WHAT’S is a yakiniku restaurant located in downtown Kyoto specializing in the famous variety of wagyu known as Matsusaka Beef.
Matsusaka Beef refers to beef from cattle that were kept in feedlots in either Mie Prefecture’s Matsusaka City or its surrounding area. Matsusaka Beef has come to be known as a high-end variety of wagyu not only in Japan but abroad as well.
At WHAT’S, you can enjoy a huge range of dishes, including char-grilled yakiniku with various cuts of carefully selected Matsusaka Beef, in addition to Matsusaka Beef sushi and garlic rice.
While WHAT’S might look like some kind of bunker from the outside, the inside offers an interior unimaginably spacious from just looking at the outside.
Utilizing a renovated 80-year-old Kyoto townhouse, the restaurant features a traditional Japanese courtyard and a pond with colorful goldfish.
All of the tables are either semi or fully partitioned so you can enjoy your meal away from the prying eyes of strangers.
Whether it’s a nice dinner out with the family or a romantic date with a loved one, WHAT’S is great for every occasion.
WHAT’S also has English and Chinese speaking staff as well, so you won’t have to worry about any pesky language barriers either. If you want, the staff will also kindly explain the various cuts of beef and dishes to you as well.
When you’re feeling like treating yourself to a high-end, premium quality yakiniku dinner, then there's no place better than WHAT’S!
/ ￥20,000 (inc. tax)
WHAT’S' Special Set features four different cuts of beef that range from lean to marbled.
The set consists of the highest grade cuts served at WHAT’S that day and includes chateaubriand and sirloin.
When you go, ask the staff which cuts are in the set for that day.
This set is the absolute best way to experience the incredible flavors of Matsusaka Beef. For the largest cut, the rib eye steak, use the scissors provided to cut it up after grilling and then dip it in the side of sukiyaki sauce.
This set is a good size for sharing between two to four people.
Today’s Matsusaka Beef Sushi (6 Pieces)
/ ￥5,000 (inc. tax)
Similar to the above, this dish consists of three varieties of Matsusaka Beef, ranging from lean to marbled.
Placed on top of each piece of sushi are specific seasonings for each cut of beef. These include ponzu jelly and wasabi. While each slice of beef has been lightly grilled and you can enjoy the sushi as is, since the beef is still quite rare when served, you can always ask to have it cooked for longer.
/ ￥1800 (inc. tax)
Garlic rice – the perfect dish to accompany your beef. What you see on top is, of course, Matsusaka Beef. On top of that are garlic chips, scallions and a dowsing of sauce. Served in a piping hot stone bowl, the sizzling sound of the rice paired with the delicious aroma of sauce and garlic is sure to get your stomach rumbling.
As a side note, it’s pretty common for carbs like rice or noodles to be eaten as a closer to a meal, so if you have room left over, do like the locals and order yourself a bowl of garlic rice to finish your dinner.
Drinks (sake, plum wine, etc)
/ Fruit Wine (glass): ¥700– / Wine (glass): ¥800– / Wine (bottle): ¥3,500– / Sake (ichigo / ten servings): ¥900– (bottles avail.) (inc. tax)
WHAT'S also offers a huge range of fruit wine, Japanese sake and regular wine.
Some drinks can also be ordered by the bottle, so if you're going in a large group, then this is a great option.
If you're a fan of sake, then we definitely recommend ordering some as WHAT'S has a wide selection of Kyoto sake and you'll be able to get a taste of what local Kyoto sake is like.
If you're coming more for the beef, then get yourself a glass of WHAT'S' special sparkling water, as it'll help refresh your palate, leaving you good and ready for another mouthful of delicious, delicious beef.