Yakitori Skewers Even Vegetarians can Enjoy
Kushikura is best known for their charcoal-grilled yakitori chicken and seasonal Kyoyasai veggie skewers.
Using the owner’s particular choice of special chicken meat and vegetables, Kushikura slowly grills every skewer over a high-grade charcoal known as binchotan.
With a deliciously crisp outside and juicy, soft center, Kushikura’s yakitori skewers are a hit with both out-of-towners and locals alike.
While the food is, of course, great, the vibe at Kushikura is also something not to be missed.
Sitting inside an over 100-year-old Kyoto townhouse that used to be an old kimono shop, Kushikura offers a nice spacious interior.
After taking off your shoes and stepping inside, you’ll come across two traditional nakaniwa Japanese courtyard gardens as you make your way to a horigotatsu table. (horigotatsu give off the look of traditional floor seating but feature recessed floors, turning them into regular with plenty of space to stretch your legs).
Everything about Kushikura, from the moment you step foot inside, gives off this amazing “Japanese” vibe.
During dinner service, Kushikura only offers courses. This means you won’t be able to order a single dish or just a drink.
Also, if you’re unable to eat anything in the courses, don’t worry.
Because Kushikura receives so many customers from overseas, they’re pretty flexible with meeting people’s needs. And in fact, even offer a vegetable-only vegetarian menu and gluten-free menu too!
If you’d like either of the two, make sure to tell the restaurant when making your reservation so that everything goes smoothly when you arrive.
Even if you have dietary restrictions, you’ll still be able to have an incredible time at Kushikura.
5 Skewer Course
/ ￥2,000 (inc. tax)
Kushikura’s 5 Skewer Course is the smallest course on their menu.
This course comes with an appetizer, vegetable sticks with miso dipping sauce and five of Kushikura’s signature charcoal-grilled skewers (if any of the skewers have things you aren’t a big fan of, ask the staff and they’ll change them for you).
This course is the perfect size for those who don’t eat much.
However, if you think you can fit in a bit more, we highly recommend ordering a few individual skewers off the menu as well!
/ From ￥280 (inc. tax)
Kushikura also offers individual skewers that you can add to any course.
Pictured above are the popular Hounen-Kushi (top – ¥420) and Premium Japanese Beef (bottom – ¥1,000) skewers.
The amazing smelling Hounen-Kushi skewer is made of chicken meatballs coated in sticky mochi rice.
Make sure to eat this one quick as it loses some of its texture and aroma as it cools.
The Premium Japanese Beef skewer features a big cut of juicy, delicious premium Japanese sirloin, which goes best with a simple sprinkle of salt.
Chicken Hitsumabushi (lunch only)
/ ￥1,800 (inc. tax)
While hitsumabushi is traditionally a meal of grilled eel topped rice you scoop from the “ohitsu” wooden rice bowl onto a different bowl, Kushikura’s Chicken Hitsumabushi replaces eel with chicken.
Something else unique about this Chicken Hitsumabushi is that you pour dashi stock in at the end.
This unique addition of dashi provides the dish with the combination of the soup stock's gentle flavors and the unmistakable aroma of Japanese charcoal cooking.
The set comes with a detailed English explanation, so you'll have nothing to worry about when ordering.
/ From ￥350 (inc. tax)
Kushikura also offers a seasonal menu which uses the best tasting vegetables for each specific season.
Above is a Kyo-age skewer made from turnip leaves wrapped in fried tofu.
In addition to the Kyo-age, Kushikura also has other vegetarian skewers and can even accommodate those who are gluten-free.
If you’re either of the two, let the restaurant known when you make your booking, or tell the staff when you arrive at the restaurant.