Popular yakitori shops in Kyoto. It is part of regular routine for Japanese office workers to go for “beer” and “yakitori” after work! 6 yakitori shops favored by local students and working individuals.
Speaking of drink culture and office workers, you would think of drinking party. Japanese people often go to izakaya (or a Japanese style bar) with their colleagues or superiors to understand each other better through casual communication.
Such a “drinking party” is part of unique Japanese culture. Places often used for it are yakitori restaurants.
It can be said that beer and yakitori are representatives of how office workers spend time after work. How about you experience an actual life of Japanese office workers through their standard items, beer and yakitori?
“Sumibi-kushiyaki Torito” which is popular among local office workers has three shops within Kyoto City. Their kushiyaki (or broiled chicken on the skewer), each of which is broiled carefully over Binchotan charcoal, is juicy inside and crisp outside. Once you eat it, you would be addicted to it.
One reason of the popularity is because you can eat rare parts of young chicken and Kyo-hinedori, such as tsunagi (the main artery between the liver and heart), the testis, and pieces of meat inside the pelvis called sori. You can seldom find them at other kushiyaki shops.
The appearance of the shop is very Japanese with relaxing atmosphere. If you are eating at the counter in front of the grill, presence of the grill where cooking is going on and aromatic Binchotan charcoal smell arouse your interest and sharpen your appetite.
|Name of the shop||Sumibi-kushiyaki Torito Kawaramachi Sanjo Shop|
|Address||1F Erize Bldg. 534-6 Kawara-machi-dori Sanjo-agaru Ebisu-cho, Nakagyo-ku, Kyoto-shi, Kyoto-fu|
|Payment||Cash, credit cards, smartphones|
At “sumiyaki Akari” you can enjoy a variety of chicken dishes includes yakitori, otsukuri (or raw meat), fried dishes, and smoked dishes. The most popular menu is yakitori. Selected chicken meat of female Tankai-jidori (a breed of chicken) featured by slightly sweet fat is carefully broiled over Binchotan charcoal fire.
Since its texture and taste vary depending on the part, you would understand chicken meat is not that simple. Drink you should enjoy with yakitori is wine.
From the list showing a variety of wine, you can choose the one you like. For couples or two persons, counter seats on the first floor is recommended. Tables by the wellhole on the second floor are relaxing and good for two or more people. Quiet and relaxing space there is just right to heal the fatigue from traveling.
|Name of the restaurant||sumiyaki Akari|
|Address||2-1 Teramachi-dori Marutamachi-sagaru Gyoganji-monzen-cho, Nakagyo-ku, Kyoto-shi, Kyoto-fu|
|Payment||Cash, credit cards, Smartphones|
The restaurant building of Kushikura is actually a century-old Kyo-machiya showing a unique atmosphere of Kyoto. Their yakitori is slowly boiled over Binchotan charcoal fire. This simple cooking method draws umami and body originally contained in the ingredients.
As for sumibi-yaki (or charcoal grilling), other than their vaunted yakitori made with Nanbudori (a breed of chicken), skewered-Kyo-Yasai (or vegetables produced in Kyoto) is highly recommended. Those vegetables are widely used in obanzai (traditional Kyoto-style home cooking), familiarly known as commoner’s dishes. “Kushikura Main Restaurant” is certified as “a restaurant offering seasonal Kyo-Yasai.”
Among their lunch menus, there is “Tori no hitsumabushi” which you cannot find in other restaurants. Since you can enjoy a few different tastes within one donburi bowl, it is a must item.
|Name of the restaurant||Kushikura Main Restaurant|
|Address||584 Takakura-dori Oike-agaru Hiiragi-cho, Nakagyo-ku, Kyoto-shi, Kyoto-fu|
|Business Hours||Lunch AM11:30-PM2:30 (L.O. PM2:00)
Dinner PM5:00-PM10:30 (L.O. PM9:45)
|Closed||The Year-end and New Year holidays|
|Payment||Cash, Credit cards|
Located on the narrow back alley, “Chabuya” is a popular yakitori shop so that you must make a reservation. Their delicious kushiyaki receives highest praise of Japanese people. “Jikasei-tsukune (or original chicken meatloaf)” is especially popular.
As it contains minced gristle, it is crunchy in texture. Eating it with runny egg yolk is nice and refreshing carbonated alcoholic drink, such as chuhai (or while liquor highball) and beer, goes well with it.
As for alcoholic drink, chuhai with whole fresh fruits such as strawberry, kiwi or Hyuganatsu in it is popular. The restaurant is bustled with customers even on weekdays. Therefore, it’s better to make a reservation in advance.
|Name of the restaurant||Sumibi Yakitori Chabuya|
|Address||310-3 Nishikikoji-dori Muromachi Nishikikoji higashi-iru Uradeyama-cho, Nakagyo-ku, Kyoto-shi, Kyoto-fu|
|Payment||Cash, Credit cards|
At Torijiro, the flat rate system is employed and every item is at the price of 270 yen, so that, you to enjoy a variety of izakaya (or Japanese style bar) dishes including nibbles for drink, fried dishes and rice dishes as well as famous yakitori. Since everything is reasonable, it is popular among office workers and university students as a restaurant for daily use.
Big size yakitori called “Jiro-yaki” is a highly recommended famous dish which weight is 90 gram and the length 21 cm. It is so big that you cannot believe it is only 270 yen. You can choose the flavor from those four, i.e. simple salt, sweet and spicy sauce, garlic, and hot miso. Moreover, even with a la carte menu, you can order ‘all you can drink’ within a limited period. Choices of drink differ, depending on the price. But, anyway, there are more than 50 kinds of drink, and it is highly favored by alcohol loving Japanese people.
|Name of the restaurant||Torijiro Shijo Kiyamachi Shop|
|Address||5F GOURMONDE Bldg. 95 Shijo-dori Kobashinishi-iru Shin-cho, Shimogyo-ku, Kyoto-shi, Kyoto-fu|
|Business Hours||PM5:00-AM5:00 (L.O AM4:00)|
|Payment||Cash, Credit cards, Smartphones|
All you can eat and drink at “Chikichiki-chicken” serves a variety of dishes including easy and simple quick dishes, deep fries as well as their vaunted kushiyaki with their special secret sauce and natural salt.
It is either for the period of two hours or three, and you can order whatever you like from the menu having approximately 230 dishes. The system called doctor fry is employed for their deep-fry cooking to decrease the calories. So, you can eat deep-fried dishes healthily without worrying calories. You can order them as a la carte dishes as well. They are all at 300 yen. It is popular among office workers and university students since they can eat and drink a lot without worrying the budget.
|Name of the shop||Yakitori Tabe-nomi-hodai Chikichiki-chicken|
|Address||6F Kyoto Aijibiru Kawaramachi Bldg. 238 Kawaramachi-dori Sanjo-sagaru Yamazaki-cho, Nakagyo-ku, Kyoto-shi, Kyoto-fu|
（FOOD L.O. 23:00 DRINK L.O. 23:00）
|Payment||Cash, Credit cards, Smartphones|
Foreign tourists who has already been to all the famous tourist attractions in Kyoto are interested to come in touch with the everyday life of Japanese people. Beer and kushiyaki after work is the best reward for Japanese office workers. You would be able to see the happy faces of those office workers at those restaurants.
*The information on this page is as of April 2020.