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RATINGS
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Value
Atmosphere

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PRICE RANGE
US$25 - US$100
CUISINES
Japanese
Special Diets
Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options
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meals, features
Reviews (265)
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Traveller rating
127
32
14
4
7
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LanguageEnglish
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Traveller rating
127
32
14
4
7
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All reviews tempura seafood white fish diners sit fellow diners tatami mats fresh ingredients guide book kaiseki menu food was wonderful small garden from australia set menu michelin star ryokan counter chef
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Reviewed March 20, 2020

A Kyoto institution. Our hotel very kindly helped booked us here for dinner as one of few such places happy to accommodate my wife's serious seafood allergy. They prepared, using separate oil and so on, an entirely separate (and, I'm told, delicious) vegetable-based tempura kaiseki...menu for her. I had the standard seafood, fish and vegetable version. This place has a wonderful history and the atmosphere is truly authentic Kyoto. The intimate counter around the chef only seats 10 or 12 - it was full and had a nice atmosphere. Very limited English is spoken (it is in Japan, after all; you wouldn't expect to find much Japanese spoken in an English restaurant) but enough for the chef to tell you what each item is, and whether an item will be too hot to eat straight away (some of the vegetables retain a lot of heat!). The chef is an expert with tempura, and the result is a series of more or less perfect items. The meal included a 3-part starter of white fish and wasabi leaf, seafood, and vegetable, followed by many courses of tempura (shrimp, eel, fish, scallop, all manner of vegetables), a cleansing dish of vegetables in sour jelly, more courses of tempura, then a choice of rice dish with more tempura and a miso soup. The food was delicious, varied, and plentiful. The service from the lady who looks after the non-tempura dishes and drinks was impeccable, too. After the main event, you are led upstairs (shoes off, please!) to a cosy sort of horigotatsu-type sunken conversation place with a warm hearth and a view of a small garden. Here you are served a dessert of ice cream and fruit with tea while you can have a convivial conversation with your fellow diners. We were also shown the beautiful large hidden garden behind the restaurant where there is also a formal dining space and guestrooms. All in all a really memorable evening.More

Date of visit: March 2020
Helpful?1  
Reviewed January 13, 2020

We stayed at Yoshikawa Inn for 2 nights. Besides being wonderful, our stay included dinner at the Tempura bar one night. It seats about 12 people and was very fun to watch the food being prepared by a top chef. The food was wonderful and...service was deserving of its Michelin star. My husband dropped a chopstick part way thru the meal. How the chef knew it I don't know, but before we knew it, he had a replacement. The chef is quiet, professional, and doesn't interact with the patrons. If you want that, you should go to BeniHana. :-). He is focused on preparing the best food for your evening. He allows your party to focus on the meal and each other, not on theatrics. The tempura was served in courses, and you ate each item fresh from the fryer. Light breading allowed the fresh ingredients to be experienced. Dessert was served in the small and intimate lobby of the Inn, seated around the fire. A perfect Christmas dinner for these travelers from Ohio. We got to know our fellow diners from Australia and so it was a very fun group.More

Date of visit: December 2019
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Reviewed January 5, 2020

We found that this place in the guide book was quite near the hotel, so gave it a try, not believing that such a superb restaurant could be in such a quiet ordinary street. First, we went through the wrong door, to the main restaurant...where booking is essential. No tables left. We were shown to the next door where diners sit round the chef, watching him cook, and I'm glad we did because it was fascinating. We had a beautiful woman in a kimono who spoke a little English serving us and explaining what and how to eat, like which sauces to have with which portions of fish or vegetables. It was such a pleasure, and served in such exquisite little bowls, which kept on coming. Each time the chef would show us before it was cooked. For dessert we were led to a sunken area of tatami mats (so shoes had to be taken off) and we then had Japanese tea with little cakes and fruits whilst being entertained by businessmen who'd had too much sake occasionally passing by from their private dining room. When we left they offered to get a taxi but we said we'd walk. Our waitress stood in the cold dark street watching us until we turned the corner to make sure we weren't lost.More

Date of visit: December 2019
Helpful?1  
Reviewed November 8, 2019

We are staying in the Ritz Carlton which is one of the best in Kyoto. It also has a very plush tempura restaurant. Our travel agent (Audley) booked Yoshikawa for us. We have had many simple and traditional meals in Japan and these have often...been better that more contemporary or posh places but the problem with Yoshikawa is: - The place was empty- we were the only three - The place itself is very run down with no atmosphere - Staff and Chef speak little or no English - Set menu of several courses- we walked out after the tempura and wished we had earlier - they offer a duck alternative if you don't like raw fish but not available as you have to pre-book it. All in all really really poor. The previous night we went to a simple authentic Chinese restaurant in a back ally and it was sublime so some you win some you lose There are definitely better places to go that YoshikawaMore

Date of visit: November 2019
Helpful?1  
Reviewed November 8, 2019

This restaurant has one Michelin star, and it deserves it! For those who are into that sort of thing, the attached ryokan also has three Michelin stars.

Date of visit: November 2019
Helpful?1  
Reviewed October 25, 2019 via mobile

This is a very small restaurant so reservations are essential. We were seated at the small (12 person?) bar and were afforded a good view of the chef hard at work creating a seemingly endless array of small tempura bites both vegetable and fish. After...our main meal we moved to an adjoining tatami mat room for our fruit based desert. The food was delicious and the experience authentic. Highly recommended.More

Date of visit: October 2019
Helpful?2  
Reviewed October 15, 2019

We opted to sit at the counter as we were advised this experience was the best. While it did allow us to watch the chef prepare the meal, and we had our dishes hot and freshly made - the chef himself did not engage with...anyone. His attitude was that he really did not want to, or care about being there. In a small venue - maybe 12-15 seats around the cooking area? - this actually came off as a bit uncomfortable. He didn't even look up or address any guests - we did not even get a greeting or farewell from him. Part of the counter charm should be some kind of interaction. The food was great despite the lack of chef interaction. Portions were generous and we certainly had enough to eat. Another uncomfortable moment was right after we finished our last dish from the pre-set menu we choose - they shuffle you quickly out and seat you in the inn's lobby. This is where they bring you dessert - a small dish of ice cream. Lobby had comfortable seating - but it was in a lobby and you find yourself now sitting with strangers on cushioned benches while you finish your meal. It just all felt a bit off. We would recommend for the food - great tempura. But sadly would not suggest if you are looking for more of a engaged dining experience.More

Date of visit: September 2019
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Reviewed October 5, 2019 via mobile

The quality of the produce and skills of the chefs are fantastic but for the cost, the overall experience lacks a little something for me hence it’s only a four.

Date of visit: September 2019
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Reviewed September 16, 2019 via mobile

Admittedly I asked the hotel to make us a reservation at this restaurant without realising it was set menus. However we elected for the 8000y menu for dinner. It was great to sit at the counter and watch the chef do his magic. The quality...of ingredients was fantastic and the tempura batter was so light. Service was also good. I wasn’t a fan of eating dessert in the lobby area. It was quite chaotic with staff running around and didn’t seem fitting to the rest of the experience.More

Date of visit: September 2019
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Reviewed August 25, 2019

Went there for the tempura lunch, which was superb in quality of ingredients and taste. A lady showed us in and explained each element of the lunch being served and how to combine the various flavours. There was a lovely garden that we could see...whilst we were lunching. Was a brilliant experience.More

Date of visit: August 2019
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Questions & Answers
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lucygoosey168
September 3, 2015|
AnswerShow all 8 answers
Response from Pierre P | Reviewed this property |
We were only 2, we were seated directly. But it's a very small restaurant, so I'd book if I were you, just to be sure.
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Frequently Asked Questions about Tempura Yoshikawa

Tempura Yoshikawa is rated accordingly in the following categories by Tripadvisor travellers:
  • Food: 4.5
  • Service: 4.5
  • Value: 4
  • Atmosphere: 4.5