June 10, 2019
If you eat eel in Gion, you should visit there! 10 Selection of absolutely recommended long-established eel restaurant!
Speaking of summer, you can’t miss eel! However, it is also said that late autumn is the eel season, and it is delicious not only in summer but also in all year round. In Gion, Kyoto, there are various restaurant ranging from the ones listed in Michelin Guide to the reasonable ones. It is said that the food culture of eel, which is rarely eaten abroad, goes back to the ancient Japanese literature “Manyoshu”. Please feel the history and culture of Japan at the same time you fill your stomach.
1. Speaking of eel in Kyoto Gion, you must visit here! [Kabocha no Tane]
“Kabocha no Tane” is the home-like eel restaurant which is located in the center of Gion and keeps its own character but removed luxurious atmosphere making people’s hesitation to visit. It uses eel from Mikawa, Aichi Prefecture, and boasts its soft and melting texture. There are various menus also many reasonable ones.
In addition, you can eat the Kyoto traditional home food at the same time, It is said local Maiko and Geiko also stop here. Please visit this restaurant loved by locals. How about having a delicious eel dish here while fully tasting the town of Kyoto Gion?
Name: Kabocha no Tane
Address: Gionmachi Kitagawa 267, Higashiyama-ku, Kyoto-shi, Kyoto
Time: 12:00〜13:00 / 18:00〜22:00
Close: Tuesday (If it is the day before holiday, it will be open.)
Access: 4 minutes walking from Gion Shijo Station
Map: map to Kabocha no Tane
2. If you want to taste the best eel in Gion, [Gion Umenoi]
This is a well-known restaurant open for the one century with the taste of Edo eel that has not changed since its foundation. “Gion Umenoi” is the old-fashioned eel restaurant founded in the Taisho period and has inherited the taste of old days for over 100 years. It was relocated to the natural rich Maruyama Park in the 100th year of its foundation. There are a garden and a tea room in the building made in Machiya style.
Not changed since its foundation, they keep eel, which was carefully selected from Kashihara, Shizuoka Prefecture, overnight in the water of the well. Then they bake it with Bincho charcoal and will taste it with a sweet and elegant secret sauce. We recommend visitors who want to enjoy an authentic taste of eel to go there. Let’s enjoy the taste of Gion!
Name: Gion Umenoi
Address: Inside of Maruyama Park, Gionmachi Kitagawa, Higashiyama-ku, Kyoto-shi, Kyoto
Time: 11:30～13:30 / 17:30～19:30
Access: 15 minutes walking from Gion-shijo Station
Map: map to Gion Umenoi
3. The eel restaurant [Gion Uokeya U] where you can taste the carefully selected ingredients in Gion
“Gion Uokeya U” is the eel restaurant in Gion, which has won an impressive 1 star in the Michelin Guide. “Yagenbori”, the name of a tool that makes medicinal plants powder, was awarded to this restaurant, and to be proud of its name, the chef not only searches for the various ingredients but also cultivates those at his own farm.
Furthermore, this restaurant cares about ordering fresh eel from Setouchi by air transport. Not only the ingredients, but also the vessel is carefully selected according to the season and the food, and those enjoy our eyes. We can have Kanto-style eel which melts in the mouth softly in the restaurant like Gion of Machiya-style. You should eat it at least once in this special restaurant.
Name: Gion Uokeya U
Address: Nishihanami Koji Shijo Kudaru, Gion, Higashiyama-ku, Kyoto-shi, Kyoto
Time: 11:30〜14:00 / 17:00〜21:00
Close: Monday (If Monday is holiday, the next day will be closed.)
Access: 7 minutes walking from Gion Shijo Station
Map: map to Gion Uokeya U
4. An eel dish that has been loved in Gion from a long time ago [Gion Matsuno]
“Seiromushi”, which never got different since its foundation, is the meal you will never know how much delicious it is until you try to eat it! This restaurant name is “Gion Matsuno”. This is restaurant is located in the fourth house east of “Minamiza” known as the birthplace of Kabuki, and you can enjoy the real taste of Kyoto in cozy aromosphere,
Since its foundation, Seiromushi, which has been loved as a specialty from the past to now, is a duo of sweet and fluffy eggs and an eel that melts in the mouth. There are many tourists coming from overseas, and the menu and customer service is available in English. Please try the true taste that many repeaters love.
Name: Gion Matsuno
Address: The forth house east of Shijo Minamiza, Higashiyama-ku, Kyoto-shi, Kyoto
Access: 2 minutes walking from Gion Shijo Station
Map: map to Gion Matsuno
5. Enjoy the taste of eel’s hometown Hamamatsu in Gion at [Unagi Toku]
This is a restaurant, that the main branch is located in Hamamatsu, with a reputation for offering the authentic eel. “Unagi Toku” is located in Takashimaya near Kawaramachi Station, and this is a specialty restaurant of the eel that is about 11 minutes on foot from Karasuma Station. Eel is steamed in Hamamatsu-style, and its soft texture melts in the mouth with a secret less-sweet sauce inherited from the Meiji period. It is not Kansai style, and you can enjoy the taste of home-style eel that may make you lose your words.
There are various types of eel menu such as Unaju, Unagi Gozen, Kabaraki, and Shirayaki. There is a children’s menu too, so even families with children can easily visit. Please enjoy this restaurant
Name: Unagi Toku
Address: 7th Floor of Kyoto Takashimaya, Nishiirima-cho 52, Kawara-machi, Shijo-dori, Shimogyo-ku, Kyoto-shi, Kyoto
Access: 11 minutes walking from Karasuyama Station
Map: map to Unagi Toku
6. A specialty restaurant in Gion where you can enjoy all of the eel [Ajisai no Toyo]
The recommended restaurant “Ajisai no Toyo” in Gion, where you can enjoy a variety of eel dishes from eel bone crackers to eel gozen. Because the river fish specialty restaurant, founded on Meiji period, is located on the first floor, it is perfect for those who want to eat and walk around. The second floor is a townhouse style dining room, with a crispy outside and a fluffy inside, which is unique to Kansai.
There is a rich menu focusing on river fish, and you can enjoy not only eel but also various fish. It’s relatively reasonable, so you can enjoy the Japanese taste without any stress. Please drop by there.
Name: Ajisai no Toyo
Address: 2nd Floor, Higashiuoi-cho 173, Yanaginobanba Higashiiri, Nishiki koji, Chukyo-ku, Kyoto-shi, Kyoto
Time: 11:00～15:00 / 16:30～19:00 (Only Friday, Saturday, and Sunday)
Access: 7 minutes walking from Kawaramachi Station
Map: map to Ajisai no Toyo
7. Eel cuisine [Pontocho Idumoya] to eat while tasting the emotions of Gion
“Pontocho Idumoya” in Gion is popular to taste the harmony of Edomae eel and Kyoto cuisine that has inherited since the Taisho period. This is a delicious Kyoto cuisine restaurant where you can enjoy delicious seasonal dishes with Edomae eel soaked in a secret sauce.
In addition to the convenient location where you can reach quickly by walking from Shijo Dori to Pontocho destination, the wooden summer seat built over the Yodogawa that flows near the Kamogawa and the atmosphere filled with the serenity of the river are particularly popular for foreign travelers. The standard menu such as eel bowl and Unaju is delicious, but I recommend you to take a photograph of Hanaizumo of eel+α before eating it. Welcome to the restaurant that you will want to spend time relaxing and forgetting the time passing!
Name: Pontocho Idumoya
Address: Kashiwayacho173-2, Shijo-noboru, Pontocho-dori, Chukyo-ku, Kyoto-shi, Kyoto
Access: 2 minutes walking from Shijo Station
Map: map to Pontocho Idumoya
8. Excellent eel in the atmosphere of Gion! [Kayukoji Edogawa]
Focusing only on Unagi since the Meiji period! “Kayukoji Edogawa” is a local food restaurant that is loved for generations. Kayukoji is the shortest shopping street in Kyoto where you can reach to Shinkyogoku street from Shijo. The shops here are old-fashioned with a long history of the shops, and this is the eel restaurant often visited by Maiko and Geiko.
Eel is steamed after Shirayaki, and baked by Edo-yaki with the secret sauce. And you can enjoy the mild taste of eel. In addition to the standard menu, there is also a lineup of Omakase course menu including Kyoto food. A little away from the bustle of the downtown area, I recommend you to spend a relaxing time of luxury.
Name: Kayukoji Edogawa
Address: 1st Floor of Harenohi Kayukoji, Nakano-machi, Shijo-noboru, Shinkyogoku, Chukyo-ku, Kyoto-shi, Kyoto
Time: 11:00～14:00 / 17:00～21:00
Access: 3 minutes walking from Kawaramachi Station
Map: map to Kayukoji Edogawa
9. A long-established eel specialty restaurant in Gion! [Kanesho]
This is a long-established restaurant where Emperor visited. “Kanesho” is an eel specialty restaurant in Gion which is popular with Kinshi-don of eel along with fluffy egg on the top. This long-established eel restaurant was established in 1866. The unique cooking method of directly grilling eel cut on the back in Kanto style, they create a soft texture and crisp texture on the surface.
The popular menu, Kinshi-don, has a fluffy egg with the eel on the top of the seasoned rice. In addition, eel tea rice is also delicious. In this small restaurant, they prepare eel after receiving an order. Please drop by here to fulfill your stomach with a relaxing feeling.
Address: Shijo-noboru 2-Tokiwamachi1, Yamato ohji dori, Higashiyama-ku, Kyoto-shi, Kyoto
Access: 2 minutes walking from Gionshijo Station
Map: map to Kanesho
10. Attractive retro looking! [Kyogoku Kaneyo]
“Kyogoku Kaneyo” was founded at the end of the Taisho period. Despite being burned by a fire before the war and the third floor was destroyed, we can feel its strong originality from the two-story retro construction. There are a variety of choices, such as a standard eel bowl, a famous kinshi bowl, raw eel-rolled burdock, a slowly-baked Hachiman roll, an egg-roll wrapped with a mackerel.
If you are a family, there is a children’s bowl for kids. If you visit in the lunchtime of weekdays, there is a reasonable menu named Kaneyo bowl. When visiting Gion, please visit this restaurant!
Name: Kyogoku Kaneyo
Address: Matsugae-cho 456, Higashiiri, Shinkyogoku, Rokkaku-dori, Chukyo-ku, Kyoto-shi, Kyoto
Access: 5 minutes walking from Sanjo Keihan Station
Map: map to Kyogoku Kaneyo
Let’s eat delicious eel in Gion, Kyoto!
What did you think? This time, we introduced 10 recommended eel specialty restaurants that you must go when visiting sightseeing in Gion. As every restaurant is popular places, the taste is the first class! Speaking of Gion in Kyoto, it is a particularly popular spot among tourist spots in Japan. You can enjoy the atmosphere just by taking a walk around the ancient city of Kyoto. Please enjoy Gion!