Kiln

Kiln takes its name from the oven at the center of its open kitchen, which is surrounded by communal wooden slabs that seat around 10 diners. The ambience and decor is pared-back (design company 1616/Arita is responsible for renovating the building and making the tableware) ...

Gion Sasaki

On the wall at Gion Sasaki there are two signs depicting mobile phones with lines through them. Bringing your phone with you is allowed, but speaking on it is a no-no. When I visited for lunch, an Asian tourist dining on his own nearby ...

Ogawa

The Kyoto neighborhood of Gion is small but complicated. Wedged between the hills of Higashiyama and the Kamo River, it contains some of Japan's most picturesque and well-trodden streets, but there's also a warren of back-alleys and lanes with bright lights and seedy goings-on. Ogawa, ...

Ogawa Coffee

For a small city, Kyoto is big on coffee. As with every city in Japan, the current "third-wave" coffee boom has brought more choice and quality when it comes to cafes and beans. This is undeniably good news for coffee drinkers. Ogawa Coffee and ...

Rakushin

What does austerity look and feel like? Well, it depends on whom you ask. I imagine for Greeks it’s a sort of endless despair engendering cynicism, but here in Japan, austerity — or, rather, restraint — can engender a sense of luxury, subtlety and ...

Aji Fukushima

I still find it amusing that so many chefs at high-end Japanese restaurants wear neckties beneath their white chef uniforms. It seems at odds with the temperature and temperament of a kitchen, but I suppose it's no more amusing or wondrous than the traditional ...

Ramen Tsurumusha

There are two ramen shops well worth visiting in the western outskirts of Kyoto. Distance-wise, they're only a five-minute walk apart, but judging by most other measures they are polar opposites. At Shiogensui, the salty ramen is served by overly polite staff who incessantly shouting ...

58 Diner

In recent times, Japan has offered up a noteworthy list of burgers, with the newest additions being Burger King's "Kuro Burger," followed by a similar version at McDonald's (unsurprising given that one thing you could never accuse either company of is true originality). Here's ...

Hyotei

Spring is here, and Kyoto is calling us. The old capital is ablaze with blossom, fresh foliage and the exhilaration that winter is over. This is a magical time of year — not just for sightseeing, but for eating out, too, with all the ...

Gion Nishikawa

Spring is here, and Kyoto is calling us. The old capital is ablaze with blossom, fresh foliage and the exhilaration that winter is over. This is a magical time of year — not just for sightseeing, but for eating out, too, with all the ...