Hi,I’m Keiko from Osaka!
Kyoto cuisine is well known for it’s refined and delicate taste.
Beautifully Created dishes are like an art, it will please both your tongue and your eyes.
There are more than 170 Michelin star restaurants in Kyoto.You can enjoy delicious dishes in a Japanese traditional atmosphere at these Michelin restaurants.
But since there are many Michelin restaurants, which restaurant is the best?
Kyoto’s fine dining must be a once in a lifetime experience for you.
I would like to share with you Top 5 best Michelin restaurants in Kyoto where you can enjoy a great dishes in a Japanese traditional atmosphere!
Top 10 best Michelin Starred Restaurants in Kyoto in 2020!
1.Kikunoi Honten/菊乃井本店Made in the first year of the Taisho era, Kikunoi Honten is one of the only three restaurants in Japan that has received the 3 stars 5 red cutlery ratings in the Michelin guide: a rating only given to the most highest quality restaurants around the world.
The third owner and master chef of Kikunoi, Yoshihiro Murata, born as the first son in a family running the most well-known, long-standing restaurant in Kyoto, works with many of his other talented chefs that amuses us with exquisite Japanese cuisine.
Kikunoi offers 5 different levels of kaiseki course menus which range from 10,000~ 30,000 yen.
They are presented with 12 seasonal dishes which include fresh sashimi to a delightful variation of desserts. (Dishes vary according to the season)
Because Kikunoi is one of the most renowned restaurants in Kyoto, it is must to make reservations in advance moreover a few weeks in prior.
If you are planning a trip to Kyoto, there is no better place to enjoy the traditional Kaiseki cuisine than Kikunoi Honten!
2.Gion Sasaki/祇園 さゝ木Gion Sasaki is always full, making it one of the most difficult restaurants to make reservations at in Kyoto.
This restaurant serves a crowd-pleasing variety of Japanese Cuisine, completely overturns the concept of traditional Kyo-Kaiseki cuisine with its luxurious presentation, alluring taste, and most importantly it’s cost performance.
Despite the lavish spread of food they serve, their lunch can be enjoyed from 5,500 yen which is quite affordable compared to other prestigious restaurants in Kyoto.
Dishes mainly include seasonal seafood, and the menu is constantly renewed so that customers can enjoy the finest food at the perfect season.
Chef Sasaki has quite the reputation as he thoughtfully demonstrates the ways we can enjoy our food.
As I said before, Gion Sasaki is a restaurant well-known for its difficulty in making reservations.
It is said that reservations must be taken more than a month ahead of time, and if you are lucky enough, they will put you on the waiting list.
Not only does Gion Sasaki please your appetite, but it also entertains your eyes. It is a must-go restaurant when visiting Kyoto.
If you want to reserve Sasaki for sure,Reservation service is available at Voyagin:here
3.Isshi Soden Nakamura/なかむらNakamura is a historical kaiseki restaurant that dates back to the edo era (17-19th century).
Nakamura has been a Michelin 3 starred restaurant consistently since 2011.
Its name is known to world class chefs and has become the representation of Kyoto cuisine and Japanese kaiseki.
The current chef, Mr. Nakamura, is the 6th generation chef.
Nakamura is housed in a historical machiya (traditional townhouse) with a central garden that you can see from your private dining room.
Lunch course meal starts at 15,000 yen while dinner course starts at 20,000 yen.
It is 5 Minutes walk from Karasuma-oike station.
4. Kikusui/菊水Kikusui is a restaurant located in the beautiful garden, a stone’s throw away from Nanzen-ji temple.
Once you step into the restaurant, you will feel completely relaxed and at peace because of the tranquil garden that surround you and the dining area.
The kaiseki meals here are orchestrated by Head Chef Matsuo who has received 3 Michelin stars with his restaurant, Kashiwaya.
At Kikusui, you will enjoy the Michelin 3 starred Japanese-French cuisine as well as the breathtaking garden views.
You can actually stay in Kikusui overnight and have the renowned breakfast that are available only to 5 groups of guests.
5.Kichisen/吉泉Kichisen offers a cha-kaiseki styled (tea ceremony) course meal.
It has earned 3 stars in the past.
The Chef became extremely popular after appearing in a cooking competition show on TV.
You will enjoy the season not only through the perfectly executed meals but through the careful selection of the tableware.
Kichisen is around 10 minutes from Demachi Yanagi Station, near Shimogamo Shrine.
Lunch course meal is around 10,000 yen.
6.Ifuki/いふきIfuki is Michelin two star restaurant run by husband and wife.
They serve seasonal cuisine which are all full of originality and a sense of Japanese beauty.
Locally produced vegetables are charcoal-grilled and can be enjoyed with a variety of wine and sake, of which the master chef, also sommelier, offers.
The antique style interior of the restaurant gives a calm, relaxing atmosphere which makes you feel at home.
If you want to reserve ifuki for sure,Reservation service is available at Voyagin:here
7.Gion Matayoshi/祇園又吉Gion Matayoshi is a unique restaurant in Gion area where many well-established restaurants gather.
Chef Matayoshi is from Okinawa, thus his Kyoto-kaiseki is influenced by his introduction of unique ingredients from Okinawa.
The chef choses the best of the ingredients from all over Japan, and he even picks the best tableware for each of his dishes.
Lunch Omakase (chef’s recommendation) starts around 20,000 yen.
8.Fukiage/ふきあげFukiage is a famous sushi restaurant tucked in Nishigamo area.
From the restaurant you can enjoy the beautiful view of Mt. Daimonji.
At Fukiage, you are guaranteed to enjoy the freshest and heavily seasonal seafood.
This restaurant has only one menu, chef’s recommendation.
It is around 37,000 yen, but worth it.
9. Mitsuyasu/光安Mitsuyasu is a very small restaurant housed in a beautiful small machiya.
Here you can enjoy the greatest Kyoto kaiseki in its simplest form, but executed perfectly.
For example, a popular dish here is a simple egg york, marinated in miso for 3 years.
The restaurant only has two tables, each sitting the maximum of 6 people.
Despite its exclusivity, the restaurant is fairly affordable.
Lunch starts around 6,000 to 18,000 yen.
There is no menu.
10. Roan Kikunoi/露庵 菊乃井Roan Kikunoi is one of the Kikunoi group of restaurants.
Original Kikunoi (Honten) is extremely famous in Japan and in the World, being in business since 1912.
Roan Kikunoi is run by the younger brother of Chef Murata that runs the original Kikunoi.
Roan Kikunoi has been in business since 1976.
While many kaiseki restaurants seek the simplicity based on the wabi-sabi concept, this restaurant offers simple yet dynamic dishes.
At Roan, you can enjoy the same level of food quality, service with Kiknoi.
The highlight of Roan is that you can enjoy the Chef’s skills from your counter seat.
A lunch course starts around 7,000 yen.
These restaurants will definitely offer you once in a lifetime experience in Kyoto.
I hope you’ll enjoy the best dining in Kyoto!