• Vegetarian Vegetarian
    ( 12 reviews )

18-3 Kitagata-cho, Kawanokami Tsukinuke, Nara, Japan, 630-8314

Indian and Asian food restaurant at 奈良市川之上突抜北方町18-3 with mostly Japanese-style seating (low tables and only a few chairs), plus one Western height table. The English menu has two sides: "with egg and milk" or "without egg and milk." Has curried rice. Open Mon-Tue 12:00pm-8:30pm, Fri-Sun 12:00pm-8:30pm.

Categories: Vegan-friendly, Lacto, Ovo, Indian, Japanese

12 Reviews

First Review by KatrienDreessen

Real food that taste good - Edit

Organic and vegetarian/vegan food at a reasonable price. From the temple area to the Nara station is just a bunch of minutes more than the fastest route. The two owner are gentle and discrete. Basically you’re at their home, it’s very cozy.

Pros: Organic veg food , Fast service, Tranquillity

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Terrific meal in a lovely setting - Edit

I ate the brown rice omelette with Samosas.

My host was extremely obliging and the food was terrific.

Keep in mind that they do not accept credit card

Pros: clear menu, friendly staff, traditional setting

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Welcome very nice - Edit

The owner are very welcoming, nice place. I will not return because of the food but recommend for a try.

Pros: Welcome

Cons: Expensive price

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fantastic - Edit

As I am vegan and gluten free was worried about finding somewhere in Nara. We arrived and the proprietor read my food card and was amazing. She explained what I could have and was really helpful about what the others could eat (2 more vegans and 2 omnivores). She even advised me about problems I might have and gave me a bit more writing to show at restaurants to avoid problems. The food was amazing.

Pros: fantastic food, authentic Japanese restaurant

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good vegan stuff! - Edit

they made sure to ask several times if we didn't eat egg and milk, plus the curry was tight.

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home cooked goodness - Edit

Literally like being invited round to someone's house for lunch but it was one of our loveliest experiences in Japan. The hosts are friendly and happy and the food delicious!

Pros: host, taste

Cons: not a formal restuarant

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Ashura - Edit

Dine in a Japanese style room with the traditional floor seating. You'll get a warm welcome from the hostess and she made us feel comfortable and cosy after walking from the fire festival on a cold night in March. The food was nice and hearty.
I do agree with what the others are saying though, some atmospheric music would have been nice, no biggie though since Japanese waiting staff don't tend to bother you while you're eating so you're probably not really overheard/listened to much.

Cons: Some music would be nice...

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Cold - Edit

The food is fine but the owner is not so warm to customers. There's not a single sound and it feels lonely and unwelcoming. I hope they add a good background music. But visually, the place looks nice (except that the tables are a bit too low). It's not much but they do have some options for no-onion type of vegetarians.
Updated from previous review on Thursday August 13, 2015

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Not great... - Edit

We read the mixed reviews about this place and decided to go there as there was no other choice - we had already been to another fantastic restaurant for lunch in Nara, however it was a Sunday and that restaurant was closed for dinner.

We didn't find it too hard to find down a bit of a backstreet, walked in and the first thing that hit me was that it was just as cold inside as it was outside! The lady inside welcomed us in and told us to choose a table - we had our pick as there was no one else in the restaurant. She did move the heater over so it was directed at our table, but it was still really cold.

Also the next thing that was terrible was the deathly silence.. no music or any backgound sounds other than the occasional kitchen prep sound when she was preparing our meals.

We were given a menu and I asked the lady what was vegan - she said the back of the menu was vegan - no dairy or eggs - and the front was vego. My boyfriend ordered off the front as he is not vegetarian and I ordered off the back which is vegan. We ordered samosa's, I had a curry with rice and he ordered a pasta dish. All meals were just okay. Not bad, not good.. and the somosas were okay but a little oily and definitely needed a dipping sauce.

The silence was probably the part that got to me the most and the ambience really put me off. I wanted to eat and get out of there pretty quickly!

The lady could speak a little English and brought a card out not make sure we didn't have any allergies.

Overall the meal was okay but I definitely wouldn't go back unless we had no choice.

Pros: Lady was friendly enough, Given a little present upon leaving

Cons: Really cold!!!, Ambience - dead silence!, Food not that tasty

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Don't believe the hype - Edit

After seeing the reviews here on HappyCow, we decided to try this place, and found it easy enough down an empty side street. The interior is lovely if you are into buddhist paraphernalia; with all the random junk thrown around it is as if you walked straight into the living room of the head priest of some obscure local sect. The staff ignored us until we sat down at the counter in front of them. Then they asked us about egg and dairy and showed us the vegan menu, which turned out to be a pathetic joke: both English and Japanese versions were literally photocopies of the lacto-ovo vegetarian menu, with the non-vegan parts taped over or simply crossed out with a marker. Despite making a huge fuss about their vegan options, nothing was apparently replaced or reconsidered for vegan customers. What do you get when you subtract egg from an omelet? Ketchup, apparently, which is what the owners of Ashura tried to sell us for the same price as their ovo-vegetarian omelet.
We settled for the curry, which was ok but nothing more, and neither spicy nor sweet. One of us made the mistake of paying extra for the fried gluten meat option, which turned out to be half a dozen cold chunks of non-seasoned gluten patty thrown on the plate, drenched in oil and hardly edible. Ordering the salad was our next mistake: it came more than twenty minutes after anything else we'd ordered, and looked like someone had just bought it in a convenience store and thrown away the free dressing. All we got was a salt shaker.
The samosa was an insult: a scrap of already-deep fried tofu stuffed with samosa dough, closed with a toothpick and badly fried again. Croquettes, served with plain soy sauce, were very bland but forgivable considering the rest of the menu.
Others may have had better experiences and perhaps we were just unlucky. But considering the hostility of the staff, their complete lack of cooking skills and the insulting vegan "menu", I hope that anyone in need of a vegan meal in Nara stays away from Ashura in favor of a better option.

Pros: Hippie interior

Cons: Awful food, Fake vegan options, Ignorant staff

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  Contributions +13

Great food - Edit

Great food. Worth the search to find it.

Pros: Small

Cons: No western seating

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Great food, fast and friendly service! - Edit

The have an english menu: one side for food without eggs, milk or yoghurt. The other one containing these ingredients. We had a vegetable curry with brown rice, tofu croquettes and samosa. We enjoyed every bite of it. The hosts were very friendly and checked regularly if we could eat certain ingredients (eg seaweed)

Pros: fast, friendly, tasty

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