Friday, April 12, 2013

Kamakura Weekend

My wife and I recently enjoyed a wonderful getaway weekend in Kamakura, timing it perfectly with the sakura in full bloom.  But along with the cherry blossoms, we indulged ourselves in the local goodies that Kamakura has to offer. 
Our first find was at Café Campanella.  Please click on the restaurant name for a detailed post.
Later, while strolling down one of the main touristy avenues (click HERE for a map), I noticed a crowd of people congregating at a little hole-in-the-wall croquette shop.  I believe the name of the shop is 鳥小屋, which fries up an assortment of breaded goodness, each for only 200 yen:  meat, purple sweet potato, black sesame,  chocolate, maccha,  yuzu, and ume-shiso.

Crispy goodness!

I’ve never really been a fan of croquettes, but apparently Kamakura croquettes are a local specialty so I decided to try one, and I’m sure glad I did!  
I chose the meat croquette and found it to be delightful!  Fried to crispy perfection, the breaded coating crunchy and flaky, with the meat and potato minced filling seasoned nicely, yet surprisingly, not very greasy.  I would’ve loved to try another one but I decided to save room for any other specialties I would run into.  Click on the name of the restaurant for more information about it:  鳥小屋.


My next discovery was just down the street (click MAP) at 腸詰屋, or Schinken & Wurst Hot Dog Bar.  I’m really not sure what the name of the place is, but it seems to be quite popular as there were two other locations that I saw in my short time in Kamakura.  Schinken & Wurst grills up five different varieties of sausages (plain, chorizo, curry, parsley, and paprika & herbs).   Each cost 350 yen for a sausage sans bun, but if you’d prefer it with a bun it’s 400 yen.  I only wanted the protein and not the carbs so I opted for a bunless plain link.

Notice the little piggies?

At first glance, it seemed as if the sausage had barely been near the fire, as there were hardly any grill marks on it.  But upon first bite I realized that it was hotter than it appeared, and the snap of the outer casing of the sausage was quite nice.  Who likes a limp, cold sausage?  I don’t know if it was worth 350 yen, but it was a mighty tasty wiener!  For more info, please click on the name:  腸詰屋. And just to confirm its tastiness, I went the next day to another of its locations HERE.  It proved to be just as delicious as its sister location.

Wonderful Wiener!

Another nice surprise was the apple pie at Little Mermaid (click name for information).  Tart Jonathan apples, butter and caramel mixed with an almond cream baked inside a wonderful crispy and flaky crust for only 280 yen.  This provided ample nourishment as we were trekking from temple to temple.

Little Mermaid Apple Pie

While on our return trip from Kenchōji Temple, we treated ourselves to some of the best vanilla soft cream I’ve licked in Japan at いも吉館.  Only three flavors are available at this ice cream joint, vanilla, purple sweet potato, and mixed, and the cost is 300 yen.  But after the many trails behind Kenchōji Temple, this luscious soft cream was a welcome treat.  Click HERE for a map.

おばあさん sneaking out with her ice cream.

Velvety Smooth!

We ate a satisfactory bacon and egg breakfast at 上島珈琲店This chain restaurant also has a Sendai location on Higashi-nibancho dori near Chuo-dori.  The buttered toast was quite nice, with the bread being soft and fluffy.  However, the egg was lacking salt and pepper, and I seemed to throw the staff into a panic when I asked for some salt and pepper.  Click on the name of the restaurant above for the Kamakura location.  

Good, but needs salt & pepper.

I saved the best for last, as our greatest discovery was Burosso in Ofuna.  Burosso deserved its own posting so please click on the name to link to that page.
We had a wonderful time savoring the sights and flavors of Kamakura and its surroundings.  Although cherry blossom season may be over by now, the great tastes still remain.

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