A little while ago I took a trip back to my home town. I travelled from London to the old capital of ancient England, Winchester. The city was first made a capital by King Alfred in 871. It remained important until the 12-13th century, when London became the capital. However, it remains beautiful and historic, with plenty to see and do. In fact, recently it was voted the best place to live in Britain.
I was lucky enough to grow up nearby, and go to school in the city. I always enjoy popping back for a weekend and wandering down the sleepy high street. The featured photo was taken in the Cathedral grounds a few summers ago. It’s shows one of a few bronze monuments to the soldiers of WWI.
Anyway, back to our main topic of interest before I get too distracted by history. A short side note. If you do visit Winchester be sure to see the following:
- The Westgate
- The Great Hall complete with The Round Table
- St Catherine’s Hill
- Winchester College
- Jane Austins’ old house
- The high street
- King Alfred’s statue
- Winchester Cathedral and grounds
Ok. Now I’m done. I’m sure the tourism board will thank me for my shameless plug.
Rather than eat in a Japanese restaurant and not tell you about it, I thought I’d find a tenuous link to my blog’s title ‘Capital of the Rising Sun’; I think it’s allowed. My boyfriend and I have had a £50 voucher for this restaurant for well over a year. So it was about time that we found ourselves in Kyoto Kitchen.
On previous visits here we found that the best dishes are the starters and sushi. The mains are average and a little pricey. So with our voucher we decided to have a selection of small dishes. This included: Chicken Gyoza (£6.95), Vegatable Gyoza (£5.95), Torikara Age (£6.95), Ebi Tempura (£8.50), Ika No Pirikara Age (£6.95), Salmon Avocado roll (£7.95), and the Futo California roll (£11.95).
Both the varieties of gyoza were delicious, served with a smoky mirin based sauce. The Torikara Age (Fried Chicken with sweet chilli sauce) was succulent and moreish. It was probably my favourite starter.
Ebi Tempura (lightly battered king prawns) is a bit of classic. This dish had large, juicy, perfectly good prawns. Ika No Pirikara Age (Spicy deep fried squid) came as a large portion but unfortunately lacked flavour. I would have preferred larger pieces of squid with more seasoning.
The sushi was nicely presented. The Futo California roll which is filled with cucumber, avacado and crab was a little dry. However the salmon roll was very tasty. Top tip with sushi. Don’t forget to add the wasabi paste to your soy sauce. You can add as little or as much as you like to get the spice just right.
Until reasonably recently, I used to put the slices of ginger on top of my sushi and eat it all together. However, I have been informed that you should eat the ginger on its own between pieces. This acts as a palette cleanser.
I enjoyed my meal with a slightly unique gin and tonic. The gin used was Scotish made ‘Jinzu’. It is a British gin with Japanese citrus yuzu and cherry blossom. It was severed with a slice of apple and fever tree tonic, and was very refreshing. I will be on the lookout for a bottle myself.
All in all the meal was pleasant, and the atmosphere calm and welcoming. We look forward to going back.