4 Hidden Food Gems in Kyoto All Gastronomes Will Love

Once the capital of Japan for over a millennium, Kyoto is the land to seek if you’re looking to immerse yourself in the beauty of Japanese tradition and culture. The city may have retained most of its historical charm, but Kyoto is not always about Shinto shrines or Buddhist temples. Hidden behind all that zen and architecture, is a culture of food that that isn’t your typical sushi or ramen fare. Here, KKday brings you 4 underrated food gems in Kyoto, that all foodies are bound to fall head over heels in love with.

1. Cafe Rhineback

Craving for some pancakes in Kyoto? Have your pancakes the New York way with Cafe Rhineback. The pancake house prides itself for its fluffy cakes highly raved about by Japanese magazines.

Start your day right and pop by in the morning for their breakfast menu but hurry as the pancakes are only available till 10am!

692 Ishiyakushi-cho, Omiya-dori Nakadachiuri-agaru, Kamigyo-ku, Kyoto

Operating Hours:
8am – 5pm (Closed on Mon and Tues)

2. Miki Keiran


Photo Credits: Flickr / Howard Yu

Doesn’t matter if you’re a local or tourist, Nishiki Market is the district to go for the best traditional Japanese food in the city. Dashimaki, a rolled omelette consisting of a frothy egg broth and light dashi stock, is a Kyoto specialty loved by all.

Photo Credits: Flickr / Untitled_Folder


To get your hands on the most authentic of these golden rolls, head over to Miki Keiran. The shop sells Dashimaki that are soft and always freshly made; we bet just one will have you begging for more.

182 Higashi Uoya-Cho, Nishikikoji-dori Tominokoji-nishi-iru, Nakagyo-ku, Kyoto

Operating Hours:
9am – 6pm

3. Nakamura Tokichi Honten


Photo Credits: Flickr / Jin Kemoole

How can matcha not come to mind when we’re talking about Kyoto? Nakamura Tokichi Honten is the closest to heaven that green tea lovers can get. Nestled away in an alley, this cafe serves superb Matcha Anmitsu, a Japanese jelly dessert topped with chewy dango, azuki red beans, as well as ice cream. Yum.

If you’re looking for a unique experience, visit Nakamura Tokichi‘s headquarter located at Uji. The outlet offers tea-grinding workshops that involve guests making their own matcha with a millstone. There’s no better way to immerse yourself in the Japanese culture than this.

10 Uji Ichiban, Uji City, Kyoto (Main Branch)

Operating Hours:

  • Tea Shop: 10am – 6pm (Closed on Weekends)
  • Cafe: 11am – 6pm (Closed on Weekends)

5-1 Ujirenge, Uji City, Kyoto

Operating Hours:

  • Tea Shop: 10.30am – 5pm (Weekdays)
    10.30am – 5.30pm (Weekends & Public Holidays)
  • Cafe: 10.30am – 5pm (Weekdays)
    10.30am – 5.30pm (Weekends & Public Holidays)

Suvaco JR Kyoto Isetan, 2nd & 3rd storey

Operating Hours:

  • Kyoto Station Store
    Tea Shop: 11am – 9.15pm
    Cafe: 11am – 10pm

  • Kyoto Station Store NEXT
    11am – 10pm

4. Umenohana

If you have a love affair with tofu, then Umenohana may just be the Utopia for you. Named after plum blossoms the restaurant holds an array of incredible tofu dishes guaranteed to placate your soy-hungry tastebuds. Best known for its tofu kaiseki cuisine, there’s no better place to fix your tofu obsession than with Umenohana.

West 18 Building. B1F, Kita-Higashi-kado, Rokkaku, Karasuma-dori, Nakagyo-ku, Kyoto

Operating Hours:

  • 11am – 4pm (Lunch)
  • 5pm – 9pm (Dinner)
Thought Kyoto was only meant for sightseeing? Think again. The ancient capital of Japan is more than the fancy monuments and wooden houses it houses. Explore beyond and you’ll find yourself in an exclusive culture of Japanese food you won’t forget anytime soon.
For more travel guides of Japan: