Sunday, February 27, 2011

London - Little Japan and the Phantom of the Opera

Originally I wanted to go to the Natural History Museum but I didn't expect the incredible queue in front of it. It is half term school holidays in England and obviously everybody took their kids to the Museum. I was told it would take up to 60 minutes to get in and so I decided to do some sightseeing and shopping instead and postponed the museum trip  for the time being.

It was a beautiful day and so I walked towards the Thames and Buckingham Palace (with the London Eye in the background). And this is the so-called cenotaph, a WW I memorial:

After enjoying St. James Park, I returned to Piccadilly Circus

39 Steps is still running...I watched it a couple of years ago with P and C. We enjoyed it a lot.

I also wanted to visit the Japan Centre which moved from Piccadilly Street to Regent Street, just around the corner. My favourite place to have a look for japanese books and magazines. There is now a Mitsukoshi (a Japanese department store) on top of it.

Amatou from Wagashi Maniac also told me about Minamoto Kitchoan, a wagashi shop in London. So it was on my must-see list :)

Wagashi are Japanese sweets or 'sunkissed goodness' as they are called on Minamoto's website, and are traditionally served with green tea. Made from natural ingrediences and with a much lower calorie intake you can indulge without guilt :)
Here some photos of some of their wagashi; first a seasonal one, Sakuranbo, Japanese cherries in a jelly, unfortunately it is jelly made from gelatine, so I couldn't buy those. But they do look pretty.

Of course I couldn't resist and bought a selection :) but you will have to wait till I'm back home to see photos of the wagashi I bought. If you meanwhile want to try your hands on them and make them yourself, you should visit Wagashi Maniac's webpage with loads of recipes and instructions.

For the evening I got tickets for the Phantom of the Opera.

I've loved this musical for long, but never had the oportunity to see it on stage. Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber's music was great, but I already knew this since I have an excellent recording at home. Maybe that was the reason I was a tiny bit disappointed. The character of Christine was brilliant, with very nice voice, but the male leading actors were not really that good or just not at their best on this evening.
The special effects were ridiculous, maybe they should go and watch a performance at the Royal National Theatre to know what can be done on a stage. When the phantom threatened the lovers he threw flashes of light towards them .... they looked like duds of a firework, just some pityful yellow blobs that fell down right where the phantom stood. As Raoul I would have laughed my a... off.

1 comment:

  1. Wie konnte ich das nur verpassen?Habe gerade gestern mich über Deine Erdnuss-sauce amüsiert
    ("like puke", die aber meiner Meinung nach eben wie eine leckere Nusssauce aussieht) ;-)
    Das ist echt total süß von Dir, Torwen, dass Du zu Minamoto hin bist und darüber berichtest! Ist für mich super spannend, und kann es kaum erwarten, bis ich die Wagashi, die Du Dir gekauft hast, zeigst! :-) Danke auch für die Erwähnung und Verlinkung...
    Die Kirschen, sind die echt mit Gelatine??
    Ich habe dieses Wagashi schon mal gemacht, aber mit Kanten(Agar), es ist eigentlich recht einfach.Habe mir schon eine Notiz aufgeschrieben, sobald ich Kirschen bekomme, ein Rezept für Dich einzustellen, damit Du sie probieren kannst.schade, denn die von Minamoto sollen sehr gut sein, und sind berühmt(auch wegen des Aussehens). Hier ist sogar ein Bild von meinem damaligen Versuch: