I am a huge fan of Kyoto Garden Sushi but it is admittedly very pricey. The best thing though is that in the winter time Kyoto pops up with their winter special. And in my honest opinion the two best winter specials belong to Kyoto Garden Sushi and Cheyne’s. Two of my favourite restaurants in Cape Town. Kyoto’s special includes three courses and a glass of wine for R170 and you can catch this until the end of the month (August 2016).
I couldn’t resist but run you through our dinner during their winter special! And I am hoping to squeeze in one more visit this winter!
Here are your options on the perfect winter special menu:
Miso Soup with mushrooms, seaweed and tofu
Warm scallops in their shell
Rice with special fish
Sauteed noodles with prawns
Sauteed West Coast mussels
Black sesame seed ice cream
We opted for the tuna tartare and the warm scallops in their shell. I am normally the biggest fan of the tuna tartare- its creamy, rich and so delicious but with our cold winter evening the warm scallops juuuust won out! The scallops are tender and slightly sweet and smokey. I really haven’t had better scallops than the gems that can be found at Kyoto.
The other day someone complained that they couldn’t find good scallops in Cape Town. Well, sweet soul, delicious scallops can be right here at Kyoto and are included in their winter special!
You often find that the Cape Town winter special restaurants cheap out and take the best dishes off the menu – at Kyoto they use their winter special to showcase their best dishes and entice you into coming back to try more!
For round two the sweetheart opted for the sauteed West Coast mussels – these were delicious and had a wonderful fresh sea flavour. These are mussels as fresh as they come and true to their flavour.
I opted for my ultimate comfort food dish at Kyoto: rice with special fish. Explaining this dish does it absolutely no justice. It is a creamy rice based dish topped with perfect pieces of fish, bok choy and spring onions. I know that sounds like something you can whip up at home but you’re going to have to trust me here. The rice is closer to a creamy risotto than a rice dish, the fish is impossible light and tender and the crunchy greens work to freshen it all up into one delicious mouthful!
The sneaky thing about the Kyoto winter special is that it is such a good deal you start looking around for what else is on the menu. At this point it is pure gluttony as the three course menu is more than filling! We decided to try out the fresh crayfish miso with dainty crayfish nigiri. The miso was delicious and light – you just keep wanting to slurp down one more spoonful! And we had never tried crayfish sushi before – finding it rich and tender and a new favourite. If you’re a seafood lover this is definitely an exciting dish to try!
Other must tries if you’re looking to explore beyond the winter special menu include their amazing tempura (try the scallops), wagyu beef or a selection of their beautiful sushi – the toro nigiri being my favourite!
The dessert option is normally the spectacular black sesame seed ice cream. Unfortunately they were out of stock for the evening but offered an alternative from the full dessert menu. I have tried almost all of their dessert – with the black sesame seed ice cream and the cherry blossom ice cream being my favourite – and couldn’t resist trying the last elusive dessert on my list! I tried the toasted tofu with ginger ice cream. I am a huge fan of tofu – but sadly this one did not work for me. However the ginger ice cream is pure perfection and I hope to see that used on the menu possibly with a different pairing.
All in all we had a luxury dinner at only R170 with a big glass of wine! You always win when visiting Kyoto Garden Sushi – and the winter special just makes it so much better!
(Here’s a quick parting image of the black sesame ice cream which is the delightful dessert you can expect on the winter special menu. This packs an umami punch with a sweet finish all in one mouthful.)
- Location: 11 Kloof Nek Road, Gardens
- Opening times: Monday to Saturday 5:30pm til 11pm
- Contact details: 021 422 2001
Note: We enjoyed dinner as guest of Kyoto Garden Sushi however all photographs and opinions are my own.