On day 8 of our Japan trip, we left Kyoto for Fujikawaguchiko with a 2 hours stopover at Mishima. My initial eating plan at Touchuuken got burned because I didn’t realize this shop is inside the ticket gate in Mishima Station (although I saw the shop right after we alighted the shinkansen). Meong!!! (Blur blur) I thought we could go in again or maybe there’s another Touchuuken outside the ticket gate. What’s so special about Touchuuken? Well, it’s a standing style soba place where you eat while standing.
Anyway, we ended up eating at Meibutsu Mishima Soba 名物 三島そば which is located at another part of Mishima Station. It’s actually in Izuhakone Railway 伊豆箱根鉄道 (inside Mishima Station) and yet can be accessed from outside of Mishima Station. Meibutsu Mishima Soba is a semi-standing eatery. If you alighted at Izuhakone Railway, there’s only the stand style option but if you’re like us coming from outside of Mishima Station, you have the options of eat standing and also sitting. Guess which one I went for? Read on… hehe
Meibutsu Mishima Soba 名物 三島そば. If you look at the right, there’s a ticket gate. So those at Izuhakone Railway, can only stand at the outside of this shop to have their meal. Of course, they can choose to exit the gate or before going in the gate to have their meal sitting down inside the shop.
It was a wet Sunday morning when we visited Fushimi Inari Taisha in Kyoto on day 7 of our Japan trip. We spent less than 2 hours there and didn’t really explore much due to weather condition and gadget problem (2 persons sharing an umbrella is a no-no especially if you’re traveling). We had our lunch nearby the shrine in one of the many shops that serves kitsune udon called Inafuku 稲福.
Kitsune udon is an udon dish accompanied by aburaage 油揚げ (deep-fried tofu). It can be served in large piece(s) or sliced. Why it’s called kitsune is because it’s a favorite food of the foxes (fox is kitsune in Japanese). Now, you must be wondering what has fox got to do with anything? Well, kitsune are regarded as the messengers of the spirit Inari (which was enshrined in Fushimi Inari Taisha). That’s why it’s a must-try when one visit Fushimi Inari Taisha.
Fake food display outside Inafuku 稲福.
On a cold rainy autumnal Kyoto, one would think people will shy away from any cold treats and thus us, the smart tourist 😅 will get a table as soon as we arrive. But nope. When we reached Kaden Kyoame Gion Koishi 家傳京飴 祇園小石 around 2.55pm after our visit to Yasaka Shrine on day 7, there was a long line ahead. And though I have this thought: “Let’s just go”, I didn’t have the heart to utter it because my sister is a big fan of matcha parfait.
We waited for around 30 minutes, standing most of the times and later sitting (when it’s near our turn). After placing our order, the sweet treats arrived some 16 minutes later. Doesn’t sounds long but I believe most, if not all of the ingredients are supposed to be prepared before hand?
Warabimochi and anmitsu set わらび餅と餡蜜のセット @ 1,070 yen. Both are super delicious especially after adding their famous brown sugar syrup. The brown sugar (kokutō) sourced from Okinawa is unlike anything I’ve tasted before; dreamy!
Prior to this Japan trip, I’ve read plenty about Kyoto Ramen Koji (Alley) 京都拉麺小路. It sounded interesting and so I decided to have our dinner there after coming back from Arashiyama on day 6 of our Japan trip. Kyoto Ramen Koji is situated right inside Kyoto Station (on the 10th floor to be precised) and consists of 9 ramen shops with each offering different regional styles of ramen. You can find the main store of these shops at their respective regions. There’s also a cafe there called Chasen (think matcha parfait).
Here’s the list of the nine ramen shops and their regions:
1. Shirakaba Sansou from Sapporo
2. Touyoko from Niigata
3. Bannai Shokudo from Kita Kata
4. Higashi Ikebukuro Taishoken from Tokyo
5. Toyama Black Men-ya Iroha from Toyama
6. Masutani from Kyoto
7. Araumado from Osaka
8. Ramen Todai from Toku Shima
9. Hakata Ikkousha from Hakata
We visited the Arashiyama area in Kyoto on our day 6 in Japan. As it was during autumn, the mountains of Arashi were drenched in beautiful fall colors. So very pretty! We had a very delicious tofu themed lunch at Oku No Niwa 奥の庭 by Yoshiya 良彌 which is situated in front of Katsura River and near Togetsu Bridge. Tofu is a local specialty of Kyoto and there is no way we would leave Kyoto without sampling some.
We got quite lost when looking for Oku No Niwa. Turns out it was tucked at the back on the ground floor with side left entrance. A large souvenir shop is also located at the ground floor. The first floor housed Yoshiya restaurant which caters for large group. The whole place is packed with tourist and locals and is very busy. There is a large parking lot for cars and tourist buses.
On day 5 (part 1, part 2) of our Japan trip in Kyoto, we wanted to try Inoichi but it was closed. Without a backup plan we roamed the few streets nearby and finally settled on curry rice for dinner at Curry House Coco Ichibanya. Turns out Curry House Coco Ichibanya is a famous curry rice restaurant chain in Japan. We went to the one at Shijo Kawaramachi branch which occupies ground and first floor at a corner lot. It’s a small restaurant but cozy. Locals and tourist like us can be seen eating here.
Very little English were spoken by the crews. Luckily the menu has English dish names printed on it.