Apr. 25, 2018 UPDATE

Top 4 tea shops in Kyoto! Japanese tea-souvenirs for everyone!

Kyoto’s Japanese tea is world-famous, so it’s only natural it’s a popular souvenir. Here are the four best tea shops in Kyoto! Let’s go taste some tea!
Japanese Tea

I’m sure that everyone thinks of matcha when they think of Kyoto! And the Uji region of Kyoto is known as the “home ground of matcha,” as there are many tea fields in Uji and most of the tea made in Kyoto comes from here. In Japanese culture, tea is something essential to the daily life of Japanese people. No matter whether at home or in a restaurant, everyone will have a cup of tea after eating to ease the digestion. The tea of Kyoto has been getting famous overseas too, so now many tourists go to these tea shops to taste their wares and compare the tastes of the teas. This time I have found some great tea shops in Kyoto, so come join me on my trip to learn more about Japanese tea!


1Ippodo TeaIppodo Tea is located in the Nijo Teramachi area, and it was founded around 300-years ago. It sells Japanese tea such as matcha, gyokuro, sencha, and bancha. Once you step inside, you’re hit by the fragrance of tea. You can also smell some tea samples here, and deepen your understanding of the profound world of Japanese tea. 



Gyokuro is one of the most expensive teas you can buy, and it’s expensive because there is almost no bitterness in it but instead its aftertaste is pure umami. But did you know that both gyokuro and matcha come from the same tea plants? They are both grown under a shade, but after that, the methods of making gyokuro and matcha differ. So why not try both here? 


They also sell teapots and cups, so that you can easily enjoy the tea you bought at home. The shop is often full of foreign tourists, so the staff should be able to understand some English! 



2Fukujuen Kyoto Flagship Store

Fukujuen Kyoto Flagship Store is located on Shijo Street, and the store itself was founded in the second year of Kansei, in 1790. On the first floor, they have a tea shop, on the second floor a café, on the third a French restaurant that uses Japanese teas in their food, and on the fourth a tea room where you can experience the tea ceremony. 

 

Although Fukujuen is a long-established tea shop, there is something modern about the design of their tea caddies. You can find many teas from Uji here, such as gyokuro, sencha, and matcha. 



On the second floor, you can enjoy Fukujuen’s handmade sweets with a cup of tea. How about having some afternoon tea here after buying some tea? 



3Nakamura Tokichi Honten

If you have come to Uji, you probably already know about Nakamura Tokichi! Nakamura Tokichi is well known for its matcha sundae served in a bamboo container, but you can also buy many kinds of teas here. 

 


Besides gyokuro and sencha, they also sell Nakamura tea, which is a blend of seven different teas. Although it’s a blend of seven teas, you can still taste each tea in it. 


You can also taste the teas before buying at Nakamura Tokichi, but beware: it’s easy to get addicted to great Japanese teas here! They also sell some sweets for you to take home, so you could buy some sweets and tea, and enjoy Japanese afternoon tea back in your country too! 



4Marukyu Koyamaen Nishinotoin Motoan Tea House

Although Marukyu Koyamaen’s flagship shop is in Uji, they also have a shop in Kyoto called Motoan Tea House. The shop is in a machiya-style townhouse and you can just feel the long history of the place in the atmosphere. 


Miyabi no In is a limited edition matcha you can only buy here, and it has only a little bit of bitterness to it, but the aftertaste is very sweet. They also have many matcha sweets on sale, so I recommend getting some matcha sweets to have with your matcha! They also have a café at the shop, so you can have some afternoon tea here too! 


Vanessa[ Sharing Kyoto Staff ] STAFF DETAIL
My friends also like Japanese tea, and we often go to buy it! For me, a great dinner needs end in a hot cup of gyokuro or sencha green tea in order for the meal to be complete. I personally want to recommend Ippodo’s gyokuro, and although it’s a bit expensive, the taste is well worth it!
Related keywords
All Shops Japanese Tea All Kyoto Area
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