Chihana, a Michelin 3 Stars Restaurant

For the Saint Valentin’s dinner, we decided to go somewhere special and choose Chihana, a Michelin Three Stars restaurant.

This restaurant offers some of the finest in Kyoto traditional seasonal cuisine. It is a very small, intimate place with mainly a counter for eight guests and two private rooms (four and eight guests).  The style is what is called “Itamae Kappo” (板前割烹) or chef’s cuisine. Guests can directly see how master chef Katsuyoshi Nagata prepares the dishes in front of them.

We wanted to be alone and reserved the small room, but many people prefer the counter to see the chef’s work and discuss about the food they eat.

The restaurant setting is nothing special but the location is great, just a few minutes from Gion Shijo station.  They got their Michelin Three Stars thanks to the quality of the food and their cooking skill, I guess.

We took the basic Chihana Course and it was wonderful.

 

千花  Chihana – Our Menu

 

Sole escabesh with grapefruits and dailily

Amuse-bouche – Sole escabesh with grapefruits and dailily

Boiled Sole and sole jelly with lily roots

2.Boiled Sole and sole jelly with lily roots

Boiled chicken and lotus roots

3.Boiled chicken and lotus roots

 

Soba with shell fish

4.Soba with shell fish

Tempura with dry shrimp and vegetables

5.Tempura with dry shrimp and vegetables

Clear soup with fishcake

6.Clear soup with fishcake

 

Sashimi of Sole and Tuna fish with salted Seaweed

7.Sashimi of Sole and Tuna fish with salted Seaweed

Sashimi of Sole fish with salted Seaweed
The dish I really appreciated was the Sole and Tuna Fish Sashimi with dried salty seaweed.  Eating the soft sole fish with the hard and salty seaweed (without any soy sauce!) was an interesting mixture of taste and texture.

 

6 little dishes: Sesame Tofu, Green Beens, Boiled Tuna, Boiled little fishes, Sweet potato chips, Baby fish with vegetables
8.6 little dishes: Sesame Tofu, Green Beens, Boiled Tuna, Boiled
little fishes, Sweet potato chips, Baby fish with vegetables

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Baked fish 9.Baked fish
Chinese radish and fried tofu 10.Chinese radish and fried tofu

Pickled vegetables 11.Pickled vegetables

Sticky rice with pickled cucumber 12.Sticky rice with pickled cucumber

 

 

 

 

13.And we finished this feast with a Mixed Fruit juice

 

Each one of the dishes of the Chihana course meal was like a finely tuned instrument in a symphony of flavor and texture.  A memorable experience!

(We heard about some mixed reviews this restaurant had on TripAdvisor. We enjoyed our dinner very much and this is the reason we’re mentioning and recommending this place.  No more, no less.  Kyo Kaiseki food may be surprising at time and may not be for everyone. But as they say, your mileage may vary.)

For more information and for reservation (required), check out the Chihana web site.

Address:

584 Minamigawa, Gionmachi, Higashiyama-ku, Kyoto

TEL:075-561-2741

 

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