It is a quaint little town, famous for its green tea production. In fact, we were so spoiled of so much dish and snacks made of matcha and green tea (quite a few did not make it to this blog, as we were too engrossed in the whole experience that we forgot to take pictures).
Uji would undoubtedly be a beautiful sight, if not for the rain that makes everything kinda gloomy and the river running brown water.
The famous Uji River.
This sculpture is Hashi Hime, located at the south entrance of the Uji Bridge:
She is also mentioned several times in the Tales of Genji - a romance novel from the Heian period.
|Manhole of Uji|
Thankfully, all the effort was worth it, because this place is awesome.
〒 611-0013 Kyōto-fu, Uji-shi, Todō, Aramaki
English menu is available. And as always... :
I ordered NishinSoba (JPY 907). Of course in true homage to Uji's specialty, the soba's also infused with matcha. It was very comforting, especially after we were kinda drenched from the rain. The herring added sweetness to the dish.
1/2heart ordered Kayaku Gohan and Mini Anmitsu Set (JPY 1188), and opted zarusoba (cold soba) for his set. The green tea soba is eaten by dipping them into the provided sauce. Again, a very excellent dish - the texture and taste of the perfectly cooked green tea soba.
And how could we not order any dessert? That would be blasphemy. The mini anmitsu from the set above was not enough to satisfy our matcha cravings.
We ordered Yokubari Matcha Parfait (JPY 972). The parfait came with a small tub of matcha powder that we applied generously over and over again.
Hojicha Jely and Matcha cheesecake (JPY 972). Oh my Lord, what can I say... this cheesecake was probably the best cheesecake I have ever eaten. Or perhaps I am just biased because this cake tasted so good with enough green tea flavor kick, and we even added more matcha powder onto it.
Itohkyuemon also sells various tea products which will be worth buying. Wish I have bottomless pit of a stomach so I could sample all of those delicacies... .
After lunch, we walked around more (still raining). The good thing about the rain is that there was hardly anyone in the usual tourist destinations. All the shrines and temples were empty, and most of the time, we had them all for ourselves to enjoy.
The bad thing about the rain is... well... the rain.
We went to the Tale of Genji Museum (admission JPY 500), a museum dedicated to the Tale of Genji romance novel from the Heian period.
Beautiful presentations and dioramas based on the story.
Then walked around some more... .
And we reached Byodoin Temple. Admission costs JPY 600 per person.
Hey... this structure looks familiar...
Ah... the 10 yen coin... .
When it got darker, we tried to look for some place to eat, but a lot of places are actually closed at night, and the ones that open kinda scared me with their advertised price in front of their doors.
The roads to ourselves again...
And so we made an effort (and thank God the rain subsided somewhat) to the north of the Uji bridge again to have dinner.
16 in the Uji, Uji-shi, Kyoto east, 611-0021
This place is awesome. We especially liked how they provided a tub of matcha powder at every table (and alongside the sushi bar), for patrons to help ourselves to make our own matcha tea. There is hot water tap alongside the bar as well, so we can refill as much as we like.
And the matcha is free, people. It's free!!!
Sushi were also great. Especially liked their chawan mushi and unagi nigiri (yeah what else).
|Ika meshi and chawan mushi|
Total damage for dinner: JPY 3870
**-**Our accommodation in Uji is Hanayashiki Ukifune-en, located just by the side of Byodoin River.
Everything about this place is top notch. The service is flawless, the place is beautifully decorated, the location excellent, and the view would have been a killer if not for the rain.
Fare we got was JPY 15200 per night.
There are two public baths, with rotating use for ladies and gentlemen. If you ever had the chance to stay at traditional japanese inns/ryokans, give their public bath a go. Throw your inhibitions out of the window - no one would bat an eye seeing your naked body (well, unless if you made a mistake walking into the opposite assigned bath...)
I only managed to get some pictures of one of the baths - when there were no people using it.
Our room is 'Ayame' (all the rooms are individually named) and is also japanese style. The futons were laid out when we had dinner,
And to close off the blog entry for today: in-house yukata of Ukifune-en.