Your Guide to Kyoto’s Best Desserts

From matcha parfaits to red bean soups, Kyoto’s best sweet treats can be found at these traditional tea houses and cafés.

Photo: Gourmet Otaku

Tsujiri Tea House

Established in 1978, Tsujiri Tea House is among the grand dames when it comes to traditional tea houses in Kyoto. Crafted from finely ground matcha powder, popular menu items include the chiffon cake parfait, matcha shaved ice, and matcha smoothie.

573–3 Giomachi Minamigawa, Higashiyama-ward, Kyoto

Photo: Valchoa

Patisserie Gion Sakai

Located on the same stretch as Tsujiri Tea House is Pastisserie Gion Sakai, a dessert shop featuring Japanese sweets with European influence. They’re best known for dainty treats like strawberry shortcake and fruit tart. Don’t leave without a box of their crunchy Kyo Gokoron cookies. 

215 Nakano-cho, Higashiyama-ward, Kyoto

Photo: Moshi Moshi Nippon

Ito Kyuemon 

With its origins dating back to the Edo era, Ito Kyuemon houses both a tea café and a retail shop. Here, you’ll find traditional matcha dessert sets featuring rice cakes and sweetened bean paste, new-fangled creations like the best-selling matcha parfait, and even savory matcha soba noodles.

Aramaki-19–3 Todo, Uji-city, Kyoto

Photo: The Mommist

Gion Kinana

Blink and you’ll miss it – Gion Kinana is tucked away in a narrow lane next to the iconic Hanamijoji Dori street and a firm favorite among locals and travelers alike. The ice cream shop features ice cream made from kinako (soy bean powder) in flavors like matcha and red bean.

570-119 Higashiyama-ku, Gion-machi Minami-gawa

Photo: QLI Travel

Kagizen Yoshifusa 

A visit to the traditional sweet shop Kagizen Yoshifusa is a quintessential experience for any visitors to Kyoto. The highlight is the serene tea room, where one can sip on thick and frothy matcha tea while savouring the famed kuzukiri — arrowroot noodles served with sweet brown sauce.

264 Gion machi Kita gawa, Higashiyama-ku, Kyoto

 

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