Mar. 26, 2019 UPDATE

Kikyo Sushi

- 桔梗寿司 -
Because of their hospitality, Kikyo Sushi is loved by both locals and visitors from overseas alike
Kikyo Sushi is a sushi restaurant with a long history located just a few minutes from Nijo Castle in Horikawa-Marutamachi. The restaurant is really popular, and this is not only because of the reasonably priced sushi, but also because of the heartfelt hospitality of the master sushi-chef, his wife, and his son. The son of the chef speaks fluent English, and uses a tablet to explain the specialties they have on offer that day, so ordering here is really easy. He’s also an official sake sommelier called “Kikizakeshi” so if you want to know something about sake, just ask him, and he’ll tell you what type of sake goes best with the kind of sushi you’re ordering. Many sushi places in Kyoto may seem like they’re not that welcoming, but Kikyo Sushi is an exception. The restaurant could be said to be the most foreigner-friendly restaurant in the whole of Kyoto. And their lunch sets start at under 1,000 yen!
Sushi Fuji
Sushi Fuji / ¥1,600
Sushi Fuji is a sushi set that contains eight types of sushi, squid, tuna, kanpachi (greater amberjack), octopus, cockles (shellfish), snapper, prawn, and sea el (anago). After eating this set, you’ll understand that the way of preparing each type of sushi is different. I also hope you’ll try the “gari” you get with the sushi, as gari is actually ginger, so it helps to warm your body, as sushi makes your body colder. This is a set of sushi, so it’s nice for those who cannot decide what to order.
Seared bonito
Seared bonito / ¥1,000
The restaurant has their own secret ponzu-sauce (a citrus-based sauce), and here you have seared bonito in it with both ginger and garlic, and its topped with copious amounts of green onion. This menu item is really popular, and the ponzu sauce is so delicious I almost wanted to drink it all, so be sure to try this!
Sashimi Assorted (5 kinds)
3Let's Try!
Sashimi Assorted (5 kinds) / ¥1,200
This assortment includes kanpachi, tuna, tai (sea bream), squid, and salmon (ingredients may change seasonally). Besides squid, each sashimi is served in two slices. If it’s your first time eating sashimi, you get to eat different kinds of sashimi little by little, so you can find out what type of sashimi you like. Like sushi, sashimi is dipped into soy sauce, but at this restaurant, you can also ask for gluten-free soy sauce if you’re on a gluten-free diet. They have many types of sashimi on the menu, so if you can’t decide what kind of sashimi to order, please order this assortment.
Mackerel sushi
4Let's Try!
Mackerel sushi / ¥1,000 (4 pieces)
Mackerel sushi is a type of traditional sushi in Kyoto that is a local delicacy. This cured sushi was popular in the ancient times when raw fish was difficult to transport to Kyoto, as Kyoto is located inland. Mackerel sushi is the most famous of the traditional ways of enjoying sushi in Kyoto. Mackerel sushi is even sold in supermarkets in Kyoto, and it’s almost an everyday staple in Kyoto. As you eat the mackerel sushi at Kikyo Sushi, you get to feel how nicely pressed it is: the rice and fish feel as if they were one. The fatty mackerel melts in your mouth and is delicious. The sushi tastes a bit strongly of vinegar, and it’s a special kind of taste, but the people of Kyoto have loved this taste for a long time, so I recommend this to those who want to try the soul food of Kyoto.
How to Order

how to order - Kikyo Sushi

They will explain their menu to you using a tablet, all in English. They are really thorough, but if you have something you want to know, just ask them! They will answer in fluent English. 

- Order Tips -

tips - Kikyo Sushi

As the young master of Kikyo Sushi is a certified International Kikisake-shi (sake sommelier), you can taste delicious sake here. 

International Kikisake-shi is a person who not only knows a lot about sake, but also knows how to teach people of different countries, economic backgrounds, cultures, and traditions, how to enjoy sake. 

He will ask your questions about sake and tell you what sake goes the best with each dish, so if you want to have sake, ask him about his opinion. 

You can also have a tasting set like in the picture. By drinking different kinds of sake, you’ll notice that they taste different depending on where they’re made and what sake brewery has made them and that they have different tastes and fragrances. You get to drink many types of sake, so this is a nice set for those who want to find out what type of sake they like. A set containing three types of sake is 700 yen and one with four types is 900 yen. 

3.2 food3.0 service3.5 atmosphere3.0
Overseas Tourist-Friendly
3.2 food3.0 service3.5 atmosphere3.0
Kikyo Sushi is quite a special place because of their hospitality. Many "real" sushi restaurants are not very welcoming if you don't know Japanese, but at Kikyo Sushi, the son of the owner of the restaurant speaks even better English than I do! And he's also a sake sommelier, so this is the perfect place to get to know the world of sake better. The restaurant looks really traditional but welcoming. One of the best places in Kyoto for an authentic sushi experience, especially if you don't speak Japanese.
3.2 food3.0 service3.5 atmosphere3.0
This restaurant is one of the most popular on TripAdvisor, and now I know why. The food is delicious, but the star of the show is the welcoming atmosphere. They really want you to enjoy the dishes they serve. When my foreign friends come to Kyoto I’m going to take them to Kikyo Sushi.
3.3 food3.5 service3.5 atmosphere3.0
Overseas Tourist-Friendly
3.3 food3.5 service3.5 atmosphere3.0
Kikyo Sushi / 桔梗寿司
Category Sushi
Phone +81 75-231-7361
Address 43 Daimonji-cho Aburakojidori Marutamachi-Sagaru, Nakagyo-ku, Kyoto City, Kyoto Prefecture
Directions The restaurant is 585 meters from subway Marutamachi Station.
Open Hours Lunch: 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Dinner: 5 p.m.-9 p.m.
Reservations Accepted.
Closed Wednesdays and sometimes on Tuesdays.
Price range
Lunch:~ ¥1,000 Dinner:¥3,000 ~ 5,000
Credit cards VISA, MASTER, JCB, AMEX, Diners / Accepted.
Good for Solo, Romantic, With Friends, Families with Children
Overseas Tourist-Friendly
The restaurant is frequented by foreign guests so they are used serving foreigners. Don’t hesitate to enter the restaurant!
Menu Japanese and English.
Lanuages spoken English
Number of seats For 45 people.
Private dining rooms Yes (for 10-20 people). You need to make a reservation.
Non smoking / smoking Nonsmoking.
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