Interview with Yo Sushi Cheltenham's Georgeta Oancea

SoGlos speaks to YO! Sushi Cheltenham's chef Georgeta Oancea about the restaurant's diverse menu, the dish that every diner should try, and her guilty pleasure.

SoGlos speaks to YO! Sushi Cheltenham’s chef Georgeta Oancea to uncover the Japanese eatery’s best offerings, its exotic influences, and the impressive range of healthy dishes.

Whether you’re a seasoned sushi fan or love chicken katsu curries, prepare to find a dish to suit your tastes, with Georgeta revealing the restaurant’s diverse range of hot and cold dishes that span warming ramen to spicy pepper squid.

Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and when you moved to Gloucestershire?

I am originally from Romania and moved to Gloucestershire about five years ago. I started working at YO! Sushi when it opened a restaurant in Cheltenham three years ago.

Can you tell us a little bit about your culinary background?

A few years ago I started preparing Turkish cuisine and was then hired by the head chef of YO! Sushi, who saw a passion and hunger in me that he wanted in his kitchen.

How is the food prepared at YO! Sushi?

We have fresh deliveries daily and all the sushi is prepared in front of the diners. There is also an extensive hot food selection that serves both wok dishes and tempura dishes, alongside everything else.

For those who don’t know much about YO! Sushi, can you explain the concept?

Our most talked about point is our Kaiten Belt, a conveyor belt that snakes around the restaurant bringing cold dishes, and hot dishes during peak time, so you can choose plates for yourself.

This helps diners to pop in during their lunch breaks and have a fast healthy lunch, while the more curious diners can take their time and try some new dishes that might be out of their normal comfort zone.

Fast, healthy and fun is the mantra here at Cheltenham’s YO! Sushi.

Can you tell us a little more about the restaurant’s beyond the ‘sushi’ menu?

Aside from sushi, the menu also caters for fans of Japanese and Asian cuisine, with highlights such as udon and ramen, big chunky soups with noodles or rice in them, which are a meal in themselves, and full of flavour.

We are also famed for our katsu and curries, particularly the tofu katsu curry, which has won vegetarian dish of the year.

These are just a few examples from the menu, as YO! Sushi has 100 dishes for everyone to sample, so you should never be bored trying something new!

A post shared by YO! Sushi UK (@yosushi) on

What sort of dishes can diners expect to try?

Our yakisoba noodles and chahan rice dishes are a great way to start, and then you can pick a bit of what you fancy from the belt as the food travels by.

Is there one dish that’s most popular?

Spicy pepper squid wins every time.

What would be your top dish recommendation?

Definitely the salmon selection, there are three different ways that our fresh salmon can be prepared, all offering a slightly different taste sensation.

What dish would you recommend for people who are wary of sushi or raw fish?

That’s easy – udon and ramen dishes. They’re a meal in themselves and diners can just sit and soak up the vibe in the restaurant, enjoying the vibrant atmosphere.

A post shared by YO! Sushi UK (@yosushi) on

What’s your favourite dish?

I think you mean my guilty secret! It would be our chocolate mochi, which are sweet rice balls with a rich chocolate ganache centre. They’re irresistible to me.

Do you think there’s a demand for healthy food at restaurants?

As there’s a current trend with health bloggers, vloggers and so on, the next generation is so used to healthy being a popular choice that naturally all restaurants need to embrace it as we do.

YO! Sushi has the advantage of using products with a great health back-story. But, we also embrace vegetarians, vegans and we take allergens very seriously, offering menus and trained staff to help anyone who is unsure.

What do you get up to when you’re not in the kitchen?

Going out to restaurants and trying any new additions to Cheltenham… and of course, any new chocolate desserts they may have. All in the name of research!

What are some of your favourite ingredients, and why?

Sorry to sound boring, but I think by now you know I’m going to say chocolate!

Do you have any tips for sushi fans hoping to create their own dishes at home?

Come and try our sushi schools, they’re so popular that they get booked up three months in advance! You can sign up to have the available dates sent to you via email, by contacting, with the heading ‘FAO sushi school.’

Do you have any special events coming up, that you think SoGlos readers should know about?

We’re going to be at the Cheltenham Food Festival again this year, and will be serving our favourite hot and cold dishes from our portable Kaiten Belt, in addition to hosting some mini sushi schools and demonstrations.

I hope that everyone who reads this will come and say hello, and ask me any questions – I would be pleased to help!

For more information visit directly.

By Kathryn Godfrey

© SoGlos
Tuesday 21 February 2017

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