When the crowds get too much, head over to the east of Kyoto to this fabulous wheat noodle specialist just a stone's throw from Eikando and Nanzenji Temples, and the Philosopher's Path. This is where the famous Kyoto ryorinin chefs come for lunch on their days off, and for our money - all 900 yen of it - this is the best curry udon in town.
We especially like the niku-iri version, with beef, though all Hinode's noodles are great. Ohsumi-san, the third generation owner, pictured here, is particularly friendly. His staff make lots of effort to at least say 'welcome' in a variety of European and Asian languages.
Hinode's location, in a quiet residential district is a perfect antidote to Gion Festival crowds. It's also handy for the Philosopher's Path, and the lovely Zen temple at Nanzenji. There's and English menu, and disposable paper bibs in case you are worried about getting curry splashes on your Gion Festival kimono. Be warmed that the restaurant gets busy during peak tourist seasons, and the Gion Festival period is certainly no exception. The secret is to get there early, or during the mid-afternoon once the crowds have thinned.
While You're Here
One of the nicest things to do on even the briefest of visits to Kyoto is to take a leisurely morning stroll around Nanzenji Temple and the lovely pond garden of nearby Eikando.
Having fortified yourself with Hinode's finest, you can then walk up the Philosophers' path to Ginkakuji, 'The Silver Pavilion'. If you're still hungry, stay tuned to this feature where we will introduce another wonderful eatery, near to Ginkakuji, the incomparable Daigin Shokudo.