Kyoto Shijo (Karasuma, Kawaramachi)
restaurant, bar and cafe listings
Japanese: creative cuisine at Giro Giro
Kaiseki: Roan Kikunoi, Kinmata
Vegetables: Yaoya no Nikai, Harvest, Kamo
Cafe: Aux Bacchanales
Drinks: Craft beers at Bungalow
Budget: Yak & Yeti (Nepalese)
Karasuma-dori and west
Bungalow - Beer bar [ Open 3pm-midnight. Closed Tuesdays. ]
One of the better places for craft beer in Kyoto (there isn't much competition), Bunglaow has ten taps devoted to Japanese craft breweries as well as a good menu of French and European bistro fare. ...
Kinobu - Kyo-ryori [ Open 11:30am-2:30, 5-9:30pm daily. ]
If you want French wine with your kaiseki, this is the place - most bottles are under Y6000, although they have a number of Bordeaux wines in the Y40,000 range for big spenders. Besides kaiseki and...
Zezekan Pocchiri - Chinese [ Open 11:30am-2, 5-10pm (LO) daily. ]
This converted Taisho-era storehouse is owned by an antiques dealer, and he's stocked the huge interior with lovely Asian-style furnishings. Several of the dining areas look out onto the courtyard...
Aux Bacchanales - Cafe [ Open 11am-11pm daily. ]
Another French bistro-cafe arrives in Kyoto: this one is a branch of the excellent Tokyo-based chain, known for their authentic French style and well-prepared food. The Y1000 lunches are a good...
Hub (Cocon Karasuma) - Beer bar [ Open noon-11:45pm (LO) daily. ]
British beers, darts and foosball in this national chain of pubs; no English menu though.
Natural Kitchen Koji - Izakaya [ Open 11am-10pm (LO) daily. ]
This prefab-style izakaya-cafe offers a lot of healthy-looking dishes (vegetable chips, sesame tofu) along with more ordinary izakaya fare (raw horsemeat, garlic fried potatoes). Drinks include...
Old Hong Kong - Chinese [ Open 11:30am-3, 5-9pm (LO) daily. ]
A branch of a popular Kobe Cantonese restaurant, Old HK is known for their impressive dim sum lunches (Y3400 for all you can eat, with a 90-minute limit) - they even have dumpling trolleys making the...
Shijo between Karasuma and Kawaramachi
Katsukura Higashi-Notoin - Tonkatsu [ Open 11am-9:30pm (LO) daily. ]
One of the best of the tonkatsu chains, Kyoto-based Katsukura offers nice side dishes like yuba (tofu-skin) croquettes and excellent Kyoto-style pickles. And they're open all afternoon if you need a...
Kamo - Japanese [ Open 7-10, 11am-3, 5-10pm (LO) daily. ]
A specialist in Kyoto vegetables, Kamo offers a nice vegetable-centered buffet for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Breakfast is Y490, lunch is Y880 (60-minute limit), and dinner is Y1350 (80-minute...
Daimaru - Retail [ Open 10am-8pm daily. ]
Daimaru's food floor is huge, with a good selection of prepared foods from famous restaurants as well as imported items.
Omotesando Koffee - Coffee shop [ Open 11am-8pm daily. ]
This small espresso stand, wedged into the front corner of a United Arrows clothing boutique, is a branch of a famous Aoyama espresso bar with an international cult following. Espresso runs Y250,...
Kinmata - Kaiseki [ Open 7:30-9am, noon-1, 5:30-7:30pm. Closed Wednesdays. ]
This 200-year-old ryokan is now known mainly as a restaurant, with excellent seafood-centric kaiseki service. Small private tatami rooms look out onto tiny courtyards or miniature gardens, and...
Yak & Yeti - Nepalese [ Open 11:30am-2:30, 5-10pm. Closed Mondays. ]
Inexpensive and tasty Nepalese curries and Indian tandoori dishes are the specialties at this charming little shop. The dining room has been expanded, but unfortunately it can get smoky.
Ashoka - Indian [ Open 11:30am-2:30, 5-9pm. Closed 3rd Wed. ]
Kyoto's long-established Indian-food pioneer still turns out reliable curries in a smartly decorated dining room. Full-course dinners start at Y3000, although a la carte choices can be more...
Tagoto - Japanese [ Open 11:30am-3, 4:30-9pm daily. ]
Although it's just steps away from the busy Shijo-Kawaramachi intersection, Tagoto is hidden away behind a narrow entrance and a long, lantern-lit passageway. The food menu includes budget-friendly...
Din Tai Fung - Dim sum [ Open 10:30am-8pm. Closed Tuesdays. ]
This department-store nook specializes in shoronpo - authentic Taipei-style dumplings injected with a hot broth that fills your mouth with delicious flavors as it simultaneously scalds your tongue.
Sweet Dynasty - Chinese [ Open 10am-8:30pm (LO). Closed Tuesdays. ]
The Hong Kong-based tea shop offers a huge selection of Chinese desserts, plus dim sum and a few a la carte dishes. Desserts are also ready to take out.
Hisago Sushi - Sushi [ Open 9:30am-9pm (LO) daily. ]
Good, moderately priced Kansai-style sushi - there's a small counter on the ground level but plenty of additional table seating upstairs. Take-away is also available.
Ringer Hut - Japanese regional [ Open 11am-4am daily. ]
Tasty Nagasaki-style champon and sara-udon noodles are served well into the wee hours at this late-night budget noodle shop.
Jajouka - Middle Eastern [ Open noon-2, 6-10pm (LO) daily. ]
Tajines, couscous, and other Moroccan and Moroccan-French dishes are the draw at Jajouka. They also stock several Belgian and other European beers. Budget around Y5000 at dinnertime.
Nishikikoji between Karasuma and Teramachi
Ippudo - Ramen [ Open 11am-2am daily. ]
Ippudo's Hakata-style ramen is known for its rich pork-based broth and thin, slightly chewy noodles. There are graters and garlic cloves on the counter if you're so inclined.
Komameya - Tofu [ Open 11:30am-2, 5:30-11pm. Closed second Wednesday. ]
Fresh Kyoto yuba (tofu skin) is the focal point of the menu here, with unusual dishes like yuba and roast duck carpaccio and yuba dumpling pizza. The dining room is attractively appointed in...
Ootoya (Nishiki-koji) - Japanese [ Open 11am-9:30pm daily. ]
Ootoya offers very budget-friendly teishoku meals that include interesting side dishes and a good helping of vegetables. Set meals are generally priced at under Y1000.
Divo Diva - Italian [ Open 11:30am-2, 6-10pm. Closed Wednesdays. ]
Authentic Italian fare with a Japanese sensibility; budget Y8,000 to Y10,000 for dinner. Lunch starts at Y1600.
Mochitsukiya - Japanese [ Open 11am-5:30pm daily. ]
This quaint little shop inside Nishiki Market serves traditional Japanese sweets with green tea, and they also prepare some rather novel variations on grilled mochi - peanut butter, mentaiko and...
Yaoya no Nikai - Kyo-ryori [ Open 11am until they run out daily. ]
On the ground floor is a top-class produce shop with picture-perfect Kyoto vegetables, while upstairs they've set aside a tiny room for lunch. There's only one choice - a prix-fixe menu of small...
Iyomata - Sushi [ Open 9am-6:30pm (LO). Closed Wednesdays. ]
This modest, long-established shop serves Nishiki market shoppers with traditional Kyoto-style sushi including saba-zushi (mackerel pressed onto a bed of rice and sliced into rectangular slabs).
Karikari Hakase - Takoyaki [ Open 11am-7pm. Closed Sundays. ]
The takoyaki at this Nishiki Market stand gets high marks from local Kyoto connoisseurs. Six pieces of jumbo takoyaki will set you back Y180; other options include takoyaki with cheese, spring...
Aritsugu - Retail [ Open 9am-5:30pm daily. ]
A fantastic selection of chef's knives and cleavers, cooking pans, bamboo steamers, and more esoteric cookingware can be found at this 400-year-old retail shop.
Nishiki Market - Attraction [ ]
Hundreds of specialized food shops line this kilometer-long covered market street running through the heart of central Kyoto.
Wan Nyan Chu 2 - Cat cafe [ Open noon-9pm daily. ]
This second branch of Kyoto's most popular cat cafe has a quieter, more relaxed atmosphere than the main shop, with plenty of comfortable nooks and crannies for human visitors as well as the twenty...
Kushiya Monogatari - Kushiage [ Open 4-11pm daily. ]
This popular shop lets you cook your own kushiage skewers in a deep-fryer right at your table. It's all you can eat, including various side dishes and a big variety of skewered tidbits. Y2625 per...
East of Kawaramachi
Hageten - Tempura [ Open 11am-9pm daily. ]
Good-quality tempura at modest prices in a convenient department-store setting. Budget around Y2000-2500 for dinner.
Misono - Teppanyaki [ Open 11:30am-2:30, 5-9:30pm (LO). Closed Tuesdays. ]
The "originator of teppanyaki" is Misono's claim, and they've certainly been around long enough, serving Kobe and other local beef steaks since the 1940s. The decor and prices are more down-to-earth...
Ichiyoken - Yoshoku [ Open 5-10pm (LO). Closed Thursdays. ]
This charmingly old-fashioned shop serves state-of-the-art Western dishes circa 1922, when they first opened their doors - pork chops, grilled chicken, shrimp croquettes, potato salad and the like. ...
Roan Kikunoi - Kaiseki [ Open noon-1:30, 5-8:30pm (LO). Closed Wednesdays. ]
Third-generation kaiseki chef Yoshihiro Murata takes a fresh approach to the cuisine, drawing on French and other European influences and using some non-traditional ingredients (like Japanese pears...
Girogiro Hitoshina - Japanese [ Open 5:30-11pm. Closed Sundays. ]
We're not sure whether to call it casual modern kaiseki or creative Kyoto cuisine, but the food here is exquisite in both flavor and presentation. The nine-course menu follows a traditional kaiseki...
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