Monday, 9 December 2013

Mara Shabu at Pasarbella Grandstand

Pasarbella is a quaint farmer’s market at Grandstand, the former Turf City. Pasarbella is nothing like the typical wet market that ‘pasar’ reminds you of; but is all the things beautiful just like a ‘bella’. The place could be a little inaccessible if you do not drive, but there are shuttle buses from Clementi MRT, Toa Payoh MRT and Bukit Timah Centre.

Waiting for shuttle bus to Grandstand, Turf City

We ran and ran to take the MRT after work one day, and then ran and ran to the pick-up point at Clementi MRT because we did not want to miss the shuttle bus which comes only hourly. We were like mad men running through the peak hour crowd, and if anyone were to stop and ask us what we are running for, we would be really embarassed to say “Steamboat buffet”. But steamboat buffet is probably like the only thing that would make us run in our working attire- court shoes and all.

Mara Shabu at Pasarbella Grandstand

Cute Stove at Mara Shabu at Pasarbella Grandstand

Mascot of Mara Shabu at Pasarbella Grandstand

The shuttlebus dropped us off at the Westpoint entrance. Mara shabu is at the left corner of the far end if you enter Pasarbella here. It is a cosy setting at Mara Shabu, especially at the booth seats which are good for a party of two to four. For large groups, there is the long table at the centre of the restaurant. Mara Shabu has this cute mascot which is everywhere in the restaurant- points for brand image and consistency.

Menu of Mara Shabu at Pasarbella Grandstand

Mara Shabu offers 3 types of soup: Mara, Suki Yaki and Shabu Shabu. I like my steamboat soup spicy, and Galen likes it seafoody, so we settled for Mara and Shabu Shabu.

Soup at Mara Shabu at Pasarbella Grandstand

The Mara soup came with tons of spices in the red, fiery broth. It was like a fireworks celebration in that half of the pot. In contrast, the Shabu Shabu soup had only a piece of dark green kelp inside the clear soup. It was like a zen monastery. This pot is perhaps the most telling difference between the Chinese and Japanese culture, if you were to zoom it down to the soup broth each uses.

Organic Vegetables at Mara Shabu Pasarbella

Selection at Mara Shabu Pasarbella

Meat and Seafood Selection at Mara Shabu Pasarbella

The vegetables at Mara Shabu are organic- there were many holes in the leafy vegetables especially, and Galen took that as strong cues that the vegetables were indeed pesticide-free. There was a huge variety of greens, and they were crisp and fresh. There was also a huge selection of seafood and meat- there’s something for everyone! The best dish at Mara Shabu has got to be its beef slices- the thinness and the proportion of meat to fat is perfect!

Sauces at Mara Shabu Pasarbella

Sauce recipes at Mara Shabu Pasarbella

Galen and I usually don’t go for the sauces at steamboat restaurants- we prefer to retain the original taste of the food. However, the sauces at Mara Shabu were so awesome that we went for second servings of it! There were recommended concoctions at the sauce bar, and recipe for each. The recommended sauce for the Shabu Shabu soup was the ponzu sauce, and boy, they were right! The sour soy vinegar-based sauce went really well with the light and clear soup. Another recommendation is the homemade Mara Shabu sauce that was a perfect complement to the Mara soup, and especially good for the thin beef slices. A must-try!

Spread at Mara Shabu Pasarbella

Buffet at Mara Shabu Pasarbella

These was the first of the many rounds we had that evening, outlasting every table at the steamboat buffet restaurant (as usual). Mara Shabu is a great place for a couple or family dinner for its cosy booth seats and wide variety of fresh ingredients; and also a good place for a friends or colleagues gathering for its spacious centre table and its vicinity to good wines and craft beers at Pasarbella. It is definitely a good alternative to the numerous steamboat restaurants at Liang Seah St in Bugis. Remember that the last shuttle bus service to Clementi MRT or Ang Mo Kio MRT leaves the Grandstand at 11pm.

Singapore Food Blog Review by Kumory


Mara Shabu

 #02-K16/17/18/19, PasarBella @ The Grandstand, 200 Turf Club Road Singapore
1130am-3pm; 6pm-10pm daily


  1. Hi
    Thank you for your review on Mara Shabu. We are happy to inform you that we have launch 3 new soup bases recently. They are, Pork Bone (tonkotsu), Tokyo style Miso and Kimchee soup bases. Hope to see you soon.

    Mara Shabu

  2. I will go to singapore next week . I will go Mara Shabu Follower yours review thank you

    1. Hello there, thank you for following my blog! I truly hope you'll enjoy your time here in Singapore - there are so many good food places! Have fun (: