant-garde and cosmopolitan, owing to Chef Seki’s artistic mind and international experience, which includes 3 years as Chef de Cuisine of celebrity restaurant, Hide Yamamoto, at The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands.

“Food should be something sincere and uncomplicated,” says Chef Seki.

One year into its existence, IKYU has become a joy to the jaded palate, and a balm to the senses in a noisy harried world. In Japanese, IKYU means ‘take a break’. What could be more appropriate?


IKYU is food with heart

IKYU does contemporary Japanese with a touch of discovery. Schooled in classical Japanese cuisine, and having worked in the US, France and Japan, Chef Seki creates in the Japanese culinary idiom with a pronounced western influence. From delectable salads to fried and grilled seafood; from hearty meats and the freshest of sashimi to amazing nigiris and rolls; IKYU’s menu is tantalizingly, appealingly, broad.

It is also flexible, with set, a la carte and omakase options, and seasonal changes for the autumn and winter. The aim is to extract maximum intensities of flavor from the very best ingredients — including “Uonuma” Koshihikari, known as the ‘jewel’ rice of Niigata, and the world-famous Miyazaki Champion Beef — in often surprising ways that mirror the idiosyncratic personality of Chef Seki.

Food that is unpretentious, meticulously sourced, and exquisitely prepared … then humbly proffered for your private delight.

That is IKYU.


Operating Hours: 

Tue - Sun: 11:30 am - 2:30 pm, 5:30 pm - 10:30 pm


Address: 5 Yong Siak StreetSingapore 168643


Best Serves: Japanese,Sushi Bars


Serves: Lunch, Dinner, Sake, Shoju, Wine & Beer


MRT: Tiong Bahru MRT (EW17)


Bus: No. 5, 16, 33, 63, 123, 195, 851 and NR5




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