Aug. 16, 2019 UPDATE

Soba Shubo Ichii

- 蕎麦酒房 櫟(そばしゅぼう いちい) -
Pre-soba sake & post-sake soba – Enjoy Japan’s soba culture, delicious duck and profound sincerity
Located one bus stop over from Kinkaku-ji (The Golden Pavilion) sits the restaurant Soba Shubo Ichii. Living up to its name, this restaurant has been serving both soba noodles, a massive range of different Japanese sake, and Sobamae (pre-soba appetizers and drinks), since it opened its doors in 2015. Owner Ichihara told us that what he loved about sobamae was that it allows you to sit back with a drink, have a snack and enjoy a bowl of soba, all in one place. He continued by saying that his reason for opening Ichii was that he wished to make sobamae a known part of Japanese food culture. In addition to his love for soba, Ichihara also has a fierce dedication to quality ingredients as well. Ichii’s soba noodles are cut fresh every day and boiled in beautiful water from the mountainous area of Kyomi-toge. The rather bougie dashi soup stock features Kafuka grown Rishi kombu and Wasanbon sugar for added flavor. The vegetables are all home-grown, while the exquisite duck meat is a brand called Kawachi Kamo. Including Ichii, the number of restaurants that offer this specific brand of duck meat in Kyoto can be counted on one hand. In addition, everything served at Ichii is additive and pesticide-free. Owner Ichihara’s devotion can truly be seen reflected in this absolute thoroughness. Ichihara believes that “The best food is that made with sincerity and love for the person eating it. That’s why mother’s cooking made with love for her child tops anything else.” The tenderness that comes from this sincerity he talks about and his refined culinary skills are both fully on display in every one of his dishes. At Soba Shubo Ichii, you’re sure to be treated to both beautiful dishes made with honesty and sincerity and the Japanese culture of drinking at soba shops.
Seiro Soba – Buckwheat Noodles
Seiro Soba – Buckwheat Noodles / ¥1,480 (Inc. Tax)
This Seiro Soba comes with cold soba noodles and a warm bowl of concentrated tsuyu noodle dipping sauce, which is filled with thickly cut duck meat. The flavorful, yet lightly aromatic kombu dashi together with the delicious umami of the duck meat is why this is one of Soba Shubo Ichii’s most beloved dishes. The best aspect of this dish is the heavenly combination of the aromatic and chewy hand-cut soba noodles with the tsuyu soaked, juicy duck meat. Near the end of the dish, warm Soba-yu will also be provided (see How to Order for details). This dish is a must-try when coming to Soba Shubo Ichii.
Kamo Namban Soba – Buckwheat Noodles w/ Duck Meat and Japanese Leek
Kamo Namban Soba – Buckwheat Noodles w/ Duck Meat and Japanese Leek / ¥1,480 (Inc. Tax)
This Kamo Namban Soba is a bowl of soba noodles in a warm broth topped with Kawachi duck meat. The perfectly grilled Japanese leeks are sweet, while the Mitsuba leaf adds an accent to the dish. The nearly clear dashi soup is gentle, yet flavorful. This dish is perfect for those times when you just want to warm up or for a post-drinks bowl of noodles. The three pieces of Kawachi duck are meat abandonedly thick, making this bowl of soba an incredibly satisfying and filling dish.
Duck Breast Grilled w/ Salt
3Let's Try!
Duck Breast Grilled w/ Salt / ¥1,200 (Inc. Tax)
This dish is a specialty of Soba Shubo Ichii and features Kawachi duck meat from Tsumura Honten. The duck meat is seasoned with salt and grilled. The duck meat lacks any of the gaminess usually expected of duck and is exceptionally soft. The dish comes with a side of lemon salt and Yuzu pepper with which you can enjoy a rainbow of different flavors. The duck meat is fresh enough to even eat raw; however, you can feel free to request the degree to which you would like it cooked. If you’re going try Sobamae and order a drink, then this is the perfect dish to do it with.
Seasonal Tempura
4Let's Try!
Seasonal Tempura / ¥1,150 (Inc. Tax)
Soba Shubo Ichii fries their tempura in a special copper pot which conducts heat well. The tempura is fried one ingredient at a time, abd Ichii make sure to adjust the temperature accordingly each time. This dish is truly an example of owner Ichihara’s culinary talents. Using only homegrown vegetables, Ichii offer a range of tempura, including some not so common ones, such as broccoli. The tempura comes with a side of both dipping sauce and salt. The salt allows you to enjoy the crunchy batter of the tempura, while the dipping sauce gives you a wonderful aroma and brings out some of the beautiful flavors of the ingredients.
How to Order

Ichii is a one person, one order restaurant, meaning that everyone in your party will have to place an order. They would also very much like people to refrain from bringing any food or drinks from outside into the restaurant.

When you order a dish, such as Seiro Soba, that comes with a side of dipping sauce, near the end of the meal you will be given soba-yu. Pour the soba-yu into your remaining dipping sauce to make a delicious, umami filled soup! Alternatively, try the soba-yu on its own and see what you think.

 Also, it’s not necessary to finish all the warm dipping sauce. That being said, it’s also not rude if you decide to drink it either. In fact, trying the dipping sauce on its own will give you an unadulterated look at the kombu utilized in the dashi.

- Order Tips -

tips - ichii

Limited to only ten orders a day, Soba Shubo Ichii also sell a buckwheat seed packed crème Brulee! 

 With the aroma of soba, this crème Brulee features a sprinkling of charred buckwheat seeds which, together with the crackly caramel add a beautiful accent to the dessert’s texture.

The aroma from the buckwheat seeds as they crack in your mouth in combination with the rich, creaminess of the crème Brulee makes for a seriously outstanding dessert. 

For those wanting to end their meal with something sweet, we recommend getting here early and ordering this wonderfully unique crème Brulee. 

3.5 food3.8 service3.8 atmosphere3.0
Overseas Tourist-Friendly
3.5 food4.0 service3.5 atmosphere3.0
Honestly, I didn’t really know what “sobamae” was at first. In Japan a lot of people eat soba and other noodles after drinking, but this idea of purposefully getting drinks and appetizers in order to enjoy the soba afterward was entirely fresh to me! Not only does Ichii have a huge variety of dishes, including exquisite soft duck, tempura and crème Brule, they also made them all down right delicious. Ichii isn’t too far from Kinkaku-ji either, so if you’re sightseeing in the area, make sure to take the chance to check them out!
3.5 food3.5 service4.0 atmosphere3.0
I am such a fan of duck that if it’s on the menu, no questions asked, I’m ordering it. But when I first tried the duck at Ichii, I was nearly moved to tears. It had the perfect balance of juiciness, softness, and that classic duck chewiness. And enjoying it with a glass of sake on top of that! Simply perfect! My personal recommendation is the Seiro Soba. The chewiness of the 100% buckwheat soba with the combination of duck meat and Japanese leeks was outstanding. I highly recommend this dish to anyone wanting to try simple, yet delicious soba.
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Soba Shubo Ichii / 蕎麦酒房 櫟(そばしゅぼう いちい)
Category Soba Noodles
Phone +81 50-5597-1493
Address Eng: 62 Hirano Miyanishicho, Kita Ward, Kyoto, 603-8357 Jpn: 京都府京都市北区平野宮西町62
Directions 1 minute walk from Waratenjin-mae Bus Stop 10 minutes from the Kitano-Hakubaichō Station
Open Hours Lunch: 11:30–14:00 Dinner: 18:00–21:00 (Last Order: 20:30)
Reservations Available
Closed Wednesdays
Price range
Credit cards Credit Card Payments Available
Good for Solo, Romantic, With Friends, Families with Children
Overseas Tourist-Friendly
Basic English
Menu Japanese & English
Lanuages spoken Basic English
Number of seats 24
Private dining rooms Available (up to 8 people)
Non smoking / smoking Non-smoking
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