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[Kyoto 京都] Oimatsu 老松

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Oimatsu 老松

Add: Tenryui-ji, Sagano, Kyoto
Tel: 075-881-9033
Hours: 9am-5pm
Website: www.oimatu.co.jp
Price: 700 yen+
Visited: Aug 2016

The more than hundred-year-old Oimatsu used to be the wagashi (Japanese confectionery) provider for the Japanese imperial family. It has two locations in Kyoto (Arashiyama and Kitano), and was recommended to me by Nao from Bar Bunkyu the night before.

老松是曾經專門提供和菓子給日本天皇的百年老鋪,在京都有兩家分店(嵐山和北野),推薦這家店的是前一天在文久喝酒時認識的調酒師Nao。

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The shop is not huge, but the tables are comfortably distanced. On the left side are floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking a beautiful courtyard, and it’s quite lovely to be eating wagashi with this as the backdrop.

店內空間不大,不過桌椅間隔距離寬敞;左邊大片的玻璃窗外有個小庭院,邊吃著和菓子邊看著窗外的景致,也太美好。

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Written by sugarednspiced

August 31st, 2016 at 3:23 am

[Kyoto] Bar Bunkyu バー文久

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Bar Bunkyu バー文久 

Add: KawaramachiSanjo, Nakagyo-ku, Kyoto
Tel: 075-211-1982
Hours: 6pm~ (closed on Thu))
Price: ~1000 yen/drink
Visited: Aug 2016

After dinner, we made our way to Bunkyu, a bar hidden in one of the alleyways of the Kawaramachi district.

晚飯之後,我們在昏暗的小巷子裏找到了這家名爲文久的隱秘酒吧。

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Upon passing through the sliding door, I was surprised to find how small the bar is. Under the dim lighting, I could roughly see a roundish square wooden bar top that seats no more than 9, and we were lucky to take up the last few empty spots.

緩緩的推開拉門,發現這個酒吧真的非常小。昏暗的燈光下隱約可以看到一個方方圓圓的木制吧台,圍繞著的座位僅能容納9個人,而我們很幸運的坐到了店內剩下的唯一幾個位子。

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The bartender in charge here is Nao, a friendly guy who’s fun to chat with, and very generous in sharing his knowledge of Kyoto and beyond (he recommended a few places for us in Arashiyama which we ended up visiting, and all were excellent).

店裏的擔當名爲直(Nao),是位笑容可掬的調酒師,整晚和我們聊的非常開心,還給我們推薦岚山不少好地方。他給我看了自己標滿餐廳酒吧的Google Map,看來真的非常喜歡吃喝(忍不住想和他握手)。

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And isn’t this little red-robed man a cutie? Nao mentioned that it’s a hobby of the bar owner to collect these dolls.

話說這個小人偶非常搶鏡,太可愛了。據Nao說,收集這種小玩偶是文久酒吧老板的嗜好。

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Written by sugarednspiced

August 31st, 2016 at 2:25 am

[Kyoto] Hirokawa 廣川

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うなぎ屋廣川 Unagiya Hirokawa

Add: 44-1 Sagatenryuji Kitatsukurimicho, Ukyo-ku, Kyoto
Tel: 075-871-5226
Hours: 11:30am-2:30pm, 5-8pm (closed on Mon)
Website: unagi-hirokawa.jp
Price: 3000 yen+
Visited: Aug 2016

Unagiya Hirokawa is a unagi-specialty restaurant located in Arashiyama, steps away from the famed Tenryu-ji Temple. There is a perpetual line outside this one-Michelin starred restaurant – we arrived just after 11:30am to find ourselves behind a long queue, and eventually waited 1.5 hours before we got seated. Was it worth the wait? Yes, but I think next time I will book in advance by paying a 1,000 yen reservation fee…

中午,到うなぎ屋廣川吃鳗魚飯。才剛過11:30,門口卻已大排長龍,最後我們等了一個半小時才得以入內。值得嗎?太值得了(反正也熱到無法在外走動)。廣川人氣居高不下的原因,除了它有米其林一星以及食べログ關西區鳗魚飯第一名的評價之外,位于天龍寺旁的地點非常方便,很多遊客都會慕名而來。其實後來發現只要支付1000日元的預約費就可以事先訂位,大家可以參考一下。

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Here’s the Unagyu Set (3,900 yen), composed of the unagi rice plus a few side dishes. Hirokawa uses eels farmed in Japan, which are priced for their superior texture and flavor, and grills them with a secrete recipe sauce passed down from over 170 years ago. The eel is delicate, fatty just to the right extent, in combination with the sweet and savory sauce and  perfectly cooked rice…just wow.

總而言之,我們等了一個半小時後坐了下來,二話不說點了うな重定食(3,900日幣)。先來說說鳗魚飯本身。廣川采用的是日本國産養殖鳗魚,相較台灣或著菲律賓産的鳗魚價格較高,而且搭配的醬料配方據說已經有170年的曆史。細嫩肥美的鳗魚、甘甜不膩的醬汁、搭配粒粒分明的米飯,完美融合的實在太、好、吃、了。雖然我平時非常討厭等位,不過一口鳗魚飯下去後,立刻覺得剛才的等待都是值得的。

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Written by sugarednspiced

August 30th, 2016 at 2:54 am

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[Kyoto] Kasagiya かさぎ屋

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かさぎ屋 Kasagiya

Add: 349 Masuyacho Higashiyamaku, Kyoto
Tel: 075-561-9562
Hours: 11am – 6pm
Price: 500-800 yen
Visited: Aug 2016

かさぎ屋 Kasagiya is a famous traditional Japanese dessert shop in Kyoto, but most people who don’t come looking for it would probably miss its low-key facade, tucked away in a corner on the Ninzenzaka. I overslept from my afternoon nap (oops) and by the time I reached there, it was only 10 minutes before their closing time (oh no!). I popped my head in as most of the guests were just leaving, giving the shop owner an apologetic look and inquired whether they were still serving. He seemed slightly hesitant initially, but seeing that I was alone (and obviously very eager), he gave an approving nod and ushered me in. Yesss.

二年坂上的かさぎ屋其實是個甜點名店,不過不知情的人應該會直接忽略掉它低調的門面吧。因爲午覺睡過頭的原因(羞),我抵達かさぎ屋時距離它關門只有10分鍾。探頭進去,店裏的客人都准備要離開了,老板有些爲難的跟我說,”我們快要關門了,沒關系嗎?啊,一個人啊…好的,那麽請進來吧“。噢,所謂的人品大爆發。

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Kasagiya was established in 1914, and for over a hundred years it’s been known for its artisanal, delicate Kyoto specialty desserts. The space is small, just enough to accommodate about 20 guests, and the nostalgic charm oozing out from every corner is quite mesmerizing.

かさぎ屋創立于1914年,是家曆史悠久的百年老店,一直以精心制作的京都特色甜品出名。空間不大,只能容納四、五組客人;店面雖然簡單,不過處處流露的歲月感非常迷人。

 

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Kasagiya is especially famed for its adzuki beans, cooked fresh everyday for over 3 hours in the traditional method until the beans are perfectly soft without losing its shape. The two desserts incorporating adzuki beans – the botamochi (made with sweet rice and sweet adzuki paste) and the Kyoto zenzai (adzuki bean soup with roasted mochi) seem to be the two most popular choices.

かさぎ屋最出名的似乎是他們每天用爐竈烹煮3小時以上的紅豆,用其做的三色荻餅和紅豆年糕湯都是人氣商品。

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August 30th, 2016 at 2:10 am

[Kyoto] さらさ西陣 Sarasa Nishijin

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さらさ西陣 Sarasa Nishijin

Add: 11-1 Higashi Fujinomori-cho, Murasakino, Kita-ku
Tel: 075-432-5075
Hours: 12-11pm (closed on the last Wed of the month)
Price: 1,000-2,000 yen/person
Visited: Aug 2016

It was way too hot to walk around outside after our lunch at Kanei, so we decided to delay our visit to Daitokuji Temple and went into the cafe next door to cool down a bit more.  I later found out that this cafe named Sarasa has 6 locations across Kyoto, and this particular one we went to in Nishijin is famous for its location inside an 80+ years old public bathhouse.

吃完蕎麥麵後下午兩點多,實在熱的讓人無法在外面走動,決定鑽入隔壁一家看起來很有趣的咖啡店避暑(咦?說好的大德寺呢?)。後來才發現這個 “さらさSarasa” 似乎小有名氣,在京都有六家分店,而我們去的這家西陣店是由一棟80多年曆時的錢湯(公共澡堂)改造而成。

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The logo, designed to resemble steam coming up from a hot spring.

門牌的字體也特意設計成像溫泉裏冒出來的煙。

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Walls of the public bathhouse have been preserved, the patterned tiles rendering the space a little bit dizzying. Even the hair and make-up of the cafe staff is matching with the whole eclectic vibe.

澡堂的牆被完整的保留了下來,整個空間的色彩缤紛無比,連店員的發型和妝容都相當匹配。

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Written by sugarednspiced

August 29th, 2016 at 1:30 pm

[Kyoto 京都] かね井 Kanei

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かね井蕎麦 Kanei

Add: 11-1 Murasakino Higashifujinomoricho, Kita Ward, Kyoto
Tel: 075-441-8283
Hours: 11:30am-2:30pm, 5-7pm (closed on Mon)
Price: 1,500-2,000 yen
Visited: Aug 2016

I didn’t plan to go to any Michelin restaurants this time in Kyoto, but as I was sorting out the itinerary, I noticed that there’s a one Michelin star soba restaurant near Daitokuji Temple which we planned to visit, so I decided to drop by for a taste. After getting off the bus in the nearest station, we walked for another 7-10 minutes in the scorching sun, eventually arriving at this humble-looking restaurant with a tiny sign that says “かね井” (Kanei), so small that it’s definitely missed unless by those specifically looking for it.

這次京都之行沒有特別安排豪華的米其林餐廳,不過在規劃行程時發現想要造訪的大德寺旁有一家米其林一星的蕎麥麵,決定順道去嚐一嚐。從公車站下來後冒著大太陽走了10分鍾左右,來到這間樸素的餐廳,外面挂著一塊不特別留意的話絕對看不到的小小招牌,上面寫著かね井(發音:kanei)。

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Upon entering the shop, I noticed that there are only about 16 seats inside, and even though it wasn’t even noon time yet, every seat has been taken. The owner lady quietly came over and said rather apologetically – I’m afraid you will have to wait for about 1 hour or so for a table. Well then, we shall wait.

推門入內,發現店裏只有16個左右的位子,所有人盤腿而坐在榻榻米上安靜地吃著麵。我抵達時才12點不到一些,不過店裏已經完全客滿了,前面還有兩位客人在等位。老板娘略帶歉意的說,可能要等一個小時哦。哎呀,那就等吧。

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In this small Japanese building of over 80 years old, the husband Toshio Kanei is busy manning the kitchen, while the wife takes care of the customers out in the front. There’s no air-conditioning even in the summer heat, only a small fan quietly doing its job; There is a small backyard garden, simply and elegantly decorated with a goldfish bowl, and a traditional Japanese wind bell making beautiful sounds with each breeze. The air is quiet, so quiet that everyone automatically lowers their voice as they enter the space.

80多年的日式建築裡,老板在廚房裏忙碌著,老板娘內外走動招呼客人。沒有空調,只有電風扇輕輕轉動著,小小的後院簡單精致,擺了一個很有禅意的金魚缸,挂了一串聲音清脆的風鈴。靜谧的氣氛讓所有人都也不自覺的輕聲細語。

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We didn’t actually wait for one hour, though it was pretty close to it. Upon being seated, we were served some cold brew tea, and started browsing though the hand-written menu. Though the restaurant is one Michelin star, it is not significantly more expensive than a regular soba joint, with the price for each a la carte item to be around 950-1,700 yen.

其實並沒有等到一個小時(不過大概也45分鍾了)。老板娘爲我們倒上了冷泡茶、遞上一份手寫的菜單。雖然說是米其林一星餐廳,不過かね井的價格跟其他蕎麥麵屋的價格似乎差不多,單點的價格950-1700日幣不等。

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August 29th, 2016 at 9:11 am

[Kyoto] Okutan 奧丹

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Okutan 奧丹

Add: 86-30 Nanzenji Fukuchicho, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto
Tel: 075-771-8709
Hours: 11am-4pm (Closed on Thu)
Website: webkyoto.com/okutan/
Price: Yudofu set meal ¥3,240

When in Kyoto, one absolutely must have a tofu meal.

I first visited Okutan’s Kiyomizu branch almost 7 years ago in winter 2009. I still distinctly remember the utter satisfaction of having a steaming hot pot of tofu after a whole morning of walking around in the wintry Kyoto air. This time back in Kyoto, I decided to pay Okutan another visit, though this time I went for its original location near Nanzenji.

去京都,一定要吃一席湯豆腐料理。

第一次造訪 “湯豆腐奧丹”,是2009年冬天。當時在京都冬日冰冷的空氣中找到了奧丹清水店,入內吃了頓熱呼呼的湯豆腐全餐,當時的惬意和滿足感至今都還印象深刻。六年多後回到京都決定再訪,不過這次,去的是更古老的南禅本店。

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Okutan’s Nanzenji location was established in 1635, and claims to be the oldest yudofu restaurant in Japan. Upon entering, we were first greeted with a lush little Japanese garden, after which we were to take off our shoes to enter the dining area. The space is equipped with floor-to-ceiling windows so that guests can enjoy the view during the meal – a lovely design. If memory serves correctly, however, I think the Kiyomizudera location has an even better view.

奧丹豆腐創立於江戶初期的1635年,號稱是日本最古老的湯豆腐料理專門店,南禪寺店是其總本家。入門後先看到的是精致的庭院,用餐區也特別設計了整排落地窗,讓客人能夠邊享用豆腐邊欣賞窗外的美景,非常貼心(不過印象中好像清水店的景觀更美?)

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I was delighted to find that the menu has not change a bit since I last visited almost 7 years ago, except that since it’s currently summer season, Okutan is also offering a chilled tofu option. The restaurant serves set menus (¥3,240 each) only, which includes yudofu/chilled tofu, vegetable tempera, sesame tofu, grated mountain yam, miso baked tofu, rice, and pickles.

脫鞋後,踏入榻榻米的房間。六年後再訪奧丹,發現菜單完全沒有變,令人安心,不過由于是夏季,所以有當時我沒嘗到的冷豆腐。奧丹僅提供套餐(各3240日元),內容除了有湯豆腐/冷豆腐之外、還有蔬菜天婦羅、胡麻豆腐、山藥泥、木芽田樂豆腐,白飯和漬物。

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Yudofu started near the end of Edo Period right near Nanzenji, originally intended for the monks only. Authentic, handcrafted tofu relies on high-quality soy beans, good water in which to soak and boil them, and of course the expertise of the tofu maker. What we get in supermarkets today is lacking in the pure taste of soy beans and the flavor of their protein, an unfortunate result of mass production.

湯豆腐源于江戶末期,發起地就是南禅寺附近,原本是寺內僧侶實用的精進料理。由于水質的關系,這裏的豆腐素以質感細膩、滋味淡雅而聞名;看似樸實,但經由匠人們堅持傳統的制程、料理、擺設,能演化多種層次風貌。在奧丹,就是要品嚐這個古老的文化。

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August 29th, 2016 at 2:30 am

[Kyoto 京都] % Arabica

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% Arabica Kyoto

Add: (Higashiyama) 87-5 Hoshinocho, Higashiyama Ward, Kyoto
(Arashiyama)3-47 Sagatenryuji Susukinobanacho, Ukyo-ku, Kyoto
Hours: 8am-6pm
Price: 350 yen+/coffee
Website: www.arabica.coffee
Visited on: Aug 2016

In September 2014, a coffee shop named “% Arabica” opened right near the beautiful Yasaka Pagoda in Kyoto, inside an old Japanese house of over 50 years old. The facade is low-key, but the stylish vibe oozing out from large window panes immediately attracts the passerby.

2014年9月,在古色古香的京都八坂塔旁一棟50多年的日式房子裏,開了一家名叫 “% Arabica” 的咖啡館。外觀低調,然而透過大片玻璃窗滲透出來讓人無法忽視的時髦感,輕而易舉地將路人都吸引了過去。

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The entrance of the shop is a concrete replicate of the cobblestone pattern of Yasaka Street, which makes it seem like the outside pavement continues right into the shop, creating an illusion of a side street off the alleyway.

我在京都住的地方正好在離% Arabica步行五分鍾之處,趁一大早還沒什麽人,找了過去。門口玻璃的通透感,以及店內延用與街道上相似的地磚,都讓人有種鑽入小巷子的錯覺。

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The space is elongated, with a bar on the left, coffee bean storage on the right, and a roasting area deep inside. The transparent cellar displays coffee beans meticulously selected from all over the world, and conveniently, by installing the storage required to maintain temperature and humidity for the best quality coffee beans, it was also provided the necessary support for this old house. A perfect combination of the old and new.

入門後的狹長空間左邊是吧台,右邊是咖啡豆儲存櫃,最裡頭還有烘豆室。透明的咖啡儲存櫃的展示著從世界各地精選而來的豆子,而且很實用的是,在搭建這個嶄新儲存櫃的同時,也給原本木制老房子添了必要的結構支持,是完美的新舊結合。

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This Slayer espresso machine, customized especially for % Arabica, is just too beautiful. I want to learn how to make coffee just so I can use this machine. Tell me you don’t feel the same.

% Arabica這台特別定制的Slayer咖啡機,實在太太太帥了。好想爲了它學會如何煮咖啡(誤)。

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August 26th, 2016 at 9:02 am

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[Kyoto] Tsujirihei Matcha Castella 辻利兵衛本店 抹茶かすてら

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Tsujirihei Honten 辻利兵衛本店

Add: 611-0021 京都府宇治市宇治若森41
Tel: 0774-23-1111
Hours: 9am~5pm (closed on weekends)
Website: www.tsujirihei.co.jp
Tasted on: 2012-04

Here’s something to brighten up this rainy day: a beautiful and delicious packet of matcha castella from Kyoto’s famous green tea shop, Tsujirihei 辻利兵衛本店. I’ve previously blogged about castella from Nagasaki’s Fukusaya, and I’m happy to present to you the green tea variation on this simple Japanese sponge cake. If you have read my Kyoto travel posts, you might remember Uji, a tranquil little town that’s especially famous for its green tea. Tsujirihei is one of the most historical and well-respected green tea specialty shops in Uji (along with Nakamura Tokichi 中村藤吉 which I also adore), and its green tea desserts are naturally meticulously created.

The Japanese are true masters at packaging design, and the encasing of Tsujirihei’s matcha castella is no exception. Each layer is designed for a specific purpose, and all together they keep the cake fresh until it’s ready to be eaten. If you want to see what each layer is meant for, click here to see my previous post on Fukusaya castella.

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Written by sugarednspiced

April 9th, 2012 at 7:18 pm

[Kyoto] Kiyomizu-dera 清水寺

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Kiyomizu-dera 清水寺

Add: 1-294 Kiyomizu Higashiyama-ku, Kyoto
Hours: 6am-6pm
Price: ¥300/person
Website: www.kiyomizudera.or.jp
Visited: Nov 2010

Among the hundreds of temples and shrines in Kyoto, Kiyomizu-dera (Pure Water Temple) stands out as a must visit. Originally built in 798 and reconstructed in 1633, the temple is best known for its wooden stage that juts out 13 meters above the hillside below, offering an impressive view of cherry blossoms in the Spring or maple leaves in the Fall with Kyoto city in the backdrop.

Kiyomizu-dera is extremely popular even during off seasons, so we made that our first destination in the morning to beat the crowd. To get there, take bus 100 or 206 (15 minutes, ¥220) from Kyoto Station, get off at Kiyomizu-michi bus stop, then take a 10-minute uphill stroll via Chawan-zaka (茶わん坂) to reach Kiyomizu-dera.

At the entrance of Kiyomizu-dera, we rinsed our mouths and hands at the stone water basin. This is a common practice at all Japanese temples and shrines, since it is believed that such purification is necessary before entering sacred temple grounds.

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Written by sugarednspiced

November 21st, 2010 at 11:39 pm