480 Kiyoi, Gionshimogawara-dori, Higashiyama-ku, Kyoto

Phone: 075-561-0328

Kyoto is famous for its kaiseki, even though it can get extremely pricey, there are places that offer kaiseki lunches that do not cost an arm and a leg (dinner is about $150 per person). So during our 2005 trip to Kyoto, we went to have lunch at Minoko, a cha-kaiseki restaurant that specializes in kaiseki meal after a tea ceremony.

The restaurant look like a typical Kyoto traditional house from the outside. We were greeted by a few kimono wearing waitresses once we got inside. Even though they did not speak much English, they communicated through calculator, letting us know what to expect for lunch. After knowing that we are ok (with the price), we were brought to a small private tataki dining room with a view of a Japanese garden. There was a small door on the side of the room where our waitress enters with our food. We were first served with Matcha, which is powdered green tea leaves that are whisked into a bowl of delicious, bubbly looking green tea. After that, we had a multi course of wonderfully prepared and delicate dishes such as grilled fish, sashimi, boiled fish, tempura, yuba in light broth etc. The dishes were all very light, delicate and extremely fresh. It was one of the best meal we have had.

Our private dining room at Minoko

Matcha and some homemade Minoko sweets

Our waitress entering from the small door


Yuba in light broth

Broiled seasonal fish

Assorted Tempura

finished the course with some fresh fruits

Our waitress at took a great picture of us outside of Minoko


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