On my second day of walking around Kyoto, I was ready to give up and pass out in my hotel room when my wife suggested we go out and eat udon. UDON!!! Udon in Kyoto! Really? While udon might not be Kyoto’s specialty,?yet my visit to Okakita udon shop was worth crossing half the city.
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I got a special place in my heart for food market, so I woke up at 5 AM on a grey Sunday morning and drove to Okayama City to try the monthly market held by the riverside right behind the Okayama Prefectural Office. Kyobashi Asa Ichi is held on the first Sunday of the month while the Kurashiki morning market is held on the third.
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Caffe Verdi is a little bit out of the way but you get the distinct feeling when you get there that it’s actually a place for the locals to enjoy a really good cup of coffee. Kyoto is packed with coffee shops and among all these choices, I decided to go for the one that was among the highest ranked on the “tabelog” website.
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Hanbey Fu restaurant is without any doubt the biggest gastronomical surprise I had in Kyoto. Fu or wheat gluten has been used in shojin ryori (traditional vegetarian devotional food) for hundred of years, but Hanbey Fu takes fu to another level of sophistication.
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Arashiyama in the Western part of Kyoto is part tourist hell and part pure beauty. The river, the mountain, the bamboo forest and the amazing Tenryu-ji and its garden makes it a very special place to visit. It is also the place I came to try my first real Kyoto food at Shoraian, a restaurant which specializes in tofu.
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In a town famous for kaiseki and fancy food, Dai-Ichi Asahi ramen is a popular ramen shop with the locals and it’s conveniently located only a few minutes from JR Kyoto station.
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We arrived at Uji station at 10h50 and pretty much sprinted across the street to Nakamura tea shop to find that people were already waiting in line (the shop opens at 11h). In a city famous for tea, the most famous tea shop in town is a hell of a busy place. Is it worth the run? You bet!
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I spotted Shikiko, a new Taiwan restaurant located in Satosho on route 2 between Fukuyama and Kurashiki because its parking is always full. Since I am a sucker for spicy Taiwan food, I drove to Shikiko with great expectations.
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I don’t often go out during the week, but since I took two days off to enjoy a long Golden Week , I decided to go try Tenjin Ramen in Okayama city which is only open during the week for lunch.
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I ended up going back to Cafe Gewa twice in the last few weeks since I wanted to try their coffee made with the shinny Synesso espresso machine.
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Hinata is far away from the tourist area of central Kurashiki, but the trip to the service road of route 2 is worth the effort.
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Cafe d’Esprit is a coffee shop and a coffee roaster which was recommended to me by a fellow Okayama coffee lover.
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