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Sep 18, 2011 06:28 PM

Kyoto Sushi Recommendations

I'll be spending a week in Kyoto in early October and am looking for recommendations for a memorable sushi meal for a non Japanese speaker. I have done some of the Tokyo restaurants recommended on these boards (Saito, Daisan Harumi) and am looking for something of similar quality in Tokyo. Appreciate any recommendations.

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  1. If you'll consider going to Osaka for sushi I can give you some recommendations for outstanding places there.

    Kyoto isn't somewhere I'd search out sushi. If I were to try and find some I'd hunt out saba-zushi which has a reasonably long tradition in Kyoto. DIane Durston (who wrote the wonderful "Old Kyoto") recommends Izujuu, a soba ya established in 1892 which specialises in saba-zushi. Be warned, it is the daddy to modern sushi but they have other kinds there also if this venerable old style isn't to your taste.

    8 Replies
    1. re: MoGa

      Thanks. Not going to have a chance to make it to Osaka this time around. Is there anything in Kyoto that would be a good (if not incredible) sushi option? Also, since you seem to know Kyoto pretty well, do you have any other recommendations on not-to-miss meals there?

      Thanks again!

      1. re: guojie

        Ugh, just lost the lengthy reply I made

        here's the jist of it:
        Komameya for yuba

        Hyotei for kaiseki

        Yaoya no Nikai - for the wonderful local vegetable produce

        For gifts, the Ujicha Shoro from Koyama en are beyond sublime
        The matcha ones are wonderful, but it's the hojicha ones that I still drool about - they both make the Pierre Herme matcha macarons taste almost unpleasant in comparison

        - And are you sure about Osaka? the trip from Kyoto to Osaka is like travelling from one side of Tokyo to the other

      2. re: MoGa

        Sorry - there was a typo in one of my previous posts. Izujuu isn't a soba shop but a sushi shop. You can get other kinds of sushi there. lists two other places for sushi in central Kyoto

        I wouldn't expect any of them to reach the heights you've experienced in Tokyo or could experience in Osaka.

        1. re: MoGa

          I was really disappointed with Izujuu. As one of my Japanese observed, 'Why would you go inland for sushi?'

          1. re: kersizm

            Kersizm - Did you have saba zushi at Izujuu or did you stick to the fresher tasting kinds?

          2. re: MoGa

            Well I'd say all three of those are good value for money, and accessible to visitors, but definitely not in the upper echelons of the sushi world. For something a bit more upscale it might be worth checking out the Japanese restaurants in Kyoto's top-class hotels.

          3. re: MoGa

            Hello! Not sure if you still check this but, and I happen to be going to Oasaka in a few days and was wondering if you could share those recommendations? :)
            Much appreciated!

          4. For a memorable meal the two star Michelin Sushi Matsumoto, in Gion, might be a good option. The lunch courses start from ¥8,000, with dinner starting at around ¥15,000. Your hotel may be able to secure a booking for you.

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