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.
Since this place is ever busy, we gave our name and waited for our turn. You can wait here (chairs/sofa available) or you can visit the souvenir shop briefly. We arrived around 12.20pm and waited about 20 minutes.
The atmosphere in Oku No Niwa is pretty relaxing. We sat at a long table which I believe is made from cypress. Oku No Niwa is a halal certified restaurant and therefore is Muslim friendly. The server in red is Muslim and can speak English fluently. I felt like speaking to my own Malaysian friend.
Food arrived in about 10 minutes later.
Oboro tofu set menu おぼろ豆腐 御膳 @ 1,620 yen. This is the no. 1 most ordered meal. Consist of (clockwise from bottom left): teriyaki oboro tofu, seasonal obanzai, Kyoto pickles, suimono お吸物 (clear soup), matcha udon with onsen tamago and oboro tofu. A very fulfilling and hearty meal.
Fuwa fuwa (fluffy) tofu udon ふわふわお豆腐 うどん @ 980 yen. Consist of perfectly cooked udon in super delicious soy milk dashi broth with shrimp tempura, vegetables, deep fried tofu sheets and kamaboko (fish cake).
The udon is crazily good. It was so springy/bouncy and fresh. The soy milk broth reminded me of the Chinese’s fu chuk yee mai (dried beancurd with barley dessert). It’s sweet, salty and very savory. I can’t help but kept sipping the broth.
良彌 奥の庭 Yoshiya Oku No Niwa
31 Sagatenryuji Tsukurimichicho
Opening time: 11am-5pm, daily
Nearest station: Arashiyama Station (Randen Arashiyama line), Arashiyama Station (Hankyu Arashiyama line) or JR Saga Arashiyama Station