(Dojo has since ceased operations at Circular Road and moved to 313@Somerset. Updated address listed below.)
The month of October had seen many cafes opening, which got us quite tired of cafe fare even though we had quite a couple of great meals. To switch things up, we decided to try out Dojo, a new eatery specialising in burgers at Circular Road.
Dojo is not your typical burger joint though; forget about your beef and chicken patties here. Pork is the main star here; all burgers are different variants of pork patties, ranging from grilled to fried. Even when it comes to their sides, those involving meat has only pork. Just think of them as the all-things Pork burger specialist.
My dining partner and I shared a side of Pork Nuggets. These were like Pork Cutlet in smaller pieces; fried to golden brown and crisp. The batter was not particularly thick, so each piece comes with meat to bite though I would have appreciated it more if it came in chunkier sizes. I personally found the Honey Chili that came on the side particularly intriguing; it added a natural sweetness to the pork, though it could have been more spicier to give the kick that it lacked of.
Coming to Dojo with a half-filled stomach, I went for the Komba Bao; an item that was recommended by the cashier which seemed to be rather popular here. Take your regular bun from your Kong Bak Bao, fry it and stuff it with crisp yet chunky pork pieces with some fatty chunks mixed in that is all braised thoroughly. If you think its not healthy enough, they have also added some greens to absorb the oils, which gives the bun a refreshing crunch. At $6 for two pieces, this was pretty good for a light meal by itself.
One thing I dislike about hipster burger joints these days is that they often make you spend more by separating burgers from the side. Dojo does it the way I prefer it to be; each burger comes with a side of fries and drink, making it a complete set. My dining partner chose the Hadoken; a pork patty burger topped with spicy meat sauce, cheese and diced onions with bacon. Patty was handmade from minced pork, achieving a consistency that is firm to hold itself together but still juicy and tender. It also had some cheese in it to hold on the meat, adding to its own savoury flavour. Bacon seemed a tad chewy, so fans of crisp bacon might be disappointed. One thing I noticed was the buns; light and fluffy, and more important to note was the bottom bun which retained its texture without turning all wet and soggy from the pork patty! We opted for the Chili Cheese Fries at an additional $2; well worth it as it came smothered in cheese sauce and a real generous layer of spicy haebee-spiked minced pork that was oh-so-good. If that isn’t your thing, opt for the normal fries and dip them in the accompanied salsa dip; its just as satisfying.
Singapore had seen a number of burger joints in the recent years, but Dojo itself seemed to be of a rather interesting concept from the rest. It’s full pork menu might make it seem a bit restricted in variety, but its also where it shines with its Asian-influenced menu. It would be interesting to see how Dojo would do in the long run, competing with neighbouring eateries that are just as fancy as them. I have got a feeling that they will do well though!
72 Circular Road
313 Orchard Road