Kake Udon Recipe

In Japan the cooler weather calls for deep bowls of hot, steaming noodles. Following is a very simple recipe for a standard “Kake Udon” ie Udon noodles with basic broth (Kakejiru). As with other Japanese noodles such as Soba, Ramen and Somen there are of course many variations on the theme but this traditional broth is […]

Gospel Coffee House

If you are in the vicinity of Kyoto’s Ginkaku-ji (silver pavillion temple…. but  not actually silver unlike the iconic Kinkaku-ji which is famously covered in gold leaf) its worth taking a little wander around the corner to find this gem. On the 2nd floor of a European style building, which looks very much out of […]

Chef Peter Gilmore Does Kyoto (with me!)

“Spending time in Kyoto with Jane gave me a deeper insight into the Japanese culture. The Japanese emphasis on beautiful presentation and how they represent nature and the seasons have been an almost subconscious influence on me. Because of Jane’s experience and network I had greater access to the culture.” Peter Gilmore Executive Chef, Quay Restaurant, […]


Funahashi-ya is a Kyoto institution famous for its Senbei – Japanese rice crackers. And with good reason. They have an excellent range of fine quality savoury and sweet senbei in a beautiful old shop. It is extremely hard to resist popping in for a look each time I walk by. All shapes and sizes, in […]


Toraya, founded in the 16th Century, in one of Kyoto’s most prestigious makers of Wagashi – traditional Japanese confectionery. Now if you don’t know anything about Wagashi – here’s an earlier post about my fascination for the stuff! There are now many stores throughout Japan including 2 tea-rooms in Kyoto and my favourite is the Ichijo store just […]

Comme Chez Michel

Thanks to a recommendation by a well-fed Francophile Japanese friend we recently checked out Comme Chez Michel and were not disappointed. No mucking around just really solid French bistro eats in a charming setting in the centre of Kyoto. With snow fluttering outside it was not a huge leap to imagine we were in a cosy […]

Winter in Kyoto

The good people of ABC Delicious Magazine have kindly allowed me to share the Global Flavours feature story I wrote and photographed for them  a couple of years ago  on Winter in Kyoto.   (although some other clever person took this rare image of this vermillion bridge in the snow) If you like the sound of it you might like to […]


Why it took me so long to get myself through the gates of Shoren-in I’ll never know. I lived in its vicinity on and off since the end of 2009 and it was less than 10 minutes walk from my front door. I’ve walked by it on too many occasions to count when heading out or […]

Sumibi Kushiyaki Torito

Another top notch Yakitori shop in Kyoto town but perhaps a little more upmarket than most. The eatery has a slightly more modern setting than your average Yakitori-ya and they do a few interesting takes on the chook theme.  It is ALWAYS pumping so make a booking or be prepared to wait. And this is […]

Tankuma Kitamise – Kaiseki Cuisine

Tankuma Kitamise Honten is a rather unassuming Kaiseki restaurant. It isn’t the fanciest looking Ryotei in Kyoto but their cuisine is pretty damn fine. I’ve eaten a lot of repetitive, lacklustre Kaiseki and to be honest I was expecting the same as I sat down to begin my meal here so was really happy to […]