Generally, bread takes about 3 hours for fermentation in the production process, but the bread served at Narara Café takes an incredible 20 hours to complete fermentation! This is because their bread uses only selected ingredients, such as Japanese flour, sugar, salt and natural yeast. The long hours of fermentation enhance the true taste of each ingredient. Try their bread simply as toast with butter, honey or one of their surprising toppings; Nara-zuke pickles, the flavorful unique pickles of Nara.
Toast: 150 yen / Honey toast: 200 yen / Nara-zuke pickles toast: 350 yen / Vegetable & cheese sandwich: 400 yen / Seasonal vegetable fondue: 1,000 yen
Tel: 0742-23-8770 / 38 Higashi Terabayashi-cho, Nara, in the Naramachi Center Bldg. / Open: 9:00-18:00 (L.O.17:30) / Closed: Mon.
TEN. TEN. CAFE
(Central Nara/ Waffle & café)
All handmade and homemade – Fluffy and delicious waffles
Outside is crispy and inside is fluffy - TEN. TEN. CAFE specializes in delicious waffles. They select the finest ingredients for their best waffles, from the flour, egg, and milk to butter. Besides, they even make their own jam sauces! For sweet lovers, choose one of their sweet waffles topped with homemade vanilla gelato using fresh vanilla beans from Madagascar. Another recommendation is their Waffle Benedict which comes with melting half-boiled eggs and thick slices of bacon – Absolutely delicious and original.
Waffle Benedict: 1,480 yen / Fruit garden: 1,280 yen / Caramel & honey: 580 yen / Maple & butter cream: 650 yen / Vegetable sandwich: 780 yen / Coffee: From 430 yen / Beer: 550 yen
Tel: 0742-26-0011 / 16 Kasugano-cho, Nara, in the Yume-Kaze Plaza / Open: 11:00-17:30 (L.O. 17:00) / Closed: Tues. and irregularly on other days / http://ten10cafe.com/
Kamoshi Bar Inishie Nagaya
(Central Nara/ Bar)
Original seasonal dishes filled with the chef’s heart
If you are a traveler who wishes to spend time in a very local place which is not mentioned in a major guidebook, Inishie Nagaya is the place to go. This cozy bar is located on an off the beaten track lane and upon entry, a unique world blending nostalgic Japanese with a stylish bar awaits you. They have a wide range of Nara’s locally brewed sake, from fruity to dry, as well as a variety of craft beers from Japan and overseas. Especially, this is the only place in Nara where people can enjoy the famous “Yona Yona Real Ale” from Nagano on tap!
Yona Yona Real Ale: 1 pint 945 yen, half pint 525 yen / Craft beer (canned): 630-840 yen / Glass wine: 630-840 yen / Cover charge: 315 yen
Tel: 0742-27-2830 / 18-5 Minami-ichi-cho, Nara / Open: 19:00-3:00 (or until late occasionally)
Closed: Sun. and irregularly on other days
(Central Nara/ Wine shop & wine bar)
Wrap up your day in Nara with a glass of wine
“Flavorful, tasteful and natural” and “value-for-money wine for everyday’s table.” The owner of PICOLÉ selects wines based on these concepts with his eyes and taste buds. Sparkling, white and red... Select a single bottle and savor it or try several varieties by the glass to compare the tastes (there are regularly about 12 kinds of wine to choose from for glass wine). Tell the master your favorite flavor and budget and he will serve the perfect choice for each customer. They also sell bottles of wine in their bar so if you wish, you can purchase your favorite!
Glass wine: 580-980 yen / Bottle wine: 3,800-7,000 yen / Assorted cheese: 880 yen / Assorted raw ham: 980 yen / European coffee: 430 yen
Tel: 0742-26-2455 / 3F of Alte-kan Bldg., 5 Konishi-cho, Nara / Open: 18:00- around 24:00
(Central Nara/ Yamato pork cuisine & café)
Tender and juicy Nara’s Yamato pork
POKU POKU specializes in Yamato pork (Nara’s locally grown pig) dishes. Yamato pork tastes lighter than other pork kinds due to its quality fat. Even if a diner chooses their large pork cutlet, it won’t cause a heavy stomach feeling. Crispy pork cutlet must be complimented with natural salt from Bretagne (France) which enhances the taste of the pork itself. Beside pork cutlet, grilled pork with sweet soy sauce ‘and garlic is another must-try at POKU POKU. They offer a lunch menu throughout the opening hours (i.e. late lunch is OK!).
Tonkatsu or Tonteki Set (Yamato pork cutlet or steak, special soy milk, salad, rice, soup, seasonal vegetable dish): 1,400-2,000 yen / Curry and rice with Yamato pork cutlet: 1,200 yen
Tel: 0742-31-2537 / 23 Shonami-cho, Nara, near the Naramachi Joho-kan Information Center / Open: 11:00-20:00 / Closed: Tues.
(Central Nara/ Yakitori BBQ & hotpot dish)
Yakitori BBQ & hotpot dishes of Japanese chicken
Yakitori, one of everyone’s favorite dishes in Japan, is a kind of Japanese chicken BBQ. Small pieces of chicken are skewered on a thin skewer and grilled with salt and sweet soy sauce. Kaminarimon uses only Japanese chicken for their dishes. Their broiled chicken leg is highly recommended. Chicken meat attains a fine texture yet remains juicy after broiling in an intense fire at over 800 C. Their hotpot dish is also popular. Nara’s local chicken and vegetables are cooked together in a golden soup extracted from chicken bone.
Yakitori chicken BBQ: From 150 yen/skewer / Broiled chicken leg: 800 yen / Hotpot (salt-base soup; with udon noodles): 1,680 yen / A la carte: From 280 yen
Tel: 050-5798-8345 / 2F of Maeda Bldg., 8 Higashimuki Naka-machi, Nara
Open everyday: 17:00-24:00 (L.O.23:00)
(Central Nara/ Traditional Japanese)
Original kaiseki Japanese cuisine all using Nara’s specialties
EN’s dishes are all about Nara’s delicacies. Even if a diner is well familiar with Japanese dishes, one can’t help being surprised by their unique and original dishes. Their unique creations utilize some of the best of Nara’s specialties including somen (super thin flour noodle), plum, persimmon and fig as well as totally original dishes like tofu pickled in miso (salty soy bean paste), sake lee tempura and rice porridge cooked with brown tea (chagayu). The chef decides the menu of the day depending on what he feels is the best available selection.
Lunch: Chagayu Tea Porridge set: 2,000 yen / Nara Zanmai set: 3,150 yen
Dinner: Nara no Zen: 3,150 yen / Mini Kaiseki course: 5,250 yen
*Vegetarian arrangement is available; Please call in advance.
Tel: 0742-22-1018 / 2F of Mikado Bldg., 38 Shimomikado-cho, Nara / Open: 11:30-14:00, 17:00-21:00 / Closed: Irregularly on Thurs.
(Central Nara/ Original vegetarian cuisine)
Healthy delicacies of Japan without meat and fish
Take a stroll and leave the central area near the station to discover this quiet area called Takabatake. With Mount Wakakusa as the backdrop and a Japanese-style garden in front, this Japanese style café & restaurant offers a relaxing dining experience. Their changed monthly lunch courses focuses on fresh vegetables and are full of original creations. Minimum amounts of oil and no meat or fish are used in their healthy and satisfying dishes. Assorted homemade desserts are also a must-try!
Lunch course (reservation required): 2,500 yen, 2,800 yen (with selection of assorted desserts), 3,000 yen (with fried dish and selection of assorted desserts) / Sweet set (assorted homemade desserts): 800 yen / Curry & dessert set: 1500 yen / Coffee/tea: 400 yen
Shimazu offers various “tastes of Japan” using seasonal specialties. Reasonably priced lunch sets (Kuzu Gozen, Higoto set, etc.) and mini or full Kaiseki course menu items are recommended for foreign diners as these sets include tempura, sashimi, seasonal vegetable dishes and every other Japanese taste! A wide range of Nara’s locally brewed sake is also available offering diners a great chance to compare some of them. As Shimazu is located on the second floor, guests can enjoy a superb view of Mount Wakakusa from any seat in the restaurant.
Lunch time: Shikisai-zen Set: 1,500 yen / Higoto set: 2,800 yen, Yume-Kaze Kaiseki course: 3,800 yen / Dinner time: Yume-Kaze Kaiseki course: 3,800 yen / Mini kaiseki course: 4,500 yen
Across from Nara National Museum, a 15-min. walk from Kintetsu Nara Sta. (in the Yume-Kaze Plaza) / Open: 11:00-15:00 (L.O.: 14:30), 16:30-21:00 (L.O.: 21:00) / Closed: irregularly (please enguire)
(Central Nara/ Original fusion cuisine )
Original menu of fresh vegetables and meat from Nara
As its name suggests, Nara Kitchen offers a variety of fusion cuisine including Japanese, Italian, French and their original tastes, all using ingredients from Nara. Seasonal fresh vegetables are delivered directly from the farms and transformed into healthy and delicious salads, pizzas and pastas. Yamato Pork is succulent pork raised in Nara which is good to enjoy grilled. Their lunch set is reasonably priced yet full of taste as it includes a main dish (changed daily), soup and buffet style salad (hot and cold dishes). Also check their list of Nara’s locally brewed sake and plum wine!
Steamed vegetable salad (Bagna càuda; a warm dip made with garlic, anchovies, olive oil): 650 yen / Grilled Yamato pork steak: 980 yen / Yamato vegetable pizza: 750 yen / Nara’s locally brewed sake & plum wine: from 580 yen
Lunch set of the day: 1,000 yen
Tel: 0742-24-0055 / 1F of Kyo Roman Bldg., 6-4 Aburasaka Chiho-cho, Nara / Open: 11:00-24:00 (L.O. 23:00) / www.life-food.jp/narakitchen/
(Central Nara/ Original fusion cuisine )
Original seasonal dishes filled with the chef’s heart
“Try Nara’s taste while you stay in Nara.” Mr. Shibata, the owner and chef of Kagetsu puts his wish into his dishes, which is an original fusion of French, Italian and of course, Japanese recipes. He exhibits his cooking skills and sensitive talent using Nara’s fresh vegetables and seasonal fish. They have a wide selection of Nara’s locally brewed sake. If diners are unsure of which sake to select they can try the tasting set (3 kinds of sake + appetizer). Discover the delicate sensitivity of Japan and the chef’s hospitality in Kagetsu’s dishes.
Lunch Shokado bento lunch set: 1,500 yen (weekday only) / Chef’s recommended dinner set: 2,000 yen / Dinner course: 3,500 yen / Nara’s locally brewed sake: from 650 yen / 3 kinds of Nara sake and appetizer: 1,500 yen
Tel: 0742-22-1018 / 28-1 Shimomikado-cho, Nara / Open: 11:30-14:00 (L.O.), until 15:00 on Sat., Sun., national holiday, 17:30-24:00 (L.O.), until 23:00 on Sat., Sun., national holiday / Closed: irregularly
Japanese cuisine OBANA
(Central Nara/ Traditional Japanese )
Seasonal and fresh vegetables in traditional Japanese cuisine
Obana is a fine Japanese restaurant located in Hotel Sunroute Nara. Classical Japanese atmosphere and modern sense of beauty are perfectly combined, and let diners enjoy their meal being relaxed.Their dishes are changed monthly and are full of seasonal ingredients including Nara’s locally grown vegetables. The lunch time Obana set is very popular for the price and dishes (Kaiseki course including a small hotpot, home-made dessert, etc.). Visitors who use only the restaurant (without staying in the hotel) are of course very welcome.
Obana set (lunch): 3,900 yen / Other lunch menus: from 2,900 yen / Kaiseki course (dinner): from 5,500 yen
Kuriya is a typical Japanese izakaya style bar. Kuriya offers a wide range of Nara’s locally brewed sake and shochu as well as Nara’s delicious meat, like Yamato pork and beef. Most recommended is the Hoba Miso-yaki: Yamato pork, Yamato beef or Tamba chicken and vegetables flavored with miso (soy bean seasoning) are wrapped in a large leaf and steamed. The scent of the leaf and juicy meat match perfectly. They are open until 2:00 in the morning, offering a perfect hidden place for diners who wish to enjoy Nara into the late hours.
Hoba Miso-yaki (Tamba chicken, Yamato pork or Yamato beef): from 880 yen
Assorted yakitori grilled Tamba chicken (5 kinds): 850 yen / Nara’s sake & shochu: from 480 yen / *A small appetizer (380 yen) will be served to each person as the table charge.
Tel: 0742-24-3738 / 2F of Japan du Bldg., 2-1 Konishi-cho, Nara / Open: 17:00-2:00 (L.O. 1:30) / Closed: Tues.
(Central Nara/ Japanese confectionery )
Simplest form of traditional Japanese confectionery
Kashiya’s Japanese confectioneries are imbued with the earnest enthusiasm of the owner. His philosophy is to serve the simplest confectionaries that retain the unadulterated taste of the ingredients. Not only the confectionery, but Kashiya itself is full of artistic artifacts as they use precious wares, utensils and decorations in the store, some of which are over several hundred years old. Summer recommendation is their fluffy shaved ice with sweet green tea syrup made from pure clear ice.
Confectionery and green tea: 840 yen (1 piece of confectionery and a bowl of tea) / Shaved ice: 1,050 yen / Nama-gashi unbaked confectionery: from 263 yen / Hi-gashi baked confectionery: from 126 yen
PAO offers a lunch and café menu using ingredients grown in or nearby Nara. One of the special ingredients is black rice which is said to have been eaten in Nara since ancient times. PAO grows black rice in their own field for their menu. They receive seasonal vegetables directly from the famers so that they are always fresh. Unique “Black curry & rice” includes simmered beef and onion, along with black sesame paste as the key to this totally “black” curry. Adding a pork cutlet will satisfy big eaters! For café time, try their home-roasted coffee or café latte with homemade cakes.
Black rice lunch set: 980 yen (4 kinds of dishes, salad, soup, rice) / Black curry & rice: 900 yen / Black curry & rice with deep-fried pork cutlet: 1,000 yen / Uji matcha green tea latte: 730 yen / Home-roasted coffee: 450 yen
Savor top quality Japanese beef in a stylish restaurant
Kizuna is a stylish yakiniku Japanese-style barbeque restaurant using only extra-fine quality Japanese beef (black cattle) from all of Japan’s principal farms. The tender and savory taste of this top quality Japanese beef is internationally famous and satisfies gourmets all around the world. They select the best part of the beef every day, if diners want to try the best of the day, just order the Assorted Beef of the Day which comes with several kinds of beef on one plate. Their reasonably-priced, yet large serving and quality lunch sets are also highly recommended.
Assorted beef of the day: 1,780-2,480 yen / Assorted 4 beef flavored with salt: 1,480 yen / Extra fine Tsurami (cheek meat): 980 yen / Extra fine beef yakiniku lunch set: 980 yen (5 servings a day only; with drink, salad, rice, soup and dessert)
Tel: 0742-22-1129 / 4 Minamiichi-cho, Nara (1F of Uehata Bldg.) / Open: 11:00-15:00 (L.O. 14:00), 17:00-23:00 (L.O. 22:00) / Closed: Mon. (open if Mon. is a national holiday)
(Central Nara/ Kamameshi rice & Japanese dish )
Warm yourself up with steaming Kamameshi rice & noodle
Kanoko is located in the tranquil Takabatake area having Mount Takamado on the backdrop. Kanoko's most recommended menu item is Kamameshi, a rice with toppings (chicken, pork, scallop, squid, etc.) cooked in an iron pot by portion. They start to cook Kamameshi after they have an order, so every pot is steaming hot! A set menu of Kamameshi and some pieces of tempura is popular among foreign tourists. Another good choice is a set menu of rice bowl (choose one from 11 kinds of toppings) and extra-thin noodle (somen) in soup.
Kamameshi Gozen set (Kamameshi, tempura, side dishes, soup, etc.): 2,600 yen / Kamameshi: 1,100 yen / Rice bowl topped with tempura and somen noodle in soup: 900 yen / Beer (bottle): 500 yen
Tel: 0742-27-5036 / 1307-1 Takabatake-cho, Nara / Open: 11:00-15:00 (reservation only for dinner time) / Closed: Thurs.
(Central Nara/ Wine bar)
Rokuen is a cozy, relaxing ambient wine bar which used to be an old Japanese style house. Eight kinds of glass wines and about 30 kinds of bottle wines from around the world will welcome the guests. If people wonder which wine to choose, Rokuen's sommelière will select the best wine of the day depending on the preference, weather and season. Her love and knowledge for wine will let you experience a pleasant night in Nara with a glass. Light meals going well with wine are available.
Glass wine: from 500 yen / Bottle wine: from 5,600 yen / Beer: 500 yen /
Cheese: 400 yen / Prosciutto (raw ham): 500 yen
ROCOCO is a coffee specialty shop which uses only "specialty coffee," which is strictly assessed coffee beans in terms of production region, freshness, traceability, etc. To enhance the aroma and taste to the best, beans are roasted with ROCOCO's original method and every cup of coffee is carefully dripped. Recommended are ROCOCO's original blended coffee, espresso and cappuccino. Set menu with Panini and sandwich for lunch and with homemade cake for afternoon tea is a good choice. They open from 8:00, so why not plan your day in Nara with ROCOCO's delicious coffee?
Rococo blend coffee: 420 yen / Cappuccino: 450 yen / Panini / Sandwich set: 750 yen (11:00-14:00) / Cake set: 750 yen *Please order at least one item per person; Order toast and pound cake with a drink.
Romantic and stylish ambience for a dining & bar experience
Diners can enjoy a wide variety of dishes from French, Italian and Spanish at fis – French salad, paella, pasta, and more. Every dish is delicious yet very reasonably priced. Their carbonara using good quality sperm egg and thick, juicy Nara's Yamato port steak are must-try! They offer several dishes for lunch diners. In the evening, the entrance and the inside of the restaurant is romantically lighted which is perfect to have the last glass of drink of the day. Counter seat is recommended for the bar use. Vegetarian are welcome.
Pasta lunch set: 780 yen / Chef's recommended lunch of t he day: 1,080 yen / Tapas (Spanish appetizer): from 380 yen / Beef loin streak (200g): 1,580 yen
Tel: 0742-93-8777 / 29-1 Konishi-cho, Nara Open: Lunch: 11:00-15:00 (L.O. 14:30), until 17:00 (L.O. 16:30) on Sat., Sun., national holidays, dinner: 17:00-23:30 (L.O. 23:00)
(Central Nara/ Nara's chicken dish & sake )
Best taste of Nara's specialty chicken & sake
Yamato Nikudori is Nara's locally grown chicken. Yatagarasu uses only Yamato Nikudori and offers a wide range of chicken dishes. They broil a big piece of chicken over intense charcoal fire which can keep taste of chicken inside. Chicken balls, vegetables and other skewered items are also available. With your meal, don't forget to try one of their excellent selections of sake. Yatagarasu directly buys sake from brewery in Yoshino (village in southern Nara) and often has very rare kind of sake that is never available in general market. Counter seat is recommended as diners can enjoy watching dynamic cooking scenes at the front.
Broiled chicken thigh: 630 yen / Egg roll: 500 yen / Fried chicken: 590 yen / Homemade tofu: 440 yen / Rice bowl with teriyaki chicken: 520 yen
Beef, chicken, pork and vegetables: the best of Nara's tastes
Just a few minutes walk from JR Nara Station, Yamato-an offers fresh and delicious dishes ranging from the best fish & seafood of the day straight from the port to Nara's specialties including Yamato (Nara) beef, Yamato chicken and Yamato pork. The chef's cooking skill which varies from very simple to artful cooking techniques, releases the unique flavors of the meat and seasonal vegetables. Typical Japanese dishes like tempura and sashimi, along with originals, such as the uniquely arranged "roasted tea rice porridge," allows diners to find satisfaction by trying a variety of Yamato-an's delicious treats.
Simmered Yamato pork: 787 yen / Grilled Yamato chicken with black pepper: 1,197 yen / Yamato-cha green tea ice cream: 472 yen / Handmade tofu: 577 yen / Crispy white radish and burdock salad: 714 yen
Try two Nara's specialties: Kakinoha sushi & green tea noodle
Kasuga Jaya is a small eatery on the main approach of Todai-ji Temple. Kakinoha sushi is one of Nara's specialties: a piece of vinegared rice topped with a sliced fish is wrapped with a persimmon leaf. Recommended menu item is a set of udon noodle and Kakinoha sushi. Particularly, unique "green" noodle is a must-try. Powdered Nara's local green tea (Yamato-cha) and healthy leaf vegetable are kneaded into the noodle. Kakinoha sushi is OK to take out, so good choice for a picnic lunch outside.
Kakinoha sushi set: 850 yen / Yamato-cha green tea noodle set: 850 yen /
Warabi-mochi sweet dumpling and matcha green tea: 650 yen
Walk along the narrow lane by Sarusawa Pond and a vivid blue door in a white wall will greet you. Bambuno offers French and Italian style dishes overflowing with vegetables and Nara's taste. Most of the vegetables are grown by the owner & chef's family, and are all fresh and safe. Their cream pasta with bacon and seasonal vegetables is very popular among foreign diners. Pizza margherita is another recommendation. A reasonably priced lunch set is available (choose pasta or pizza, with soup, bread and drink). They regularly offer about 10 kinds of wine, so choose one that goes best with your meal.
Seasonal vegetables with bagna càuda sauce (hot sauce of garlic & anchovy): 1,000 yen / Bacon and seasonal vegetables cream pasta: 950 yen / Pizza Margherita (fresh tomato, mozzarella, basil): 750 yen
Wakakusa signifies a lush green color, representing the color of Mt. Wakakusa that forms the backdrop of Nara city. The same as the restaurant's name, their most popular menu item is Wakakusa Curry, using a lot of spinach. The owner, who has worked as a teacher in a cooking school for over 20 years, completed the recipe that forms a perfect balance of spinach, onion, tomato, minced chicken and several kinds of spices. Choose your favorite topping with your curry (steamed vegetables, cheese, etc.). For vegetarians, curry using mushroom and beans is recommended.
Wakakusa curry: 700 yen / Chicken curry: 950 yen / Omelet Wakakusa curry: 850 yen / Vegetarian curry: 1,000 yen
Tel: 0742-24-8022 / About 15 min. walk to the west from JR Nara Sta. along Sanjo Street,
enter the Mochiidono Center Arcade and the shop is on the left / Open: 11:30-22:00 (L.O. 21:30) / Closed: Thurs. /
(Central Nara/Yakitori (skewered chicken) )
Delicious, juicy Yakitori at a reasonable price
Toriko specializes in yakitori (Japan's popular dish of skewered chicken). All items on Toriko's menu are reasonably priced. The owner is a former office worker who went around many yakitori restaurants as he loves yakitori, and he wants his restaurant to be a casual place for ordinary office workers coming a few times a week to enjoy drink and delicious yakitori and to forget about their busy, tiring work day. Not only typical yakitori items but also their original is worth trying (chicken breast with wasabi (spicy horse radish paste) & sour soy sauce).
Yakitori on skewer: 280 yen/2 skewers / Arranged skewers (black pork, chicken wing, etc.): from 160 yen / Value set (3 drinks (draft beer, chu-hi, whisky with soda, shochu spirit, 6 skewers of yakitori, 2 side dishes): 2,320 yen
Tel: 0742-26-3775 / 1F of Masaki Bldg., Across from the bus terminal of JR Nara Sta. /
Open: 17:00-23:00 (L.O. 22:30)
(Central Nara/Healthy diner)
Healthy dishes with natural tastes for your body
Nothing gorgeous and exotic, but what diners can expect at cocoro is tasty, simple and healthy food. They offer just three set menus including one vegetarian friendly set every day. Most of the ingredients are grown in Japan and they try to use as few additives as possible so as to accentuate the food's natural taste. A popular cocoro Plate includes 3 dishes (fish, meat and vegetables) with brown rice and miso soup. The vegetarian-friendly seasonal dish in winter is hamburger steak made of lotus root (renkon) & tofu served with a thick Japanese broth (fish and meat-free). Refills of brown rice are served gratis.
cocoro Plate: 934 yen / Plate of the day: 724 yen (choose main dish from fish or meat) / Lotus root (Renkon) & tofu hamburger steak: 829 yen + 189 yen for drink, +262 yen for dessert (Soy milk pudding with brown sugar syrup, sorbet, ice cream) +399 yen for both drink and dessert
Tel: 0742-23-5556 / In Nalala (dining & shopping complex), 1 min. from #4 exit of Kintetsu Nara Sta. / Open: 11:00-15:00 (L.O. 14:30), also open 18:00-21:00 (L.O. 20:00) on Sat. & Sun. / Closed: Thurs. /
Kasuga Ninai Jaya
(Central Nara/Rice porridge & Nara's specialty)
Seasonal rice porridge from Kasuga Grand Shrine
Kasuga Ninai Jaya is directly managed by Kasuga Grand Shrine, one of Nara's World Heritages. They offer warm rice porridge and change the main taste every month based on the traditional Japanese seasonal events: yam potato for December (symbol of longevity), New Year's grasses for January, soy beans for February (spring seasonal division). Ninai Jaya also offers Nara's specialties including Kakinoha Sushi and Nara pickles. On a warm day, take a table seat in the large garden and enjoy a luxurious winter dining moment.
Manyo-gayu rice porridge (with pickles and side dish): 1,050 yen / Yamato Meibutsu-zen Set (rice porridge, Kakinoha sushi, side dishes, kuzu-mochi dumpling): 1,580 yen / Zenzai (sweet red bean soup with rice cake): 630 yen /
Matcha powdered green tea (with sweet): 680 yen
Tel: 0742-27-2718 / In the precinct of Kasuga Grand Shrine, next to the Manyo Botanical Garden / Open: 10:00-16:00 / Closed: Mon. in Dec.-Mar., June-Sept.
(Central Nara/Japanese dishes & izakaya)
A wide range of Japanese cuisine at reasonable prices
Ichijo is a Japanese-style restaurant and izakaya pub set amongst the bustle of Higashimuki Shopping Arcade. A good point for foreign diners is that they offer almost every kind of typical "Japanese dish" like sashimi, tempura, tofu, edamame, etc., and what is more, every item is priced very reasonably! Their beverage options also offer quite a variety to choose from (sake, shochu (spirit), etc.). Ichijo is also a great option for lunch. One main dish (sashimi, tempura, pork cutlet, steak, etc.) is served accompanied with side dishes, rice and soup, for only 800 yen! The sushi set with a bowl of noodle is also popular.
Draft beer: 400 yen / Assorted sashimi of the day: 600 yen / Lunch set (sashimi, tempura, pork cutlet, steak): 800 yen / Sushi set (with udon or soba noodles): 800 yen / Ichijo Gozen (choose two main dishes): 1,300 yen
Tel: 0742-22-6226 / A 3-min. walk from Kintestu Nara Sta., on the east side of Higashimuki Shopping Arcade / Open: 11:00-14:00, 17:00-23:00
Kitchen Arles Kan
(Central Nara/Steak & Western dish)
Serving hearty "Yoshoku" dishes in Nara for 40 years
Japanese food culture has changed drastically over the last 30-40 years and a new genre has established itself – Yoshoku, or Western dishes. Hamburger steak, fried shrimp, curry and steak… these dishes have become some of Japan's favorites today. The owner & chef of Arles Kan has worked in Nara as a Yoshoku chef for almost 40 years. He doesn't hesitate to take time and effort to make every dish delicious and hearty. Enjoy "Japanese-born Western dishes" on your table. Steak and hamburger steak are recommended while rich, thoroughly simmered beef stew with chunks of superbly tender meat is highly popular.
Lunch: Beef stew set: 1,500 yen, Curry set: 1,300 yen / Steak set: 1,500 yen / Stew set (beef stew or cow tongue stew): 1,900 yen / Steak dinner: 2,800 yen / Hamburger steak (100% Japanese beef): 1,500 yen
Tel: 0742-24-1344 / A 5-min. walk from Kintetsu Nara Sta., in the Mochiidono Center Arcade /
Open: 11:00-14:30, 17:00-20:30 / Closed: Thurs.
(Central Nara/Matcha green tea & sweets)
Café time savoring Nara's locally harvested green tea
Mannendo uses only "Yamato-cha," green tea leaf grown in Nara for their menu items. For those who wish to sample the rich taste of green tea itself, try matcha powdered green tea (served with seasonal Japanese sweet, sweet red bean soup with rice cake). Diners can treat themselves to some of the Japanese fusion sweets with their rich aroma and flavor of green tea: ice cream, bavarois and gorgeous parfaits. For those who want more than a sweet, try Mannendo's special Indian curry & naan brought directly from a restaurant in Tokyo which serves the Indian Embassy.
Matcha with special sweets: 700 yen / Mahoroba parfait: 900 yen / Ice cream: 450 yen / Butter chicken or keema curry with naan, rice and salad: 750 yen / Yamato matcha: from 500 yen
Tel: 0742-24-7530 / A 3-min. walk from Kintetsu Nara Sta., on the west side of Konishi Sakura Street / Open: 11:00-20:00 / http://saryo-mannendo.jp
(Central Nara/Bar & live)
A fusion space for a drink, past & present, Japanese & Western
Club D is a unique bar and live house situated in the very rear of a large 180-year-old machiya townhouse. After walking deep into the narrow lane by the café and the radio station, visitors will arrive at a big, heavy door. The building that houses Club D used to be for rice storage. Club D's original Naramachi cocktail using Nara's locally brewed sake are recommended. Live music events are held occasionally. An atmosphere of traditional Japan, nice drinks and lively music… Club D offers everything to make your night enjoyable and delicious..
Draft beer: 500 yen / Guinness: 650 yen / Nara-machi cocktail: 700 yen / Nara's local sake: from 600 yen / Wine: 500 yen / Dried curry: 880 yen /
*Assorted appetizers will be served as charge: 350 yen
Tel: 0742-24-9081 / About 15-min. walk from Kintetsu Nara Sta., in the Nara Orient-kan / Open: 19:00-24:00 (L.O. 23:30), from 17:00 on Sat., 17:00-23:00 on Sun. & national holidays/ Closed: Mon. / http://www.creerks.com/
(Central Nara/Japanese style bar & restaurant )
Full of fresh fish and seafood with reasonable prices
As soon as diners enter Sakanaya Dojo, they are greeted by fish swimming in a large tank. Best fish and seafood are brought directly from the port and diners can enjoy the freshest seafood of the day in their best form: sashimi (raw), grilled, deep-fried, salad, etc. Sashimi is the simplest and most popular way to enjoy fish, but Sakanaya Dojo offers unique menu items: tuna cheek steak, salad with fresh seafood, assorted skewers of grilled fish of the day, etc. Order a glass of beer or sake and try the freshest and finest taste from the Sea of Japan.
5 kinds of assorted sashimi of the day: 1,029 yen / Assorted skewered grilled fish of the day: 546 yen / Seafood chijimi (Korean style pancake): 399 yen / Sushi of different parts of tuna: 609 yen / Sakanaya Dojo seafood salad: 609 yen
Tel: 050-5798-8278 / A 3-min. walk from JR Nara Sta., on the south end of Sanjo Street / Open: 17:00-1:00 (until 2:00 on Fri., Sat., the night before National Holidays), 16:00-24:00 on Sun. & National Holidays
Major credit cards accepted / http://r.gnavi.co.jp/k781339/
Mugi no Kura
(Central Nara/Udon noodle )
Freshly made udon noodles using only finest Japanese ingredients
Udon is a flour-noodle dish popular as a reasonably priced, casual daily meal in Japan. The owner of Mugi no Kura uses only Japanese ingredients both for the noodles and for the fish broth in which he can be 100% confident in their quality. A variety of udon items are on their menu but the most recommended and impressive is the "Kama-age Udon Daibutsu-mori" Almost 3 times more udon is served than in the usual portion, yet it still costs only 680 yen! Savor the simple taste of udon with condiments (green onion, grated ginger, spices) as you like.
Kama-age udon: 580 yen / Daibutsu kitsune udon (topped with deep-fried tofu): 680 yen / Kakiage udon (topped with vegetable tempura): 680 yen / Rice bowl topped with fried chicken: 580 yen +100 yen for additional portion of udon noodles.
Tel: 0742-26-4834 / 1-min. walk from Kintetsu Nara Sta., on the east side of Higashimuki Shopping Arcade
Open: 11:30-22:30 (L.O.21:30), until 22:00 (L.O. 21:00) on Sun. & national holidays / http://www.happoh.com/
(Central Nara/Eel cuisine & traditional Japanese )
Richly flavored eel dishes and seasonal tastes of Japan
Edogawa specializes in Japan's much loved eel dish. Grilled Japanese eel seasoned with teriyaki (sweetened soy sauce) is a favorite of many Japanese people. Besides eel, Edogawa serves typical Japanese dishes such as sashimi and tempura brimming with seasonal vegetables and Nara's locally grown chicken. Their reasonably priced set menu including these items on one plate is recommended. The dignified 140-year-old classical Japanese architecture which used to be a kimono shop (traditional Japanese clothing) adds even more taste to your dining experience.
Naramachi-zen Set (grilled eel, sashimi, tempura, soup, rice, etc.): 2,500 yen / Wa-teishoku Set (sashimi, tempura, simmered vegetables, soup, rice, etc.): 1,680 yen / Machiya-bento set (sashimi, simmered vegetables, grilled Nara's local chicken): 2,100 yen
Tel: 0742-20-4400 / A 10-min. walk from Kintetsu Nara Sta., on the south end of Shimomikado Shopping Arcade / Open: 11:00-21:30 (L.O. 20:30) / http://r.gnavi.co.jp/k471700/ / English, Chinese, Korean menu available
Naramachi Tacos Public House Ritz
(Central Nara/Tacos & Mexican dishes )
Hot and delicious Mexican dishes in Nara
Enter the Mochiidono Center Arcade and turn into a very narrow lane, where a bright pink sign stands. Ritz is a newly opened cozy eatery and bar serving a variety of tacos, taco rice and other Mexican food like quesadilla and nachos. Select whatever you like from their wide range of additional toppings list and create your favorite taste. Tequila, beer, cocktails, shochu (Japanese spirit), Japanese sake and many other drink items are also available. Sport watching and fun events are held occasionally. Come to Ritz and have a fun night with young people in Nara!
Tacos: from 580 yen / Taco rice: from 650 yen / Additional toppings (salsa sauce, avocado, beef, garlic, etc.): from +80 yen / Lunch set (tacos, taco rice, hamburger steak or curry & rice): 500 yen / Quesadilla: from 380 yen / Draft beer: from 480 yen
Tel: 0742-31-6144 / A 5-min. walk from Kintetsu Nara Sta., enter the Mochiidono Center Arcade and turn east at the narrow lane before a sport goods shop / Open: 11:30-15:00 (L.O. 14:00), 17:00-24:00 (L.O. 23:00)
Closed: irregularly / http://ritz-pub.com/
Asuka-en Tea Garden
(Central Nara/Café )
Relaxing tea time in a quiet trees and green foliage
On the main street approaching Todai-ji Temple, there is a small gallery, Asuka-en, specializing in photos of Buddhist statues. There is a café in the gallery but if one visits Asuka-en on a fine day, it is highly recommended to take a table in their back garden. The gallery is located next to Yoshiki-en Garden and Himuro Shrine, so that diner can enjoy a relaxing tea time in the garden area surrounded by quiet trees and green foliage. The gallery shop offers many exclusive postcards, stationeries and accessories which incorporate the elegance of the Buddhist beauty of Japan.
Pot of tea (Original blend, Earl Grey, Darjeeling): 650-700 yen / Iced tea (Original blend, Earl Grey): 600 yen / Coffee: 500 yen / Iced coffee: 600 yen / Cake (apple & sweet potato pie, fruit tart, sesame & soy milk mont blance): 400 yen
Tel: 0742-22-5883 / About 10-min. walk from Kintetsu Nara Sta. in the direction of Todai-ji Temple, across from Nara National Museum / Open: 10:00-18:030 (until 17:00 between Nov. and Mar.) / Closed: Mon.
(Central Nara/Shabu shabu )
Finest-quality Japanese "Shabu shabu" hotpot restaurant
The name "shabu shabu" is derived from the "swish swish" sound of cooking meat in a pot. Finely sliced meat and vegetables are briefly cooked in a broth and then dipped in a sesame-based sauce. Wakisaka uses only Kobe beef, which is known worldwide for its superior quality. If diners choose the marbled meat, it will melt away in the mouth. Enjoying rice porridge (using the leftover broth from shabu shabu) after the main dish will further pander to the diner's taste buds. Reasonably priced lunch sets are also available.
Shabu shabu: 2,600 yen / Extra fine shabu shabu (marbled beef): 4,200 yen / Beef hotpot set (lunch only): 650 yen / Extra fine beef hotpot set (lunch only): 1,200 yen
Tel: 0742-26-7000 / About 10-min. walk from JR Nara Sta. along Sanjo Street, 30 meters west of Sarusawa Pond / Open: 11:00-21:30 (L.O. 20:30); Lunch menu is available until 14:30 / Closed: irregularly
Nakagawa Masashichi Sabo
(Central Nara/Japanese style café )
Feel the "Taste of Japan" with tea and elegant surroundings
Nakagawa Masashichi Shoten is a long-established store in Nara that has specialized in linen products for over 200 years. They have created a cozy Japanese style café "Nakagawa Masashichi Sabo" in their classical 120-year-old Japanese building. Diners can enjoy fine matcha green tea and sweets overlooking their beautiful Japanese garden. Autumn recommendation is "Kasane no Irome no Parfait (Layered-color parfait)" featuring chestnuts and representing the elegant colored layers of ancient Heian-period attire (8-13th century). A special lunch set, Oju Lunch, is also available (limited number of servings a day; reservations required). *There is a shop at the front displaying their original linen items.
Kasane no Irome no Parfait: 1,200 yen / Sake-kasu (sake lee) cake: 500 yen / Matcha green tea: 700 yen / Karigane green tea: 600 yen / Oju Lunch Set (limited number of servings a day; reservations required): 2,220 yen
Tel: 0742-24-2267 / A 2-min. walk to the west from Sarusawa Pond / Open every day: 11:30-18:30 (L.O.18:00)
slow food Nino
(Central Nara/Italian dishes)
Savor "slow" taste from Italy
"Enjoy comfort and an affluent food life amongst the business of daily life." Nino's owner-chef was strongly impressed with the philosophy of the "slow food" movement, which originated in Italy, and immediately decided to incorporate this word into the name of his newly opened restaurant in Nara. Not only does he serve 100% naturally-grown vegetables, but strictly chooses all the best ingredients for his dishes, from the pasta to the olive oil. From typical Italian (pomodoro, pizza margherita) to Nino's originals, try Nino's heartfelt Italian dishes that satisfy diners' hearts and taste buds "slowly."
Lunch A (1 main dish (pasta, pizza or risotto) + salad & soup): from 1,200 yen, Lunch B (3 mini size main dishes + salad & soup): 1,600 yen, Lunch C (3 mini size main dishes + salad & soup): 2,000 yen / Wine: glass from 500 yen, bottle from 2,500 yen / Pasta: from 700 yen / Pizza: from 800 yen / Dessert: from 500 yen
Tel: 0742-31-3650 / In front of the #5 exit of Kintetsu Nara Sta., across from the station building /
Open: 11:30-14:30?L.O. 13:30??17:30-23:30 (L.O. 22:30) / Closed: Mon./ http://www.slowlyfoods-nino.com/
(Central Nara/Vegetarian restaurant)
100% vegetarian & vegan friendly restaurant in Nara
The owner & chef, Ms. Yoshiko Nishizawa, herself has been a vegetarian for most of her life and her dishes are full of consideration for health and life. No animal products and strong smelling vegetables like onions are used while almost all vegetables and ingredients are organic and chemical free. The lunch set includes four different dishes (salad, Chinese, simmered, fried, etc.) and is served with brown rice (100% or 70%) and soup. Yoshiko cooks her broth with only shiitake mushroom and kelp. She speaks Chinese and English and her husband speaks Spanish and English, so communication is no problem. Every bite at Kinatei is safe, delicious and healthy.
Lunch set (with coffee and dessert): 1,500 yen / Udon noodle with deep-fried tofu: 500 yen / Udon noodle in thick soup with five toppings: 700 yen / Dinner course (reservation only; Japanese or Taiwanese): from 2,500 yen
Tel: 080-6119-6105 / A 5-min. walk to the south from JR Nara Sta., in front of Nara Life-long Study Center
Open: 11:30-14:30, reservation only for dinner time / Closed: Mon. & national holidays / *Depending on the situation, pickup service is provided from/to major tourist sites in Nara (Todai-ji Temple, for example); Call and enquire directly.
(Central Nara/Oriental medicinal café & Asian goods)
Peaceful café time amongst the bright and green garden light
As the name signifies, (Nonohana means field flowers), this café is filled with fresh vegetation and plants. Upon entering, diners will first glimpse goods and furniture from East Asia including fine quality Korean antiques. Further in, there is both an inside and outside café. The table in the garden is highly recommended as diners can immerse themselves in the deep green of natural plants. Their menu is unique & wholesome Asian Yakuzen using healthy Asian herbs including rice porridges, cakes and Asian herb teas. Recharge yourself with good energy from the natural decor and healthy herbal dishes.
Yakuzen rice porridge set: from 1,100 yen (+200 yen for dessert, +200 yen for drink) / Yakuzen cake and Asian herb tea set: 850 yen / Asian herb tea: 700 yen / Japanese green tea: 750 yen / Coffee: 500 yen
Tel: 0742-22-1139 / About 15-min. walk from Kintetsu Nara Sta., west of Gango-ji Temple / Open: 11:00-17:00 (L.O. 16:30) / Closed: Mon.
Dolce Bar Purin Bar 48
(Central Nara/Dolce & bar)
Nara local's favorite place to eat & drink
After entering through its distinctive door diners will encounter a uniquely unusual standing bar. This is what they call "Dolce Bar" as diners enjoy little homemade sweets with their drinks. They prepare over 5 kinds of sweets everyday and serve them in a tapas style on small dishes. Each sweet is 350 yen so choose one or more to discover your favorite and to see how each sweet goes with beer, Japanese sake and wine. Food menu items are also available.
Today's sweets tapas (gateau chocolat, blue cheese cake, etc.): 350 yen / Draft beer: 450 yen / Japanese sake: from 500 yen / Glass wine: 400 yen / *Ladies time until 20:00 (men must be accompanied by a woman)
Tel: 0742-24-4811 / A 5-min. walk to south from Kintetsu Nara Sta., across from Tsubai Elementary School (1F of the building) / Open: 18:30-13:00 (L.O.) / Closed: Tues.
(Central Nara/Japanese style restaurant & bar)
Nara local's favorite place to eat & drink
Izakaya is a typical Japanese style casual restaurant and bar where young and old, men and women get together and enjoy drinking and eating. At Sharaku, their dishes use many Nara's specialties including locally grown Yamato beef & pork, tofu made in Yoshino (south of Nara), shiitake mushroom from Totsukawa (village in south of Nara), etc. Sharaku is also open during the day and their lunch menu is reasonably priced and worth trying. Yamato beef stew with rice is 700 yen and the rice bowl topped with Japanese beef (photo) is 1,200 yen. Stop by Sharaku and join in a fun time with Nara locals.
Yamato beef stew & rice (lunch): 700 yen / Rice bowl topped with Yamato chicken breast (lunch): 800 yen / Rice bowl topped with Japanese beef steak (lunch): 1,200 yen / Nara's locally brewed sake: around 500 yen / Shochu (distilled sake): around 500 yen
Tel: 0742-27-2330 / A 3-min. walk to the south from Sarusawa Pond / Open: 12:00-15:00, 18:00-3:00 / Closed: Wed.
(Central Nara/Italian café & bar)
Freshly baked pizza at an unbelievably reasonable price
"Birbante" is an Italian word that represents "Wicked Kid." The friendly owner of Birbante always welcomes customers with delicious dishes and a playful rapport just like a kid. Birbante's must-try is their hand-made pizza. Pizzas are made from Italian flour and each is carefully prepared after the diner chooses their selection. From typical Margarita to Marinara (full of herbs and garlic) along with Birbante's recommendations, a variety of hot and fresh pizza are always ready. Pasta and other a la carte dishes are also available. Birbante opens until late, so enjoy your night in Nara to your utmost.
Pizza margarita: 550 yen / Birbante's recommended pizza: 800 yen / Pasta: from 750 yen / Glass wine: from 500 yen / Draft beer: 550 yen
Tel: 0742-31-2989 / About a 10-min. walk from JR or Kintetsu Nara Station; turn to the south on Yasuragi-no-michi Street and walk 300 meters / Open: 18:00? / Closed: irregularly
(Central Nara/Thai café & goods)
Meet Thai tastes in Nara
Phanfan is a little Thai café in the Mochiidono Center Arcade. One of their owners who lived in Chiang Mai for three years offers diners local Thai taste. The shop is also full of colorful and pretty Thai folk crafts and goods brought directly from Thailand by the owners: hand-made accessories, cool cloth (perfect for summer time!) and more. Their curries are spicy coconut milk-base green curry and relatively mild ginger & pork curry. Mango juice or lemon grass tea will offer a nice refreshment during a summer walk in Nara.
Ginger & pork curry: 850 yen / Coconut milk & chicken green curry: 850 yen / *+150 yen for drink. / Mango juice: 350 yen / Thai milk tea: 350 yen / Lemon grass tea: 350 yen
Tel: 090-8142-7331 / In the Yume Cube shopping space, in the Mochiidono Center Arcade, about 10-min. from Kintetsu Nara Sta. / Open: 10:00-19:00 (meals served from 11:00) / Closed: Thurs.
Japanese Dining Happoh
(Central Nara/Japanese dishes)
Sashimi, tempura, seafood, tofu; "Japanese dishes" are all here
Happoh, in the Higashimuki Shopping Arcade, is a great option for enjoying many of the typical tastes of Japan. Tempura and simmered dishes using Nara's seasonal vegetables, fresh fish and seafood directly brought from ports all around Japan, homemade tofu, Nara's locally grown chicken… Here diners can savor many of the different tastes of Nara & Japan that should not be missed during a visit to Japan. Happoh offers a premium dish of the day depending on the ingredients delivered that morning. Their reasonably priced lunch set is also recommended (tempura, sashimi, gyudon (rice bowl topped with simmered beef & onion, etc.).
Lunch: Mini-rice bowl with seafood sashimi and chilled somen noodles: 880 yen / Mini-rice bowl with tempura with chilled somen noodles: 880 yen / Sashimi set: 980 yen / Grilled skewered Nara chicken: from 380 yen/skewer / Assorted sushi: 680 yen / A la carte menu is available after 14:00.
Tel: 0742-26-4834 / 1-min. walk from Kintetsu Nara Sta., on the west side of Higashimuki Shopping Arcade
Open: 11:30-22:30 (L.O. 21:30), until 22:00 (L.O. 21:00) on Sun. & national holidays / http://www.happoh.com/
English & Chinese menu available
(Central Nara/Curry & Cafe)
Japanese people's favorite "Japanese home curry"
"A café in such a place…?" First comers will wonder and possibly grow worried upon entering the impossibly narrow lane to reach to Koruri. Koruri is a small eatery and café in the very local and nostalgic Naramachi area. Diners can try "Japanese-style" curry and rice here which is quite different from spicy Indian/Asian curry. Choose from special curry of the month using seasonal vegetables and ingredient or Koruri's regular curry menus like chicken & spinach, ground meat & mixed peas, etc.. All curry (except grilled curry) is available at half size & price as "Oyatsu Curry," which is perfect for a light meal and a snack during the day.
Summer vegetable curry: 700 yen / Chicken & spinach curry: 700 yen / Grounded meat and mixed peas curry: 600 yen / Coffee: 400 yen / Sweets: from 100 yen / *100 yen off for drinks with curry; *All curry (expect for grilled curry) are available as half-size, half-price "Oyatsu curry"
Tel: 0742-24-3648 / At the back of Jurin-in Temple; Exit from Jurin-in Temple and go left (east), then turn left (north) at the first narrow lane. / Open: 11:00-20:00 (until 19:00 in winter) / Closed: Tues. & end/beginning of the year
(Central Nara/Home-made quiche)
Quiche shop at the foot of Mount Wakakusa
While walking along the slope to Mount Wakakusa, people will come across a viv- id Italian flag fluttering on a traditional Japanese house. Le Case is a newly opened shop specializing in quiche and Italian dishes. All the ingredients, in- cluding nutritious whole-grain, rye flour and cultured butter used for the quiche are of a high standard. The owner strives to use Nara's fresh and safe organic vegetables and other foodstuffs such as
?cream cheese, apples and more as much as possible. Their variety of quiches is a good choice for both a snack and a full meal. Coffee, tea and seasonal soup are also served in the eat-in space.
Quiche cream cheese & Anno sweet potato: 450 yen / Quiche Lorraine: 450 yen / Lunch course (amuse, soup, appetizer, main dish, dessert, coffee or tea): 2,500 yen (reservation by 15:00 on the day one day before required)
Tel: 0742-26-8707 / A 5-min. walk (to northeast) fromKasuga Grand Shrine / Open: 10:00-17:00 / Closed: Tues.
Art café Sankaku
(Central Nara/Café & gallery)
Discover new art from Nara
sankaku opened in 2010 as a unique venue: a café and a place offering an op- portunity for young artists to show their art. The owner is himself an art curator and producer and created this unique space along with artists infused with en- thusiasm for art and creation. Formerly a dance hall, the spacious room has a stage now used for a variety of art and music events. Sankaku's recommended menu item is their Sankaku curry. Tomato and coconut-base curry is perfectly complimented by Nara's ancient rice. Discover Nara's new art creations and nice food together.
Sankaku curry (with pickles and salad): 800 yen / Loco moco (with pickles): 800 yen / Rich pudding parfait: 600 yen / Waffle plate: 700 yen
Tel: 050-1488-0278 / About 15 min. walk from JR Nara Sta. (go along Sanjo St.), and enter Mochiidono Center Arcade. Walk about 300 meter and the café is on the 2nd floor on the left / Open: 12:00-22:00 (until 18:00 on the last day of special exhibition) / Closed: Thurs. (open on national holidays)
Café & Bar Chillout
(Central Nara/Café & bar)
Chill out with a drink or coffee
A-few-minute walk to the west of Kintetsu Nara Station, there is a cozy bar in an old building. Bar Chillout is open until late and offers customers a relaxed and
laid back atmosphere. This is the perfect place for a drink at the end of the day, where one can enjoy
?chatting with friends for hours while enjoying good food and drinks. A large private room is available on the 4th floor where customers will feel as if they are relaxing in a friend's home. A wide ranging drink menu and selective food menu await diners. The best recommendation is a curry brought in from a nearby Sri Lankan restaurant in Nara.
Sri Lankan restaurant Lucky Garden's curry plate: 1,050 yen (limited number) Cocktails: from 600 yen / Non-alcoholic cocktail: from 450 yen / Pasta: from 700 yen
Tel: 0742-93-9116 / A 3-min. walk from Kintetsu Nara Sta., about 100 meters to the west from Takama intersection, on the 3rd floor of the building / Open: 19:00-2:00, until 4:00 on Sat.
Natural Kitchen & Bar nero
(Central Nara/Western cuisine & bar)
Western dishes featuring Japanese ingredients & taste
nero is a small restaurant located on the 3rd floor of the building. Their dishes are mainly Italian and Spanish but the chef exhibits his full range of cooking creativity in each dish. nero is also a nice place to stop by for the last drink
of the day accompanied by one or two small, savory dishes. A perfect diner's choice is their "Simmered mushrooms in olive oil." Mushrooms stuffed with fresh ham are the best accompaniment to any kind of wine. Another attraction is that the chef always selects Nara's fresh and local products for his cooking.
Simmered mushrooms in olive oil: 800 yen / Caponata of Nara vegetables: 500 yen / Pasta: from 950 yen / Pizza: from 950 yen / A la carte: from 400 yen
Tel: 0742-24-2055 / A 3-min. walk from Kintetsu Nara Sta., on the north side of Sakura Street, 3F of Raffine Toyo Bldg. / Open: 11:30-15:00, 17:30-24:00 / Closed: Mon.
(Central Nara/Octopus dumpling)
Hot and delicious taste of Kansai Tako-yaki!
Takoyaki is a popular ball-shaped Japa- nese dumpling or more like a savory pancake made of batter and cooked in a special takoyaki pan. Typical takoyaki is filled with diced octopus, tempura scraps (tenkasu), pickled ginger and green onion. Everyone loves takoyaki both for a meal and a snack. Hachi's takoyaki has a crispy outside while the inside is hot
& meltingly soft. Choose your favorite sauce and add toppings (mayonnaise, green onion, bonito flakes), then enjoy while it is hot! Hachi's super
friendly shop manager loves to chat with customers. A combination of delicious takoyaki & enjoyable conversation is a must-try!
Takoyaki 6 pieces: 350 yen, 9 pieces: 500 yen / *Choose from Japanese thick Worcestershire sauce, soy sauce, miso (salty red bean paste) or green onion & sour soy sauce / +100 yen for takoyaki with cheese
Tel: 090-9887-0809 / About 10-min. walk from Kintetsu Nara Sta., in the Mochiidono Center Arcade (in front of the entrance of Okest Super- market) / Open everyday: 10:00-21:00
(Central Nara/Japanese home dishes)
Tastes of a Japanese home in a cosy atmpsphere
Enter Uri and take off your shoes as if you are visiting a familiar friend's house. Uri is a small eatery which looks like just an ordinary Japanese house. Indeed, Uri's dishes are based on the foods Japanese people enjoy in every day life, but of course Uri's owner always adds bits and pieces of originality to each dish with a playful mind. Lunch set of the day comes with a daily special and a few other seasonal vegetables dishes. Enjoy healthy and satisfactory servings at a very reasonable price: 850 yen! Uri offers a relaxing and homely Japanese atmosphere and welcomes you with the tastes of a Japanese home.
Lunch set of the day: 850 yen / Lunch set of grilled fish: 850 yen / Coffee: 350 yen / Draft beer: 480 yen
Tel: 0742-24-0106 / A 20 min.walk from JR Nara Sta., 1-min. walk from Jurin-in Temple /
Open: 11:00-16:00 (L.O. 15:00), appointment only for dinner time / Closed: 1st & 3rd Sun., 14th of every month
(Central Nara/Udon noodle)
Homemade udon noodle and perfect Kansai-style broth
Udon is a popular noodle made from flour. Typical udon has a thick
and springy texture and is gener- ally served in a soup with vari-
ous toppings. Udon is a specialty food of Sanuki on Shikoku Island, and Kamaiki's udon is based on this Sanuki style but with an even more springy texture. The soup is Kansai-style which requires careful preparation; dried sardine and sea kelp are soaked overnight in water to create a rich flavor. The recommended menu item is udon with deep- fried chicken and fish cake (chikuwa). This type of udon is not served in a hot soup but comes with a lesser amount of richly flavored broth poured over the noodles and toppings.
Udon with deep-fried chicken & fish cake with soup (hot or chilled): 880 yen / Udon with curry soup topped with deep-fried chicken & fish cake: 900 yen / Tsuke-men udon dipped in a in soy sauce-based sauce: 880 yen
Tel: 0742-22-0051 / A 3-min. walk from Kintetsu Nara Sta., on the east side of Higashimuki Shopping Arcade (across from Nanto Bank) / Open: 11:30-15:00 (open until 20:00 during special event period) / Closed: Mon.
(Central Nara/Café & Bar)
A relaxing moment in a stylish "hide-out"
A stylish café and bar where diners can visit and enjoy anytime of the day for a cup of coffee, lunch, dinner and a drink at the bar. As its name "Cachette" signifies, (meaning "hide-out" in French), this cozy café is situated at the end of very narrow lane and is the perfect place to relax in comfort. They directly import fine quality coffee beans from Italy and their espresso is definitely worth a try. Also their "Latte art" is a must-try with its pretty design on the cappuccino's milk foam. The Lunch plate of the day is reasonably priced yet offers generous servings. A variety of cocktails and other alcoholic drinks are available. Stop by at Cachette and enjoy your time in the hide-out.
Lunch plate of the day: 980 yen / Select lunch set: 980 yen / Dinner plate of the day: 1,580 yen / Espresso: 320 yen /
Draft beer: 500 yen / Cocktails: from 580 yen
On the south side of Sakura Street; enter a narrow lane next to Arte Bldg. (west side) to the end
Open: 11:30-24:00 (L.O.: 23:30)
(Central Nara/Smoothies & Café)
Healthy organic vegetable dishes and fruity smoothies
Drink Drank is a pretty, cozy café where diners can savor delicious dishes using organic vegetables and smoothies. Their lunch is a must-try. Choose one from two options of rice bowls (topped with a variety of vegetables) which comes with side dishes, rice and dessert. All vegetables are fresh, locally grown and organic. Simple cooking accentuates the natural taste of the ingredients. Another attractive menu item is smoothies, one of their specialties since they opened. One glass of smoothie is full of juicy fruits and taste so good (a whole apple is used for one glass). During winter, the Asuka Ruby (Nara's special strawberry) smoothie is especially recommended.
Matcha green tea & banana smoothie: 680 yen / Asuka Ruby strawberry smoothie: 680 yen / Vegi Vegi meal plate: 950 yen
*All smoothies are OK for take-out (100 yen off from regular prices).
On the south side of Sanjo, one minute walk south from Sarusawa Pond
Open: 11:00-20:00 (L.O. 19:30)
(Central Nara/Japanese sweets & cafe)
Have a break with Japanese sweets originating in the old village of Nara
Tenpyo-an specializes in traditional Japanese sweets using fine ingredients. A number of delicious and seasonal Japanese and other sweets are waiting for you in the shop on the 1st floor. Tenpyo-an's best recommendation is Yamato Sanzan, a very soft pancake with sweet red bean paste inside. There is a café on the 2nd floor where visitors can relax and enjoy a tea break with a tempting variety of sweets: a set of matcha green tea and beautiful sweet dumpling, matcha green tea parfait, etc.. It is also OK to buy sweets downstairs and bring them to the café (at least one drink order necessary).
Matcha green tea & fresh sweet dumpling: 800 yen / Matcha green tea parfait: 800 yen / Yamato Sanzan pancake with sweet red bean paste: 157 yen / Somen noodle lunch set: 1,000 yen
Across from Nara National Museum, a 15-min. walk from Kintetsu Nara Sta. (in the Yume-Kaze Plaza)
The owner of Sakura Burger has loved burgers since he was a kid and finally opened his burger shop in Nara. This is one of just a few restaurants in Nara that specializes in burgers. The best recommendation is Sakura Burger, the same as their restaurant's name. Homemade thick bacon and juicy pate is flavored with salt, pepper and tartar sauce. Add ketchup and mustard as you like. A smaller Momiji Burger uses a 100% beef pate with their original demi-glace sauce and onion. Seasonal special burgers and other varieties using Nara's local ingredients are also available. Choose additional toppings from their variety of options (baked egg, smoked cheese, etc.)!
Sakura burger: 950 yen / Momiji burger: 500 yen / Cheese burger: 920 yen / Avocado burger: 950 yen / Chili burger: 950 yen / Topping (baked egg, avocado, homemade bacon, etc.): from 100 yen
Across from Kintetsu Nara Sta., about 5 min. walk in the Higashimuki Kita Shopping Street
Open: 11:00-21:30 (L.O.)
(Central Nara/Eel cuisine)
Unagi, Japan's unique delicacy
Traditionally, one of Japanese people's special favorite dishes is unagi, or eel dishes. A fresh eel is cleaned and cut into pieces, and then grilled over a charcoal fire while adding a sweet soy sauce-based sauce. The aroma of the sauce and soft eel meat makes it a perfect delicacy. Kawahara uses only Japanese fresh unagi (including wild eels) for their dishes. Recommended menu item is hitsumabushi, rice topped with pieces of eel served in a wooden container. First, try just the eel to savor the flavor. Next, enjoy it with rice. And for the last stage, serve it in a small bowl with broth and eat together like a rice soup. Take-out menu is also available.
Hitsumabushi: 2,700 yen / Una-don (rice bowl topped with pieces of eel): from 1,680 yen / Weekday lunch set (pieces of grilled eel, rice, soup, egg roll): 1,370 yen / Rice ball with eel pieces: 680 yen (take-out)
A 3-min. walk from JR Nara Sta., on the north side of Sanjo
Nara's traditional Kakinoha Sushi & a variety of original sushi
Izasa specializes in original sushi creations. Izasa sushi is a rice ball with a piece of salmon wrapped in a bamboo leaf. Kakinoha sushi is a hand-shaped cube of rice seasoned with vinegar with a slice of salted mackerel on top wrapped with a persimmon leaf. Both sushi are local specialties of Nara which everyone should try. On the first floor is a shop for take-out and souvenirs and the restaurant can be found on the second floor. In the restaurant, sushi and other traditional Japanese dishes (somen noodles, tempura and other kinds of sushi) can be enjoyed.
Assorted Izasa sushi (9 pieces of sushi with soup): 1,080 yen / Izasa sushi set (5 pieces of sushi with noodles & side dish): 1,280 yen / Izasa sushi & tempura set (5 pieces of sushi with noodles & tempura): 1,600 yen
Across from Nara National Museum, a 15-min. walk from Kintetsu Nara Sta. (in the Yume-Kaze Plaza)
A variety of hearty and healthy dishes for your complete contentment
Harishin’s classical Japanese building is about 230 years old. The first generation owner of Harishin started the restaurant 130 years ago in a different area of Nara and it was moved to the present location about 100 years ago. Today, the 6th generation owner has taken over the business. The interior is separated into two sections, both offering a truly Japanese atmosphere. One is a large Japanese room with low tables and the other features a large sunken floor table with a hearth. The reasonably priced Kamitsumichi Bento set and tempura set using many of Nara’s local products are both popular.
Kamitsumichi Bento set: 2,900 yen / Tempura Gozen set: 1,500 yen / Kaiseki course: 4,000 yen, 6,000 yen, 8,000 yen (reservation required 2 days before)
About 12-min. walk from Kintetsu Nara Sta., west of Gango-ji Temple
(Central Nara/Café in a traditional machiya house)
A variety of hearty and healthy dishes for your complete contentment
Kanakana is located in the nostalgic Naramachi town area and is very popular with locals and tourists. Dating from the 1920s, the building was renovated while keeping the original structures and now provides a relaxing atmosphere for diners taking their meals in the homey open space. Kanakana’s heartwarming dishes all use fresh ingredients and are carefully prepared. The most popular menu item, Kanakana Gohan, includes one main dish and a selection of four other dishes served in pretty small dishes and bowls, dessert and coffee/tea/herb tea.
Kanakana plate: 1,250 yen / Shrimp curry: 900 yen / Spinach curry: 850 yen
A 15-min. walk from Kintetsu Nara Sta., to the southeast of Gango-ji Temple
Open:11:00-20:00 / Closed:Monday
(Central Nara/Café, dining and bar)
A relaxing, spacious Bali style café & dining
mellow café’s interior furniture and decoration are all directly imported from Bali. There is also a bar counter and stone oven used for baking their most popular pizzas. Diners can enjoy their Italian dishes including 10-15 kinds of hot and freshly-baked pizza, fresh pasta, sweets and drink items. The unique Narazuke pizza using Narazuke pickles and sake lee sauce is outstanding. It has a strong smell and flavor but once you acquire the taste, you will never forget it! Visit mellow café whenever you are in the mood for lunch, café, dinner or drinks and enjoy a memorable dining experience.
Pizza (Narazuke pickles & sake lee sauce): 1,300 yen / Pizza lunch: 1100 yen / mellow lunch: 1200 yen / Beer: from 500 yen / Cake (Bambi roll): 480 yen
A 2-min. walk from Kintetsu Nara Sta., on the east side of Konishi Sakura Street
Open:11:00-23:30 (L.O.: 23:00)
English menu / Wifi available
Gallery & Café Takeno
(Central Nara/Gallery & Cafe)
Enjoy a pleasant meal, sweets, tea/coffee and art all together
Shizue, the mother, and her two daughters, Ai and Mai, opened this attractive gallery & café in September 2010. Half of the space is a gallery and the other is a café space where you can have a relaxing time viewing the art works. Their lunch set has three options: bagel, quiche or spicy chicken curry. Their homemade cakes include cheese cake, chocolate, tart of the day, tube cake and more. The coffee and tea menu is also worth a look as there are a variety of kinds to choose from. Enjoy a pleasant meal or sweets, a comfortable time and art all at the same time.
Lunch set (bagel, quiche or spicy chicken curry): from 700 yen (+300 yen with drink) / Cake set: 750 yen / Coffee: from 400 yen / Beer: 600 yen
A 10-min. walk from Kintetsu Nara Sta., southwest of Sarusawa Pond
Open:10:30-19:00 / Closed:Mon., 1st Tues. of the month
(Central Nara/Udon & soba noodle dishes)
Stir well and enjoy the taste of broth and udon noodles
Udon is a popular Japanese noodle dish and Fukutoku’s “Kakimaze Nara Udon” is filled with the owner’s pride. Regular udon is made of flour, water and salt but Fukutoku omits the salt so the noodles have a special texture and taste. Another secret of Fukutoku’s udon is how they make the broth. Shredded bonito flakes and soy sauce is put at the bottom of the bowl and boiled noodle are placed on top. Then hot water is added along with a super thin tangle of shaved kelp. Stir the contents well from the bottom of the bowl before eating for a perfect combination of broth and noodles! Try Fukutoku’s udon and savor its original taste.
Tokusen udon (with assorted tempura): 1,100 yen / Udon set (with three side dishes, rice, pickles): 1,100 yen / Udon topped with shrimp tempura and seaweed: 890 yen / Udon topped with thin tangle of shaved kelp and seaweed: 740 yen
On the east side of Sarusawa Pond
Open:11:00-15:00, 17:00-21:00 (closes when noodles are sold out) / Closed:Mon. (open on national holidays)
(Central Nara/Meals & souvenirs of Nara)
Try hot kama-meshi while taking in the superb view of Todai-ji Temple and Mt. Wakakusa!
Naraya is one of the restaurants located in Yume-Kaze Plaza. The second floor is a café/restaurant space where diners can enjoy a superb view of Todai-ji Temple and Mt. Wakakusa. Naraya’s most recommended dish is their kama-meshi, a rice dish cooked in a small iron pot with various toppings. Another recommendation is Yamato-cha udon noodles, cooked with locally grown green tea powder which turns the noodles bright green. There is a souvenir shop on the first floor where an array of Nara’s goods and souvenirs are available.
Special kama-meshi with miso soup: 980 yen, with udon noodle: 1,180 yen / Mushroom kama-meshi with miso soup: 780 yen, with udon noodle: 980 yen / Yamato-cha matcha udon noodle (chilled or hot): 650 yen
Across from Nara National Museum, a 15-min. walk from Kintetsu Nara Sta. (in the Yume-Kaze Plaza)
Open everyday: 11:00-17:00 (shop: 10:00-18:00)
(Central Nara/Izakaya & bar)
A bar with a wide range of drinks, Japanese dishes and finest quality Japanese beef dishes
Located very close from Kintetsu Nara Station, ninetrack is always crowded with locals and regular customers. It is a relatively small and stylish bar (6 counter seats and 5 tables) and has a full range of drink options. Recommended is a cocktail made with MONIN liquor (55 different kinds of flavors). Tell the bartender your preference and he will make a perfect drink just for you. What makes ninetrack even more special is that they offer some excellent Japanese dishes as their chef specializes in Japanese cuisine. Dishes using finest quality Miyazaki beef are a must-try (sashimi, broiled, beef stew, etc.; changed daily)! Both the drinks and the food selection at ninetrack is outstanding.
Antipasto: 3 kinds: 480 yen, 5 kinds: 630 yen / Pasta: from 680 yen / Cocktail: from 580 yen / wine: glass: 500 yen, bottle: 2,800 yen / Miyazaki beef course (with all-you-can-drink): 8,000 yen (reservation required)
Basement floor of Prime Bldg., across from Kintetsu Nara Sta.
Open:18:00-3:00 (L.O. 2:30); men only groups are not accepted between 18:00 and 21:00 / Closed: Mon.
Hot and tasty, original & unique Okonomi-yaki
Okonomi-yaki is a popular dish of Japan, particularly in the Kansai region. It can best be described as a thin, flat pancake with chopped cabbage cooked on a hot plate with bits of meat, seafood and other toppings. Located on the main tourist route, a few-minute walk from Sarusawa Pond, there is a pretty Okonomi-yaki restaurant named PARCO. They offer a wide range of Okonomi-yaki, from typical to original. A popular selection among foreign visitors is the one using fine quality, extra thin beef used for shabu-shabu. PARCO’s original “Italian” and “American” style (using cheese and bacon) are also very popular. During the winter months, oyster & negi (green onion) Okonomi-yaki is worth trying as a seasonal specialty.
Okonomi-yaki: with shabu-shabu beef: 950 yen, Italian: 850 yen, American: 850 yen, Gyu suji (simmered beef) & negi (green onion): 830 yen / fried noodle: chow-mein (Chinese-style soy sauce flavor): 600 yen, with pork: 650 yen / tomato salad: 450 yen; pork omelet: 550 yen
About 2-min. walk to the south from Sarusawa Pond, across from Hotel Sunroute Nara
Open:11:30-14:30, 17:00-21:00 / Closed:Mon.
(Central Nara/Original cuisine using vegetables, millet, salty rice mold)
Relaxing café and dining moment in an atmospheric old Japanese house
PINOCCHIO is a relaxing and modern café and dining establishment located in a 100-year-old traditional Japanese house. You will need some time to decide what to order as PINOCCHIO offers a variety of menu options: pizza, pasta, rice omelet, pilaf (fried rice with toppings), doria (grilled rice with white sauce), and more. Many locals and tourists have been fans of PINOCCHIO for many years since their opening in 1968. Their home-made tube cake of the day is very popular. Try their freshly baked fluffy tube cake with home-roasted coffee for a break during your sightseeing in Nara.
Rice omelet: 680 yen / Spaghetti peperoncino: 680 yen / Tomato & cheese pizza: 735 yen / Rice bowl topped with deep-fried beef fillet: 780 yen
A 5-min. walk from JR Nara Sta., on the south side of Sanjo
Open:11:00-22:00 (L O: 21:30) / Closed:Thurs.
(Central Nara/Original cuisine using vegetables, millet, salty rice mold)
A variety of hearty and healthy dishes for your complete contentment
Hana is in a quiet local residential area a little away from the main tourist area. However, Hana, situated in an old Japanese house, is full of light and warmth. Dishes you will enjoy at Hana are all healthy and will appeal to both your body and mind. They use vegetables that are directly brought from local farmers and a variety of millets with some meat (vegetarians welcome too!). Instead of sugar and salt, they use a special salty fermented rice and raisins as seasonings which takes more time and effort to cook, but will make the dishes even more tasty. Each dish is served separately on a small plate. Take time to fully enjoy Hana’s special taste and hearty food.
Lunch course: 2,480 yen, 3,580 yen / Dinner course: 2,700 yen, 3,800 yen, 4,300 yen / *Lunch course include about 12 dishes (seasonal soup, fried dish, salad, home-made bacon, vegetarian sushi, rice, dessert, etc.). *Vegetarians and vegans welcome!
Take Nara Kotsu Bus #4 from Kintetsu Nara Sta. and get off at Takabatake-jutaku and walk about 10-min.
Open:11:30~, 17:30~ (dinner time open only Fri., Sat., Sun.) / Closed:Wed., Thurs.
(Central Nara/Matcha green tea & tea ceremony experience)
Feel the Japanese spirit with a bowl of matcha green tea
A small but wonderful space that lets you experience the world of Japanese culture opened this summer in the nostalgic Naramachi area. You can experience the world of tea ceremony and the fine taste of matcha green tea. The owner, Mr. Hirano, is a tea ceremony master and he carefully prepares a bowl of matcha green tea for each customer in the manner of traditional tea ceremony. The first floor is all table-and-chair-style seats, so don’t worry about sitting on the floor for a long time! There is a real tea ceremony room on the second floor. You can watch the procedure of tea ceremony by Mr. Hirano or even can try it by yourself. The taste of fine and mild (not too bitter!) matcha perfectly compliments their home-made Japanese sweets.
Matcha green tea with ohagi dumpling: 753 yen / Tea ceremony experience (watch the ceremony): 1,000 yen / Tea ceremony experience (try yourself): with ohagi: 980 yen; with small sweet: 880 yen /
Tea bowls and other ceramics are also displayed and sold.
A 5-min. walk to the southeast from Gango-ji Temple
Open:10:00-18:00 / Closed:Wed.
(Central Nara/French cuisine)
Unique mixture of Japanese and Western in dishes and interior
A short walk from the main Sanjo Street, there is a unique restaurant in a narrow lane. Geppoh is a French restaurant, though it doesn’t look so from its old style Japanese entrance. The building used to be a soba noodle shop and Geppoh’s owner decided to use the original Japanese-style counter seats in the front space of the restaurant. Then, when you step into the other side, there are western-style table seats in a room decorated with artworks. The Lunch Set is reasonably priced from 750 yen. Popular Hana course includes a choice of 6 main dishes (recommended is the incredibly delicate beef cheek meat stewed in red wine). Other a la carte dishes are also available.
Lunch: A set: 750 yen (soup or miso soup, salad, main dish, bread or rice) / B set: 1,300 yen (plus dessert) / Beef stew set: 2,000 yen / Dinner: Hana course: 3,500 yen (hors d'oeuvre, soup, main dish, bread or rice, dessert, coffee); choose from one of 6 main dishes (fried shrimp, stewed cow’s cheek meat with red wine, white fish sauté, etc.) / Steak course: 3,150 yen
About 5 min. walk to the south along Konishi Sakura St. from Kintetsu Nara Sta.
Savor the finest quality Japanese beef and fresh seafood in relaxing Japanese atmosphere
Just next to Gango-ji Temple, one of the World Heritage temples in Nara, in the nostalgic Naramachi area, stands an excellent restaurant: Tanaka. Here you can enjoy Nara’s local beef and other finest quality Japanese beef as well as fresh seafood brought directly from the port and Nara’s locally grown vegetables. Each table is equipped with an open hearth and customers can grill their own ingredients. The dinner course includes grilled Japanese beef as the main dish and appetizer, seafood, salad and dessert. You will be amazed by the rich taste and tenderness of their beef. The one plate lunch (beef with some Japanese dishes) is very popular. Enjoy both the luxury taste and atmosphere at Tanaka.
Tanaka’s special dinner course: 5,000-12,000 yen / Lunch plate: 2,000 yen (dessert set: plus 800 yen) / Nara beef lunch course: 5000 yen / Meat, seafood, vegetables and other a la carte menus are available.
About 10 min. walk from Kintetsu Nara Sta., across from Gango-ji Temple
(Central Nara/Nara’s pickles, Japanese meals & café)
Enjoy the taste of Nara in a traditional Japanese setting with spacious garden
This restaurant used to be a Japanese pickle production shop and factory. Here you can enjoy typical Japanese meals including their special pickles. You won’t believe you are in just one restaurant as they have seats in a traditional Japanese room, a renovated massive storage area, a spacious salon room with fine views and a garden terrace. A recommended selection is the Otsukemono Gozen set which includes about 10 different kinds of pickles from typical Nara pickles to unique seasonal ones. Other set menus including sushi and udon noodles, matcha green tea with sweets or beer and locally brewed sake are also available. On a sunny day, have a tea or drink on their bright garden terrace and enjoy a relaxing break during your exploration of Nara.
Otsukemono gozen pickle set: 1,400 yen / Ashibi gozen set: 1,500 yen / Udon noodle set: 1,000 yen / Matcha green tea & Japanese sweet: 800 yen / Nara’s locally brewed sake: from 700 yen
A 15-min. walk from Kintetsu Nara Sta., walk through the Mochiidono Shopping Arcade and enter Namachi area
Japanese dishes and fine sake in an old Japanese folk house
Ryozanpaku has offered excellent Japanese dishes using Nara’s and other area’s seasonal delicacies and locally brewed sake for 40 years. From a multi-course kaiseki to unique a la carte dishes, they regularly offer more than 70 options. The reasonably priced weekend lunch set is also popular. Ryozanpaku’s appeal lies not only in the dishes but also in the atmosphere. You will feel as if you are visiting an old village folk house upon seeing the wooden furniture, traditional decorations, thick overhead beams, etc.. Each dish faithfully illustrates their chef’s creativity and expertise.
Oyster hotpot with miso-based soup: 1,100 yen / Assorted sashimi of the day: 1,600 yen / Tofu steak: 550 yen / Assorted seasonal tempura: 850 yen / Weekend special lunch set: 1,500 yen
Open:11:30-14:30 (reservation required for weekday lunch), 17:00-23:00 (L.O. 22:30) /
A 10-min. walk from JR and Kintetsu Nara Sta., turn to the south at Yasuragi-no-michi and turn to the west at the third narrow lane
Soft and fresh tofu dishes in a classical Japanese house
Kondo specializes in tofu cuisine. No wonder. Their tofu comes from a shop which has offered fresh tofu for 60 years. Set in a traditional house in the historical Naramachi area, here customers can enjoy a wide range of tofu and yuba (soymilk skin) dishes. You will be amazed by how many different tastes there are to experience! Kondo’s tofu uses 100% Japanese soy beans. One of the unique dishes calls for diners to warm up tofu in soy milk at the table. Savor the very simple yet rich taste of tofu itself.
Lunch course: Yuki: 2,000 yen, Tsubaki: 3,200 yen (with hand-made yuba)
Dinner course: Tofu course: 4,200 yen (12 tofu dishes and dessert), Beef shabushabu course: 6,800 yen (7 tofu dishes and beef shabushabu)
Open: 11:00-14:30, 17:30-20:00 (reservation recommended for lunch time and necessary for dinner time) / Closed: Mon. (open on national holidays and close next day)
About 15 min. walk from Kintetsu Nara Sta., west of Goryo Shrine
(Central Nara /Japanese style bar)
A nostalgic Japanese style izakaya bar in a backstreet
Kyo-ya has a traditional Japanese atmosphere in every way starting with the building itself which is an old Japanese house. There are horigotatsu (sunken floor) table seats so customers don’t have to worry about sitting on the floor for a long time. Kyo-ya’s dishes use a lot of Nara and Japan specialties: Nara chicken, sashimi, tempura, grilled fish, meat and more. Their summer specialty is hamo conger eel while in winter fugu blowfish is the seasonal selection. If you are unsure of what dishes to select, consider trying Kyo-ya’s recommended course. They will never disappoint you!
Tori-yaki grilled chicken: 525 yen/ Kyo-ya’s recommended course: 2,100 yen / Draft beer: 525 yen
About 10 min. walk from Kintetsu Nara Sta., enter Mochiidono Center Arcade and turn left at the third narrow lane
(Central Nara /Thai cuisine)
Unique combination of Nara’s local specialties and Thai tastes
RAHOTSU’s Thai and Asian dishes are simple yet each one accentuates the fine taste of the ingredients. Curiously, both Thai and Japanese cuisine employs common cooking methods. Here you can try original dishes which combine the best of Nara’s local products and Thai dishes, for example, Miwa somen (super thin flour noodle) in tom yam kung soup. Another appealing option is their curry made with ancient rice, Japanese pepper and lotus root, all of which existed in the Nara period (8th century).
Tom yam kung (spicy Thai soup) with somen noodle: 900 yen / 1300-year curry and rice (using ancient rice and Nara’s local products): 800 yen
Open: 11:30-14:30, 17:30-22:00 / Closed: Mon.
Across from the Old Daijo-in Temple Garden
(Central Nara /French cuisine)
Authentic French cuisine overlooking a superb view of Nara
La Terrasse is a French restaurant located on the slope of Mount Wakakusa with a fine view of Nara city. In the autumn, the autumn leaves will add color to your dining experience. The walls are all made of glass creating a bright daytime interior. Their chief chef formerly worked in the 2-star Michelin restaurant in France and the Ritz Carlton Osaka. Truly an unforgettable setting during your exploration of Nara in which to experience a superb full-course meal of French cuisine using seasonal delicacies.
Lunch A: hors d'oeuvre, soup, fish or meat dish, dessert, coffee or tea: 3,675 yen / Dinner A: hors d'oeuvre, soup, fish dish, meat dish, dessert, coffee or tea: from 7,875 yen / Today’s recommended dinner course: 10,500 yen
Open: 11:30-14:30, 18:00-21:00 / Closed: Tues.
In the Hilltop Terrace, a 5-min. walk from Kasuga Taisha Honden-mae bus stop
Nara’s local specialties reborn as Italian cuisine
PEPITA D’ORO’s owner chef spent several years cooking at various famous restaurants in Italy and Tokyo before returning to his hometown of Nara to open his own restaurant early this year. He selects many of Nara’s local foods in the creation of his original seasonal dishes. Here you can enjoy not only typical Italian cuisine but also imaginative versions of Nara’s specialties: Miyazaki chicken sauté with teriyaki sauce, curry with Nara’s ancient black rice, etc.. Try the unique tastes that only Pepita D’oro can offer you.
Dinner course: from 2,300 yen / Lunch: from 1,050 yen / A la carte: from 980 yen / Glass wine: from 750 yen
Open: 11:30-14:00 (L.O. 13:30), 18:00-20:00 (L.O. 20:30), seasonally changed
Closed: Mon., Tues. lunchtime and another 2 days a month irregularly
About 5-min. walk from Kintetsu Nara Sta., enter the Mochiidono Center Arcade and turn left at the second corner
Dining bar & cafe haco
(Central Nara /Bar & cafe)
A stylish dining bar with delicious food and drinks
Once you enter haco, what immediately grabs your attention will be the unique movable box style table seats. Of course, regular table seats and a bar counter are also available. For lunch, café, dinner and drinks at the bar… You will surely be satisfied with the moments you spend at haco at anytime. They have several kinds of foreign beers and more than 50 kinds of wines. haco’s menu offers about 60 dishes, principally Italian, but all exhibiting the chef’s creativity. They remain open until quite late so customers can enjoy their evening in Nara far into the night.
Lunch set of the day: 850 yen (1,280 yen with drink and soup) / Raw ham and parmigiano risotto: 780 yen / Aglio e olio peperoncino with shrimp: 1,480 yen/Glass wine: from 600 yen / Beer: from 500 yen / Cocktails: from 600 yen
Open: 11:00-15:00, 17:00-1:00 (until 3:00 on Sat., Sun., & national holidays)
2F of Isokawa Bldg., on the west side of Yasuragi-no-michi, north of Nara City Tourist Center
SAVAS Café produces more than 100 kinds of tube-cakes. One of their most popular is the maccha green tea tube-cake. Nara’s local green tea leaf powder is mixed in the cake and further sprinkled on the surface so that the cake emanates the fresh, rich aroma of green tea. Another recommended option is Hoji-cha brown tea jelly parfait. Hoji-cha brown tea jelly, maccha tube-cake and ice creams are all here amongst a delicious assortment of tempting treats!
Maccha green tea tube-cake set ( with a drink ) : 800 yen / Hoji-cha brown tea jelly parfait: 600 yen
Open: 10:00-20:00 / Closed: Wed.
About 10 min. walk to the east from JR Nara Sta. and turn to the south at Yasuragino-michi st., and on the right side
(Central Nara /Teppan-yaki & Okonomi-yaki)
Nara’s top quality local beef and sake!
The name of the restaurant “JUJU” represents the sound when meat and other ingredients are grilled on an iron plate. Meat, seafood, vegetables and Okonomi-yaki (like a Japanese pizza) are grilled on a large iron plate. One of the must-try dishes on the menu at JUJU is Nara’s locally grown Yamato beef and either a simple steak or the hamburger steak is recommended. Customers can enjoy not only beef but also Nara’s local pork and chicken at JUJU. Watching how the staff grills the food is fun, too!
Yamato pork cutlet lunch: 1,300 yen
Yamato beef hamburger steak lunch: 1,300 yen
Yamato beef diced steak lunch: 2,100 yen
*lunch menus are served 30 sets a day.
Open: 12:00-14:30 (closed Mon. & Tues.), 17:00-24:00 / Closed: Tues. (open if Tues. is a national holiday)
On the 2nd floor of the building, a 5-min. walk from JR Nara Sta., on the south side of Sanjo Street, across from a park
(Central Nara /Indian curry)
Indian atmosphere, with classic Indian music & original curry
The melodious and sublime classical music of India in a traditional Japanese house which used to be a geisha residence… RAGAMALA, located very very narrow lane behind bustle shopping street, is an utterly unique and one-of-a-kind restaurant. Every dish is perfect for vegetarians (egg and milk products are used in some dishes). Due to less salt and oil, their chickpea curry and vegetable curry are very light yet exquisite flavoured. Come to RAGAMALA and enjoy a slow and delectable world.
Lunch set: 850 yen
Chickpea curry: 850 yen
Vegetable curry: 900 yen
Chapati (Inidian thin bread): 200 yen
Shrikhand cake (banana cake with Indian yogurt cream): 400 yen
Chai: 450 yen
Open: 11:40-15:00, 17:30-20:00 (until 21:00 on Sat., Sun., national holidays) / Closed: Tues. & Fri. (open on national holidays)
In the Mochiidono Shopping Arcade, about 50 meters from north entrance, turn left at the very narrow lane, on the right side
(Central Nara /Sushi & Japanese sweets)
A new food creation using Nara’s traditional ingredients
Umemori offers unique kinds of sushi: Wasabi-ha sushi and ancient Anara sushi. Sushi rice is flavored with special plum vinegar. A ball of sushi rice topped with mackerel, salmon, eel or shrimp is wrapped with a green wasabi (horse radish) leaf. Anara sushi uses ancient red rice topped with Nara’s special pickles and conger eel. In addition to its unique sushi, Umemori also offers original sweets of which wasabi ice cream is the most highly recommended.
Wasabi-ha sushi (mackerel, salmon, eel, shrimp): 280 yen
Ancient Anara sushi: 320 yen
Set of Wasabi-ha sushi & Anara sushi: 1,440 yen
Rolled Wasabi-ha sushi (mackerel, salmon, conger eel): 1,500 yen
Naramachi ice cream (wasabi, ancient rice, black bean): 350 yen
About 200 meters to the south of Sarusawa Pond, across from Hotel Sunroute Nara
(Central Nara /Tai-yaki Japanese sweet)
Try savoring proverbial sweet of Japan
Tai-yaki is a proverbial Japanese sweet loved by everyone. “Tai” is a sea bream and tai-yaki is like a pancake in the shape of a sea bream filled with sweet red bean paste. Kotaro’s tai-yaki differs from the common form as it is a “jumping sea bream” which represents auspiciousness. Every tai-yaki is carefully baked by hand of the owner. Kotaro is housed in a classic Japanese residence adding a special atmosphere to the enjoyment of savoring this traditional Japanese taste.
Tai-yaki: 100 yen
Home-baked bread using natural yeast and weekly-changed sweets are availably on Sat. & Sun.
Open: 11:00-19:00 / Closed: Mon.
About 15-min. walk from Kintetsu Nara Sta. to the south along Yasuragi no Michi, the shop is one street east from Yasuragi no Michi
(Central Nara / Chinese Home Dishes)
Offering Chinese dishes for 38 years in a nostalgic Japanese market
Taiko is a small Chinese eatery in a nostalgic, very narrow and small market. Don’t hesitate to open the door! The owner couple has welcomed customers with delicious food and warmth for 38 years. Everything you order at Taiko is cooked by the owner or his wife and comes in large servings, full of vegetables, full of their affection and what is more, very reasonably priced. They offer almost 100 different dishes and are open until late! Take your seats at the counter and enjoy talking to the owner and the local people who have cherished Taiko for many years.
Tsubai Ramen Chinese noodle in soup: 580 yen
Ramen with simmered pork hams: 800 yen
Fried rice: 600 yen
Rice bowls: from 750 yen (beef, chicken, fried egg, etc.)
Lunch set: from 750 yen
About 200 meters south from Sanjo Street, in the Tsubai Market across from Tsubai Elementary School
Open: 12:00-14:00, 17:00-24:00
Coffee & Books PAVILION
(Central Nara / Cafe & Worldwide picture books)
Delicious coffee, warmth and picture books from around the world
As you walk into the extremely narrow lane, you may feel nervous that you have trespassed on someone’s private property. However, this is where you will discover Pavilion. Formerly an old house, the building has been reborn as a cozy, nice café. Upon entering, you will immediately notice a number of picture books displayed along the wall. The owner, Ms. Ohnishi, has travelled the world in search for these picture books from Czech, Germany, France, England, Scandinavian countries, etc. Flipping through their pages while enjoying home-roasted coffee or tea, you can enter into a colorful and nostalgic world. The owners always offer a warm welcome and are happy to chat with any customers who find their way to the cafe.
Home-roasted coffee: 400 yen
Café au lait: 450 yen
Tea: cup 400 yen, pot 580 yen
Cheese cake/ Gâteau au chocolat: 420 yen each
Cake set: from 700 yen
Picture books: from 3,000 yen
Turn north at the corner next to the Washington Hotel, walk for about 200 meters and then turn into the narrow lane on the left
Experience the real taste of traditional Japanese Soba
Soba are noodles made from buckwheat flour and symbolize one of the most traditional and familiar dishes in Japan. These days, buckwheat is generally ground by machine but at Momoyozuki, you can try soba noodles made from hand-ground buckwheat. Compared to conventionally produced soba, the hand-ground noodles have a rougher texture and contain a much stronger flavor of the buckwheat itself. You can also try machine-ground noodles if you like, so why don’t you try both and taste the difference?
Hand-ground soba: 1,050 yen (10 servings available a day)
Soba with ume sour plum pickles & nori seaweed (Soy sauce- based soup poured over): 945 yen
Soba with yuzu citrus & Japanese pepper (dipping in a soup style): 945 yen
Across from Kintetsu Nara Sta., one minute walk to the north from the taxi stop on the north side of the street
Open: 11:30-14:30, 15:30-19:30
Closed: Tues evening. and all day on Wed.
Shokusai Bo Kichiza Denemon
(Central Nara/seasonal Japanese cuisine)
Best tastes of the season from all over Japan
Kichiza Denemon respects the superior taste of seasonal ingredients, for example, sashimi, using fresh seafood of the day. The recommended selection for lunch is Kichiza Gozen which includes 8 kinds of Obanzai (Japanese home dishes) and the Hyakuso-zen set with 7 kinds of Obanzai and an appetizer. For dinner, the Irodori no Bon set goes perfectly with sake as does the Nanashi no Gonbei course. Also try their wide range of local sake from Nara and northern Japan and the shochu distilled spirit.
Lunch: Hyakuso-zen: 1,800 yen
Kichiza Gozen: 1,300 yen
Dinner: Irodori no Bon set (5 dishes; sashimi, grilled seafood, etc.): 2,100 yen
Authentic Italian pasta using Italian grandma’s recipe in Nara
BEKKAN PIATTO is a small and stylish Italian restaurant. Some Italian visitors are not inclined to try pasta in Japan because they believe their pasta at home is unequaled. However, even Italians who know the real taste of pasta praise BEKKAN PIATTO’S dishes! Their homemade tomato sauce is particularly outstanding. The recipe was used by Japan’s first female Italian chef who moved to Italy more than 70 years ago. Not only standard pasta dishes but also seasonal menus, cheese, raw ham and wine selections should be tried. Ask their staff for that day’s special (English spoken).
Pescatore: 1,600 yen
Bongole bianco: 1,300 yen
Prosciutto & salami: 1 kind: from 600 yen, 3 kinds: from 1,200 yen
Glass wine: from 600 yen
2F of Flats Konishi Bldg., on the north side of Konishi Sakura St., next to VIVRE shopping building
Open: 11:00-14:00 (L.O.), 18:00-21:30 (L.O.)
(Central Nara / Conveyor-belt Sushi)
Cheap, delicious and fun! Enjoy “Conveyor-belt sushi” in Nara
Fresh seafood is delivered directly from the port everyday and become delicious sushi under the skilled hands of experienced sushi chefs. Not only standard toppings (tuna, yellow tail, shrimp, squid, rolled sushi) but also extra special toppings and original sushi are popular. There are always 100 kinds of sushi waiting for you! Most of the sushi on the conveyor-belt are priced at just 126 yen. If you feel like trying some with a gorgeous and outstanding taste, try the special orders for extra taste!
Sushi: from 126 yen/plate
Special sushi: from 320 yen/plate
Draft beer: from 340 yen
In the Higashimuki Shopping Arcade, on the East side (1-min. from Kintetsu Nara Sta.)
Comfort with excellent Japanese/Chinese tea in a classic machiya traditional house
Shinju-an specializes in Japanese and Chinese tea. The owner collects a number of unique and aromatic tea leaves from famous tea producing areas around Japan. There are always about 50 kinds of tea leaves for you to select from. The water temperature and time of steeping the leaf is essential to enjoy the best aroma and taste of the tea. Use a little set of provided tea utensils and try to make the best tasting tea for yourself!
Cake & tea set (Changed monthly): from 650 yen
Extra fine Yamato (Nara) tea: 650 yen
Ban-cha, Hoji-cha, black tea: from 500 yen
Lunch set (beef stew with rice, salad, dessert, tea): 850 yen
In Nara-machi area, across from the Naramachi Museum
Taste Nara’s seasonal and fresh vegetables in traditional Japanese cuisine
Located in the Hotel Sun Route Nara, Obana offers traditional Japanese fine cuisine using seasonal vegetables and ingredients from Nara. The menu changes monthly. Obana lunch sets are very popular for their price and of course, tasty dishes. Try their special buffet-style breakfast including the cha-gayu (rice porridge cooked with Japanese tea) and other Japanese dishes, and the kaiseki course for dinner. The restaurant is of course open for visitors too. Visit Obana and try the tastes of the season.
Buffet-style (breakfast): 1,260 yen
Obana set (lunch): 2,800 yen
Other lunch menus: from 1,800 yen
Kaiseki course (dinner): from 5,000 yen
On the southeast of Sarusawa Pond, about 200 meters on the left
Enjoy Sizzling Hot and Tasty Yakitori, “Japanese-style BBQ Chicken Kebabs”
Yakitori is a popular Japanese dish. Chicken pieces are skewered on a stick and roasted with a sweet soy sauce-based sauce or salt. From a counter seat, you will enjoy watching up-close how the chefs quickly and skillfully cook your yakitori. You can order just one skewer of yakitori (from 120 yen) or try the chef’s selection set menu (from 2,500 yen) which includes the best of everything! Salad, drinks and other a la carte dishes from the menu are also worth trying.
You can order just one skewer of yakitori (from 120 yen) or try the set menu (from 2,500 yen) which includes the best of everything and one drink!
A 3-min. walk to the northeast of JR Nara Sta., on the east side of the street
Original hearty cuisine using full of Mother nature blessing
The main feature of Hiyori’s dishes is vegetables. However, Hiyori’s vegetables go far beyond your expectation. Everyone who has experienced Hiyori’s vegetable dishes can’t help being amazed with the deep, rich taste of vegetables which were grown in their local and exclusive farm. In addition to the vegetables, the owner traveled around Japan and has strictly selected the finest quality of meat and fish. From a full volume course menu to à la carte menus (vegetables, meat, fish, etc.), you can decide how you will enjoy Hiyori.
Yamato-yasai (Nara’s local vegetables) Kaiseki course
Kakashi: 3,675 yen (about 7 vegetable dishes with 1 main: river fish/chicken/shrimp)
Mogura: 4,305 yen (about 7 vegetable dishes with 2 mains: river fish/chicken/shrimp)
Ubutuchi: 8,400 yen (about 7 vegetable dishes, Japanese beef fillet steak with 1 main: river fish/chicken/shrimp)
Yasai-biyori: 1,575 yen (about 7 vegetable dishes, rice, miso soup, pickles, dessert)
Hidamari: 2,625 yen (several vegetable dishes, grilled river fish, rice, miso soup, pickles, dessert)
A 15-min. walk from JR or Kintetsu Nara Sta., northwest of Gango-ji Temple
Hearty & tasty original muffins by the gourmet owner
Going up a narrow, steep stairs to the 3rd floor of the building, there is a cozy café always filled with a scent of freshly baked muffins. At 3rd place café, all you will enjoy is owner’s home-made muffins, from basics (blueberry, raspberry, banana) to Nara’s unique using Nara’s green tea, and seasonal fruits (fig, mango, pear for summer). The owner herself is a gourmet who works as a food writer and coordinator as well. Take one or more muffins from 3rd place café with hearty taste and the owner’s affection to Nara, inside or outside of the café.
Muffins: from 250 yen
Muffin and drink set: 600-700 yen
3F of Fukuda Bldg., on the west side of Yasuragino-michi St., about 20 meters to the north from Nara City Tourist Center
(Central Nara/ Dining and shopping complex facility)
Nara’s first dining and shopping complex opened near Nara Park
Yume-Kaze Plaza is a newly constructed large scale shopping and dining complex site which opened this year near Todai-ji Temple. There are 12 shops and restaurants and each one has their own unique attraction and specialty (kudzu starch dishes of Yoshino, Kakinoha sushi, Japanese sweets, Japanese noodles SOBA, hand-woven hemp products, Nara’s local sake, local fresh vegetables and fruits, okonomi-yaki, tako-yaki, railroad diorama buffet, Italian restaurant, café and more!). Visit Yume-Kaze Plaza and enjoy your Nara stay even more.
Shunka Manyo Tenpyoan (Japanese sweets and café), Warabe Yorokobi An (home made Japanese noodles SOBA), Yoshino Honkudzu Kurokawa Honke (new and traditional Japanese confections & café dining), Shimazu (seasonal Japanese cuisine), Yamato café BAN INOUE (Japanese hemp products/crafts and café), Silk Road (railroad diorama/buffet/bar), Monzen Ichiba (Nara’s fresh vegetables, fruits and products), Nara Mahoroba Daibutsu Purin Honpo (caramel custard and sweets), Izasa (traditional Nara sushi & restaurant), Ristorante i-lunga (Italian cuisine restaurant), Yumefusha (café & terrace), Naraya (Nara’s specialties & souvenirs), Ezuya (Nara character goods)
Across from the Nara National Museum
Open everyday: 9:30-22:00 (opening hour and closing day is different at each shop)
Discover the warm hospitality and cooking excellence of the owner-chef
Monsieur Pepe’s owner and chef used to be a piano teacher. One day she decided to change her career and took a course at the famous Le Cordon Bleu cooking school in Kobe. The mainly southern French dishes are full of her wholesome cooking style. The best recommendation is the Special Soup Lunch set, which includes assorted hors d'oeuvre, stewed vegetable soup, dessert and a drink. Monsieur Pepe’s blueberry tart is also very popular (only 8 available a day!).
Special soup lunch set: 1,680 yen
Blueberry tart set: 1,200 yen
Duck pastrami pasta: 1,200 yen
Glass wine: 500 yen
Hot wine: 700 yen
Across from Nara National Museum
Open: 11:00-18:00 (reservations required for dinner time)
A healthy and hearty time in the backstreets of historical Nara
Don’t miss finding this cozy restaurant in the narrow backstreets of Nara. Jyu Jyu is like a hideout, just for you. The owner wishes “to provide a gentle time for the body and heart”. Jyu Jyu’s menu is meat-free. All the dishes are original and full of vegetables, seafood and the owner’s creative ideas. Naturally, JyuJyu is popular with visitors to Nara. In addition to the regular menu, daily specials are available (ask the owner what they have on the day!).
Chijimi (Korean pancake with vegetables & seafood): 730 yen
Oden is a popular Japanese hot-pot dish. Vegetables, meat and seafood are cooked in a large pan with Japanese broth – flavored with sea kelp and dried bonito flakes. Every locality has its special oden taste. Yobareya offers Nara style oden with its own unique broth flavor and ingredients. There are also several kinds of local Nara sake which the shop manager has carefully selected for customers. Enjoy the perfect combination of hot steaming oden and sake!
Oden: from 200 yen, white radish: 250 yen, potato: 400 yen, meat-stuffed cabbage: 450
Roast beef of Nara’s local beef marinated in sake: 1,890 yen
Nara’s local sake: from 400 yen
In the Mochiidono Shopping Arcade, about 400 meters from the north entrance on the left side
Fusion Food IDEA JR Nara shop
(Central Nara/ Dining & bar)
Comfortable dining & bar with stylish lighting and interior
As the name of the restaurant suggests, I DE A comes from the English word “idea”, welcomes customers with a bunch of big and small ideas. For example, coasters set at women’s places have a special effect and reflect light from the bottom to make a romantic atmosphere. With IDEA’s unique approach and cooking techniques, regular ingredients are transformed into tasty. They also have their own restaurant rules. Sculling drinks and being rowdy is not allowed (if you do, you have to leave!). It may sound very strict but this is so that everybody can have a comfortable time at IDEA.
IDEA salad: 520 yen (full volume!)
Tacos with chorizo (spicy Spanish sausage): 480 yen
IDEA original pasta with thick broth: 680 yen
Drinks: from 260 yen
One minute walk from JR Nara Sta., walk along Sanjo St., on the right side, 3F of F & F Square Bldg.
Hiikiya is a popular Japanese style dining bar conveniently located just in front of JR Nara Station. You can watch how the chefs cook from the counter seats. Hiikiya offers a wide range of Japanese dishes: robata-yaki (grilled with hearth fire), teppan-yaki (grilled on an iron plate), sushi, deep-fried, oden hot-pot, and many more. In winter, the hot-pot menu is recommended.
Yakitori skewered chicken (2 pieces): from 294 yen
Small portion of hot-pot: 619 yen
Assorted sushi(5 pieces): 619 yen
Draft beer: 525 yen
In front of JR Nara Station
Open: everyday: weekdays:17:00-23:00 (L.O. 22:30), from 16:30 on Sat., Sun., holidays
The Wembley Crown
(Central Nara/English pub)
More than 30 kinds of beers from all over the world!
Come to The Wembley Crown and relax in Nara’s English country-style pub. Sport events such as soccer, tennis, and rugby are broadcast on the large size screen. You can enjoy more than 30 kinds of world beers as well as English home-style dishes. Find your favorite beer or try a variety of new brews while enjoying your visit to Nara.
Draft beer (Guiness): 800 yen
Japanese local beer “YONAYONA ALE”: 600 yen
English tea: 300 yen
Thursday is Ladies Day!
2F of Nishimura Bldg., a 3-min. walk from the north entrance of Mochiidono Center Arcade, on the east side
Delicious organic doughnuts created from specially selected ingredients
Floresta is a doughnut shop which started with the owners’ wish to “provide safe and delicious doughnuts for everyone.” They use specially selected ingredients only without food additives and chemicals. Their original doughnuts are always freshly cooked - the outside is crispy and the inside is very soft. Perfect for a tea break inside or takeout! Floresta’s doughnuts are full of the natural taste of fine ingredients and the sincere wishes of the staff to enjoy them.
Nature: 120 yen
Sugar: 120 yen
Chocolate: 140 yen
Drink set: 350 yen (with coffee/tea/milk)
On the north side of a narrow street connecting Higashimuki Shopping Arcade and Konishi Sakura St., 1-min. walk from Kintetsu Nara Sta
Open: 10:00-19:00 (closed when all doughnuts are sold out)
Space to enjoy a tea break and view fine Japanese ceramics
Tachibana’s original selection of ceramics includes classical forms as well as unique ceramic works by up-and-coming artists. During your Nara exploration, stop by Tachibana and enjoy a cup of coffee, tea or fine Japanese green tea with sweets, while chatting with the owner. Exhibitions are occasionally held in the gallery upstairs.
Nara-machi blend coffee: 400 yen
Tea: from 550 yen (served in pot)
Sencha or maccha green tea: 550 yen
Sweets: from 330 yen
About 20 meters to the east of the street between Mochiidono and Shimomikado Shopping Center, on the right side
Superb teppan-yaki cuisine in a luxurious atmosphere
There are two large counter tables (6 seats each) in front of the iron plate where Icho’s chef cooks your meal. At Icho, they don’t use rich flavored sauce but instead offer fine pepper, salt, grated wasabi (hot horse radish) and miso (fermented salty soy beans paste) to enhance the taste of the natural flavor of the food. Their seasonal special course is recommended.
Lunch: beef fillet steak set: 2,000 yen
Japanese black beef bento lunch box: 3,000 yen
Courses: from 5,000 yen
Dinner: courses: from 8,000 yen
Drinks: from 750 yen
Directly connected to the west exit of JR Nara Sta.
Enjoy Nara’s specialty, Cha-gayu in historical setting
Located close to the five-story pagoda of Kofuku-ji Temple, you can fully enjoy Nara’s traditional atmosphere and taste at Tou no Chaya. It was the first restaurant in Nara to offer Cha-gayu Japanese tea porridge about 40 years ago. Cha-ga-yu is very simple rice porridge cooked with fine Japanese tea. Tou no Chaya’s original souvenirs are also available (accessories, take-away instant Cha-gayu, etc.).
Cha-gayu lunch box: 3,150 yen (11:30-16:00)
Cha-gayu kaiseki courses: lunch: from 6,000 yen; dinner: from 8,000 yen
Cha-gayu for take-out: 500 yen (instant), 900 yen (recipe and a set of ingredients)
About 50 meters to the east from the five-story pagoda of Kofuku-ji Temple
Open: everyday: 11:30-21:00
(Central Nara/ Kama-meshi rice)
Nara 7-topping Kama-meshi is must-try
Shizuka has offered Kama-meshi, a traditional Japanese rice dish since 1959. An individual portion of rice is cooked in a small iron pot with a variety of toppings. The Nara 7-topping Kama-meshi with shrimp, conger eel, chicken, burdock, etc. is highly recommended. Special seasonal Kama-meshi menus are also available.
Nara 7-topping Kama-meshi: 1155 yen
Shizuka set: 2,310 yen (Nara 7 kinds Kama-meshi, appetizer, side dish, miso soup, pickles, fruit)
The entrance of apa apa café faces a very narrow street (look for a black motor bike!). You’ll find a cozy, relaxing space where you can feel comfortably at home. At lunch time, their large-portioned home-made bagel lunch set will satisfy you (with bagel of the day, salad, soup, fried potato, plus a drink). Check their wide ranging drink menu too!
Home-made bagle lunch set (12:00-15:00): 900 yen
Lunch of the day (12:00-15:00): 800 yen
Pizza, paste, rice dishes, etc.: from 700 yen
2F of Fujimoto Bldg., to the northwest of Tsubai Elementary School
Taste Kasuga’s original dishes using local Nara beef and chicken
Restaurant Kasuga is located in the Kasuga Hotel. Their dishes are quite simple, yet allow you to enjoy the real taste of natural ingredients in a traditional Japanese way. Many of their dishes are cooked with local Nara produce. One of the most popular and highly recommended set meals is the Nara-zen set which is full of the taste of Nara: local Yamato chicken, Kakinoha sushi (a piece of vinegar rice with a fillet of mackerel wrapped in a persimmon leaf), Yamato green tea noodle, and much more.
Nara-zen set: 2,100 yen
Manyo set (grilled Yamato beef and more): 2,100 yen
Manyo bento set: 2,100 yen
100-meters to the east of Kintetsu Nara Sta. (on the right side)
Original Japanese dishes using full of Nara ingredients
Kagariya specializes in original Japanese dishes using local Nara ingredients. The traditional Japanese style interior has a warm atmosphere. From reasonable, yet satisfying, lunch menus using Nara’s local chicken to more authentic course menus cooked by their chef with more than 30 years experience, Kagariya offers a wide range of choices. For dinner, course menus are recommended in order to enjoy each dish slowly and tastefully. Once you are here, you can’t leave Nara without visiting Kagariya at least once for an unforgettable dining experience in the ancient capital.
Rice bowl topped with teriyaki Yamato local chicken (lunch): 1,000 yen
Kama-meshi gozen (lunch): 1,500 yen
Kagariya gozen (lunch): 2,500 yen
Chef’s recommended kaiseki course: Uneme: 4,000 yen (10 dishes), Kagaribi: 5,500 yen (11 dishes)
A 5-min. walk to the west from Kintetsu Nara Sta., or a 5-min. walk to the north from JR Nara Sta.
(Yoshino area/ Kuzu dishes, kakinoha sushi, seasonal local cuisine)
Experience exquisite seasonal flavours in a hidden spot in Yoshino
Yoshino is famous for being one of the best cherry blossom viewing spots in Japan. However, the appeal of Yoshino is not only cherry blossoms in spring. At Shizuka-tei, you can enjoy tasteful dishes which reflect the seasonal beauty of Yoshino. In summer, natural grown ayu (sweet fish) or iwana (mountain trout) are must-try. What is more, udon noodles in thick kuzu (arrowroot starch) broth, kakinoha sushi (pieces of sushi rice with salted mackerel wrapped in a persimmon leaf) are specialties of Yoshino. If you are lucky to get a seat on the veranda, it will be an unforgettable day for you as you enjoy a fine meal and a grand view of Yoshino.
Kuzu udon noodle and tempura set: 1,200 yen
Kakinoha sushi (7 pieces): 1,050 yen
Other seasonal dishes are available
Across from Katte Shrine; 952 Yoshinoyama, Yoshino-cho, Yoshino-gun
Open: 9:00-18:00 (open from 8:00 on Sat. & Sun.)
To get to Yoshino, see the access information on pg 12.
(Central Nara / Japanese style bar)
Enjoy traditional ‘ochazuke’ in our Japanese style bar
Ochazuke is one of the most popular dishes with Japanese people. Japanese tea or tasty broth is poured over hot rice topped with seasonings. It has been a longtime favorite with people - a recipe for ochazuke appears in a book written in the early Edo period (1600-1868). You can choose from15 kinds of toppings for our special ‘dashi chazuke’. What is more, Fujin offers more than 100 different kinds of dishes on their Japanese bar-style menu, including reasonable lunch sets.
Fujin’s special broth chazuke: from 500 yen
Daily lunch set: 800 yen
Tompei-yaki (egg roll with pork): 580 yen
3 kinds of Sashimi: 980 yen
2F of Asakawa Harvest Bldg., on the east side of the north entrance of Higashimuki Shopping Arcade
Open everyday: 11:00-15:00, 17:00-24:00 (closed Mon. lunch time)
(Central Nara / Japanese Bar & Teppan-yaki grill dishes)
Meat, seafood, vegetables, and more. Enjoy a wide range of food grilled on an iron plate.
At Fusui from more than 70 kinds of dishes to choose from – take your time! Fusui offers a wide range of teppan-yaki (grilled food on an iron plate) using fresh seasonal ingredients as well as their original a la carte menu. They also serve over 100 different kinds of beverages including beer, wine, shochu (distilled Japanese vodka), local Nara sake, cocktails, soft drinks, and much more! Recommended is Fusui’s ‘grilled chicken meat balls with nankotsu (gristle)’.
Grilled chicken meat balls with gristle (Ontama tsukune teppan-yaki): 850 yen
Home-made fresh tofu: 580 yen
Seasonal fish sashimi: from 700 yen (3 kinds)
Course menu: from 2,500 yen (7 dishes)
2F of Manzoku-kan Bldg., a 3-min. walk from JR Nara Sta. to the east along Sanjo Street; the building is on your left
Open everyday: 11:30-14:00 (L.O.), 17:00-23:00 (L.O.)
(Horyu-ji Area/Traditional Japanese)
Try Shimura’s famous plum flavored udon noodles
Shimura offers unique udon dishes (thick noodles made from flour). The plum flavored or special salt flavored udon are famous in the area. The plum flavored udon kneaded with fresh plum fruit and shiso (perilla Japanese basil) are especially recommended! These udon noodles go well with Kakinoha sushi, one of Nara’s specialties - a piece of sushi topped with vinegared fish and wrapped in a persimmon leaf. Other large rice bowl dishes and set meals are available too.
Plum flavored udon with Kakinoha sushi: 735 yen
Salt flavored udon with Kakinoha sushi: 890 yen
Large rice bowl dishes: from 600 yen
Bento sets: from 780 yen
On the east side of the approach to Horyu-ji Temple
Open everyday: 10:00-17:00
Take a break in Wakakusa café during your visit to Nara
Wakakusa is a bright, fresh green color. As the name suggests, Café Wakakusa is filled with this color and also the owner’s favorite music. The owner and his wife welcome you with smiles. Their home-made crepe uses special butter, cheese and/or chocolate. Their original soft drinks using Japanese tea are definitely worth trying. Wakakusa is open until 22:00 and free Internet access is available (bring your laptop!).
Draft beer (Guinness & Yebisu): 400yen
Home-made crepes: from 350yen
1-min. walk from Kintetsu Nara Sta.; on the east side of Higashimuki Kita Shopping Street
Try the taste of the Nara period in a slow and comfortable atmosphere
Yumeichi Chaya is located right next to the Ishi-butai Ancient Tomb. Here you can try unique dishes made from a special rice called Kodai-mai, a type of ancient rice which is still grown in Asuka today. In the clear air of Asuka, the fresh seasonal vegetables used in the dishes taste even better. Kodai-mai Gozen sets (availability is limited) and Kuro-mai (black) rice and curry lunch sets are very popular and recommended. When the weather is nice, take a Shotoku bento lunch box or some Kodai-mai rice balls outside and have a picnic! Their café menu with desserts is also recommended for taking a short break in Asuka.
Kodai-mai Gozen Set: 1,050 yen
Curry and kuro-mai black rice: 840 yen
Shotoku bento lunch: 840 yen
Just west of the Ishibutai Park; 154-3 Shimasho, Asuka-mura, Takaichi-gun
Open: 11:00-16:00 (souvenir shop on the first floor is open from 10:00; open until 17:00 on Sat. & Sun.)
To get to Asuka, see the access information on pg 12.
Japanese Style Café Awogaki
(Central Nara/ Café)
Try Awogaki’s original sweets of Nara
Located in the Nara Nagomi-kan, a souvenir shop, you can enjoy original sweets by Awogaki’s experienced chef. One of the popular menus is Kaki (persimmon) cake using additive-free dried persimmons and persimmon liquor. Maccha rolled cake made from fine quality Nara maccha green tea and red beans are also recommended. Many other meal and drink menus are available as well.
Maccha (green tea) rolled cake: 320 yen
Kaki (persimmon) cake: 300 yen
Meals: from 1,300 yen
A 3-min. walk to the south of the Ichino Torii (first shrine gate) of the Kasuga Grand Shrine, on the left side
Open: 10:00-19:00 (Awogaki is open the same hours)