Monday, January 12, 2015

My best tempura experience to date

At a reputable luxury hotel, it is almost guaranteed that the food will be enjoyable.  The setting, the service, and the quality of food are all top notch.  The Ritz Carlton Kyoto's dining selection is no different.

Below the lobby, the hotel's Japanese restaurant, Mizuki, features 4 kinds of Japanese specialty cuisines: kaiseki, sushi, teppan, and tempura.  You can sit at eat specialized station or in the main dining area to eat a little of everything.

When in Japan and there's a beautiful tempura bar, you must go there.  At these bars, each piece is fried at your eating pace.  I thought my tempura experience in Tokyo was amazing, and this just brought up the bar.  Mizuki's tempura has been my best experience to date.

The seafood and vegetables were all local and seasonal.  The chef, who is a humble genius at the fryer and with his tempura artistry, watches as you dine and eat.  He paces your next bites, fries them according to your pace, and explains how each bite will be best enhanced with sauce, lemon, or salt.  The batter was perfection and paper thin while perfectly fried inside.  So amazing.

Steps down to the Japanese restaurant

Tempura bar


Chef preparing our tempura platter

Seasonal selections

Starting with tofu and salmon roe

Chef frying our meal.  One bite at a time.

Shrimp head

Corn and shrimp

White fish

Perfectly battered and cooked

Lotus root

Gingko nuts

Mushrooms wrapped in white fish

Seasonal mushrooms

White fish wrapped in shiso leaves

Hokkaido Camembert cheese and sweet potato

Smooth, silky and perfectly lightly battered

Attention to detail.  Christofle chopsticks

Rice, soup, and pickles to close the meal

Matcha and sakura ice cream

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