Feel revitalized with the incredible rice balls of onigiri specialist—ao・onigiri
ao・onigiri is an Onigiri specialist, where you can indulge in fresh, hand-made onigiri rice balls.
Onigiri refers to the triangular or sometimes round balls of rice which have been a cherished staple of Japanese lunch boxes, and even just as snacks on the go, for millennia.
Here at ao・onigiri, you get to sit down at the counter and see the owner cook up onigiri rice balls right in front of you, just like at a traditional sushi restaurant.
From making sure the kitchen is stocked, to prepping the ingredients and whipping up the onigiri, the experienced head chef and owner, Aomatsu, runs the entire place by himself.
That’s probably why when it gets busy, Aomatsu doesn’t waste time on formalities and can come off a bit direct.
So depending on your timing, you might walk in and feel a bit of tension in the air.
However, no matter how Aomatsu comes across, there’s one thing you can be sure of, that he’ll be in there every day, cooking up Japanese soul food, with the sole purpose of bringing a little bit of sunshine to your day.
And that feeling definitely comes across in every single one of the delicious onigiri he makes too.
So when you come to ao・onigiri, don’t judge a book by its cover, go in with an open mind and save any judgments for after you’ve tried a mouthful of the absolutely mouthwatering rice balls.
ao・onigiri does have a fantastic English menu as well, but they are certainly not trying to pander to Kyoto’s tourist crowd. ao・onigiri cherishes locals and work to be a spot loved and frequented by those locals.
That’s why we think ao・onigiri is the perfect place for anyone wanting to get off the beaten path of sightseeing spots in Kyoto and enjoy somewhere that’s, at its heart, by locals, for locals.