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Kaiseki-ryori dinners in Kyoto

  • Kyoto, Kansai, Japan

  • Bucket List Experience

Last updated: 19 April, 2024

The succession of artistically presented dishes that comprise a kaiseki-ryori dinner has come to represent the pinnacle of Japanese cuisine.

Featuring anywhere up to 12 fixed courses that focus on in-season produce, kaiseki will include some familiar elements, with sashimi early in the dinner, delicate tempura later, and maybe a few mouthfuls of wagyu as a centrepiece. The rest, however, can be wonderfully indecipherable.

Being such an exalted cuisine, kaiseki dinners don’t come cheap – expect to pay at least £100 a head. Or, go for lunch, when many restaurants offer taster sets at a fraction of the price.

Just reserve well ahead – even though Japan has plenty of kaiseki restaurants, they always book up quickly.

They are often served at ryokans (traditional Japanese inns). For a real flavour of traditional Japan, book in for a night at one, and tick off both bucket list experiences at once.

Who to go with: tour operators

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Gion Karyo

  • Kyoto, Kansai, Japan

Kaiseki fish

Experience

The 7-course lunch option at this restaurant in Gion is an excellent way to try kaiseki without breaking the bank.

Adult price 30

Good for age: 18+

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Gion Nanba

  • Kyoto, Kansai, Japan

Kaiseki platter

Experience

Comfortable serving English diners, this restaurant in Gion serves classic kaiseki in tatami mat rooms or at counter seats looking into the kitchen.

Adult price 7

Good for age: 18+

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Kikunoi

  • Kyoto, Kansai, Japan

Kaiseki platter

Experience

A 3-star Michelin restaurant near Maruyama Park where kaiseki is taken in private tatami rooms overlooking small bamboo gardens.

Adult price 90

Good for age: 18+

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Hiiragiya Ryokan

  • Kyoto, Kansai, Japan

  • Official star rating:

Traditional bedding in ryokan

Place to Stay

Indulge in luxury the authentic Japanese way at this 200-year-old ryokan in the heart of Kyoto that ticks all the traditional boxes. The price includes a 12-course kaiseki-ryori dinner.

Average £200

Extra beds

Pool

2+ bedrooms

Beach

Kids menu

Fitness center

Kids club

Logistics

Price from: £100
Minimum age: Any
Age suitable: 18+
When: All year around
Duration: 3-4 hours

Who to go with: organised tours

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Our selection of the best Viator tours of this attraction or activity

Kyoto Evening Gion Food Tour Including Kaiseki Dinner

  • Kyoto

Kyoto Evening Gion Food Tour Including Kaiseki Dinner

Viator

Stroll through the streets amongst the many passersby to fully appreciate and feel the life of the city. Enter Gion, the home of many geisha and traditional tea houses. Enjoy the most unforgettable Kaiseki meal of your life Kyoto is a magical place. Visitors can be transported back in time to Japan’s historical past. Starting near the famous Yasaka Shrine you will stroll with your guide along the local streets of Gion.

Price $296

Min age 0

Rating 4.93 / 5 [48 ratings]

Tour supplied by:

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Destination guides

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Destination guides including or relevant to this experience

Kyoto

  • Kansai, Japan

Geisha woman with white face paint

Destination guide

Ancient temples and shrines, sublime cuisine, manicured gardens, colourful geishas and living history in spades – Kyoto is traditional Japan at its best.