Considering I’m on a diet, I seem to have eaten out quite a lot recently. Not quite on the diet plan, but it is teaching me to take things easy. I am missing the treat myself to 3 courses on a night out though.
Recently our team at work decided to have a bit of a belated lunch out, meaning working out where we could go, eat and leave within a lunch break with a bit of leeway. We wanted to try somewhere different and decided that we’d try the newish japanese restaurant, Zushi.
My experience of japanese food is fairly limited – years ago in a little restaurant in Hollywell Street in Oxford, and then in a huge ‘cook in front of you’ place in Birmingham. I’m not a sushi fan, but I’d seen a few items on the menu that I fancied trying.
Zushi is in Banbury’s old town which is a main street with some lovely independent shops, restaurants and pubs on. Like you’d expect it’s decorated in a calming way despite the dark wood, black and red décor, but it works at lunch time, as well as I’d expect it to at night.
There were a few other tables eating the lunchtime we went, including one with a baby, so it’s suitable for taking families of all ages. And it meant that there was enough of a buzz to not feel empty, unlike some places you go to at lunchtimes.
The lunch menu includes the a la carte choices, but there’s also a lunch menu of bento boxes which come with miso soup. I wasn’t sure on the size of these, but they turned out to be generous and for £8.50 were a good price if you’re treating yourself to a good lunch. On the main menu, there’s different types of sushi, curry dishes and noodles ranging from a couple of £ for appetisers, through to £8-£12 for a main dish.
We started with a bowl of edamame to share, sprinkled liberally with salt. I’ve never had edamame hot before, but they were delicious, and a healthy start to the meal.
I’d decided on teriyaki chicken and mixed vegetables from the main menu after seeing it on the menu a while back and deciding in advance that’s what I wanted. It didn’t disappoint – it was a little salty (I rarely put salt in any of my cooking), but delicious. I’d have liked more veg with it, because really there was only a few shoots underneath the chicken. But a protein meal worked for me and was just the right size.
I think for people not used to eating in japanese restaurants (and it’s a comment of any restaurant where rice, naan, veg etc may be separate to the main dishes), they should either state on the menus that accompaniments are ordered separately. Or mention it when handing out the menus. Although that would make it a pricy lunch if you’re adding on another couple of pounds for rice.
We got to eat with chopsticks too which I love to practice, although you could ask for standard cutlery.
The customer service was good – they made us feel welcome. We didn’t wait long for our food, and were well attended without the waitresses hovering over us too much.
For a quick lunch break it’s convenient, quick if you’re in a hurry and it’s nice to eat somewhere slightly different to the cafes and pubs we quite often go to. I’m sure we’ll be back to Zushi soon.
Have you eaten much japanese food? What would you recommend?