Best Sushi in Kyoto: Top 5 Places to Satisfy Your Cravings 2024

Are you passionate about sushi? I share your enthusiasm!

Understanding the effort it takes to discover the best sushi in kyoto, I’ve spent countless hours exploring the best that Kyoto has to offer, just for you!

I’m thrilled to introduce you to the world of authentic and delicious sushi in Kyoto. Whether it’s sushi made from the freshest seafood, unique creations with wagyu beef, or even tofu, there’s something here for every sushi lover.

From luxurious Michelin-starred establishments to budget-friendly conveyor belt places, Kyoto’s sushi scene is vibrant and diverse.

So, why wait? Dive in and let’s explore the top sushi restaurants in Kyoto together! 🙂

Top Sushi Spots in Kyoto

A traditional sushi bar in Kyoto, with a minimalist interior and a chef carefully crafting nigiri and maki rolls behind the counter

Kyoto is a city that boasts of a rich culinary tradition, and sushi is one of its most famous dishes.

As a sushi lover, I have had the pleasure of trying out various sushi spots in Kyoto.

Here are some of my top picks for the best sushi spots in Kyoto:

Famed Sushi Restaurants

A chef expertly prepares fresh sushi at a traditional Kyoto restaurant, surrounded by bamboo and paper lanterns

Kyoto has no shortage of famous sushi restaurants that have been around for decades.

These restaurants are known for their high-quality sushi made with the freshest ingredients. Here are some of my top picks:

  • Sushi Matsudaya is a Michelin 1-star sushi restaurant located in the Gion area. The restaurant is known for its traditional Edo-style sushi, which is made with carefully selected ingredients. The sushi at Sushi Matsudaya is a work of art, and the chefs take great care in preparing each piece.

  • Sushi Rakumi is another famous sushi restaurant in Kyoto. The restaurant is located in the Higashiyama Ward and promises an unforgettable sushi dining experience. The sushi at Sushi Rakumi is made with the freshest ingredients and is served in a cozy and intimate setting.

Hidden Gems

Kyoto is also home to some hidden gems that are not as well-known but offer some of the best sushi in the city.

Here are some of my top picks:

  • Sushi Matsumoto is a Michelin-starred sushi restaurant located in the Gion area. The owner of the restaurant trained in Tokyo and mastered Edo-style sushi, prompting him to open the restaurant in 2005. The sushi at Sushi Matsumoto is made with the freshest ingredients and is served in a cozy and intimate setting.

  • Aoba is a long-established sushi restaurant in Fukuchiyama that has been appreciated by local food connoisseurs for over 40 years. The restaurant serves delicious Japanese a-la-carte dishes and lunch sets, as well as sushi made with the freshest ingredients.

Kyoto has no shortage of sushi spots that offer some of the best sushi in the city. Whether you’re looking for a famous sushi restaurant or a hidden gem, you’re sure to find something that suits your taste buds.

Sushi Dining Experiences

A traditional sushi bar with fresh fish and expert chefs in Kyoto

I can confidently say that Kyoto is one of the best places to indulge in some delicious sushi. The city has a long-standing tradition of serving sushi, and the chefs here take their craft very seriously.

Whether you’re a sushi connoisseur or a curious foodie, Kyoto has something for everyone.

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Conveyor Belt Sushi

If you’re looking for a quick and casual sushi experience, then you should definitely try the conveyor belt sushi restaurants in Kyoto.

One such restaurant is Musashi Sushi, which is known for its delicious and affordable sushi. The restaurant has a wide variety of sushi on offer, and you can simply pick and choose what you like from the conveyor belt.

The sushi is always fresh, and the chefs are constantly replenishing the conveyor belt with new dishes.

Another popular conveyor belt sushi restaurant in Kyoto is Kura Sushi, which has several outlets across the city. The restaurant is known for its innovative dishes and uses state-of-the-art technology to ensure that the sushi is always fresh and delicious.

The prices at Kura Sushi are also very reasonable, making it a great option for budget-conscious travelers.

Michelin-Starred Sushi

For those looking for a more upscale sushi experience, Kyoto has several Michelin-starred sushi restaurants. One such restaurant is Sushi Wakon, which was awarded a 1-star Michelin in the autumn of 2017.

The restaurant is known for its Edomae-style sushi and provides a truly unforgettable dining experience. The prices at Sushi Wakon are on the higher side, but the quality of the sushi and the overall experience make it worth the splurge.

Another Michelin-starred sushi restaurant in Kyoto is Mizai, which has been awarded 2 Michelin stars. The restaurant is known for its exquisite sushi, which is made using the freshest and highest quality ingredients.

The chefs at Mizai are highly skilled and have a deep understanding of the art of sushi-making. The restaurant has a cozy and intimate atmosphere, making it the perfect place for a romantic dinner or a special occasion.

Whether you’re looking for a casual or an upscale sushi experience, Kyoto has something for everyone.

From conveyor belt sushi to Michelin-starred restaurants, the city has a wide variety of options to choose from.

Sushi Etiquette in Kyoto

A serene Kyoto sushi bar with traditional decor and patrons quietly enjoying their meals

As a sushi lover visiting Kyoto, it’s important to know the proper sushi etiquette to fully appreciate the experience.

Here are a few tips to keep in mind:

1. Reservations are a must

Many of the best sushi restaurants in Kyoto are small and intimate, with limited seating. It’s essential to make a reservation in advance to ensure you have a seat.

Most restaurants have websites where you can make a reservation online or you can call ahead to reserve a table.

2. Don’t use too much soy sauce

In Kyoto, sushi chefs take great pride in their craft and carefully prepare each piece of sushi to bring out the natural flavors of the fish.

Using too much soy sauce can overpower the delicate flavors and offend the chef. Instead, use a small amount of soy sauce or try the sushi without any sauce at all.

3. Eat sushi in one bite

To fully appreciate the flavors and textures of the sushi, it’s best to eat each piece in one bite. This also shows respect for the chef’s work and attention to detail.

4. Use chopsticks correctly

Using chopsticks correctly is an important part of Japanese dining etiquette. Hold the chopsticks towards the end, and don’t use them to point or wave around. When not in use, rest the chopsticks on the holder or plate provided.

5. Don’t mix wasabi into soy sauce

In Kyoto, sushi chefs often add just the right amount of wasabi to each piece of sushi. Mixing wasabi into soy sauce can change the balance of flavors and is considered disrespectful to the chef’s work.

By following these simple sushi etiquette tips, you can fully enjoy the experience of dining at some of the best sushi restaurants in Kyoto.

Frequently Asked Questions

Where can I find the best sushi in Kyoto?

Many locals recommend checking out Izuju and Sushi Matsumoto near Gion district.

Are there any budget-friendly sushi places in Kyoto?

Yes, Sushi No Musashi and Chojiro are popular for affordable and delicious sushi.

Should I make a reservation before visiting a top sushi restaurant in Kyoto?

Yes, reservations are highly recommended, especially for well-known spots like Sushi Iwa.

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Let us know, which of the above is your favorite food spot!

Florian Bernhard
Florian Bernhard
Articles: 127

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