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Biotei

  • Veg-friendly Veg-friendly
    ( 14 reviews )
Contact 075-2550086
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Southwest corner of Sanjo-dori and Higashinotoin-dori, 2nd floor (at Karasuma-dori Main St, opposite post office), Kyoto, Japan,

Serves meat, vegan options available. Small cozy modern cafe style. Serves fresh vegetable-based food. Some English is spoken, but bring a language dictionary if you don't speak any Japanese. Address in Japanese: 京都府京都市中京区三条通東洞院西入梅忠町28, M&Iビル2F. Name in Japanese: 自然派レストラン びお亭. Tue-Fri 11:30am-2:00pm, Tue-Wed 5:00pm-8:30pm, Fri-Sat 5:00pm-8:30pm

Category: Vegan-friendly, International, Japanese, Organic, Non-veg

Reviews (14)

First Review by Veganfriend

Nice food - service slow - Edit

Accommodating for vegans, they kept on checking with me if ingredients were okay or not! The food was very enjoyable, however it was busy and I found it difficult to get my leg under the table with the seat so I was a little uncomfortable.

Pros: Accommodating

Cons: Busy, Slow service


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Fairly nice, but don't go if you're in a hurry - Edit

I've been to this place three or four times now, and the food has been delightful every time. While there are some non-vegetarian options on the menu, these are marked, so that it's easy to navigate around them. The owners do not speak too much English, which is not a problem for me, but as someone else already advised it might be wise to bring a dictionary or phrase book. They do have an English menu available, so pointing might also work out.

What is less that great is the speed of being served. The place is very tiny, but even so the usual waitress is not very fast. Once I ordered something to go and had to wait over an hour for it to be ready, even though people who came in after me had their food quicker. If you're not in a hurry though, I would certainly recommend this place. The food is good and not very expensive. I'd especially recommend trying the vegetarian miso soup and the spring rolls.

Also a note: my Buddhist vegetarian friend, who can't eat onions, leek, garlic and several other herbs as well as not eating meat, fish or gelatin, was helped very well when she asked, and could eat several items from this menu. Not sure if there are many strict Buddhists on this website, but I thought it was worth mentioning.

Pros: Good food

Cons: Service is a bit slow


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English menu, reasonably priced lunch sets - Edit

After failing to find any vegan restaurants that were open today (Thursday) for lunch, we found Biotei through Happycow. The place is on the second floor, small and quaint. The server was a very nice and friendly lady. She offered us an English menu and did her best to explain the choices to us. Vegan options are clearly labeled. They have a vegan-version of the lunch special, which costs 200 Yen more (like the other reviewer mentioned), but it's worth it, since you get a vegan-friendly miso soup too. The lunch set comes with a soup, hot tea, a bowl of rice, a salad-type dish (mine came with tofu at the bottom), and another dish (mine was a curry mashed potato). Everything was delicious! My husband ordered the curry spring rolls (which is also vegan). He said it was very tasty. Highly recommend this place!


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Nice place - Edit

Went to this restaurant for dinner. They had an english menu and was staff was friendly. Delicious food. Had meat options also. Vegan option was 200 JPY costlier but still the price is comparable to what you pay at other restaurants for dinner. Food portions were sufficient and also delicious.
Chose Japanese dinner set. It was a bit different here that they gave dishes one by one instead of everything in 1 go. But then, I could drink the hot miso soup at the end!

The restaurant is very small and hence, the first time I went, they said not enough place as it can seat around 12 people I think and I had to find another restaurant. But the next day,there was place. Would again visit if in that area.! Seating, i.e., tables were a bit low for my comfort but then, hey, it is Japan and I have to adjust for my height!
-1 for seating and space.

Pros: Location and staff, Food delicious, Moderate prices

Cons: Space cramped, If full, you may have to go elsewhere


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Wonderful food and staff! - Edit

We really liked the atmosphere here, the vegan option was traditional Japanese style and the staff had no problem understanding what we wanted. It was nice to see plenty of locals enjoying the food. The climb up the narrow staircase was fun and the vegan Florentines they were selling at the time yummy. Wish we were returning to Kyoto this trip so we could eat again!


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Macrobiotic place in Kyoto - Edit

Biotei serves macrobiotic food, which is essentially just vegan + fish. Almost everything on the menu can be made vegan and they have an English menu. The staff spoke English just enough to communicate.

The inside has a small town cafe feel and there were very friendly locals hanging out.

The food was Japanese and fresh, we liked everything we got. I especially loved my homemade ginger ale with fresh ginger! They even had vegan cookies for dessert!

Pros: Mostly vegan, Great atmosphere, Vegan dessert

Cons: Small (not a lot of seats), Slow service


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Inexpensive, good vegetarian food. - Edit

Biotei was my favorite inexpensive vegetarian restaurant in Kyoto. The food was good, with a range of vegan options. By Japanese standards, the servings were ample. The set meals came with a variety of tasty small plates and a main course. As one might expect for Kyoto, there were always interesting tofu options. The miso soup was wonderful, as were the pickled vegetables. I had several great salads there and a memorable soy based vegetable soup. As for price, my wife and I ate there, with drinks, for less than we would pay in a comparable restaurant in New York City! In fact, I wish this restaurant were in New York. It would be up on my list of favorites. The staff was always friendly, and despite my limited Japanese, I had no problem communicating. The place is easy to find if you know where Sanjo-dori and Higashinotoin intersect. Check your map before your visit. It's up a flight of stairs, over a clothing boutique.

Pros: Good Japanese vegetarian food., Friendly staff., Relaxed atmosphere.

Cons: None in my experience


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Upstairs-worth the trip - Edit

Biotei has a varied menu with vegetarian set meals and options, and an English language menu. The servings were generous, the waitstaff friendly and the price (for Kyoto ) reasonable. We had dinner there and plan to go back for more.

It's located at the intersection of Sanjo & Higashitoin- dori, on the 2nd floor. There's an imposing brick Post office across the street.

Higashitoin is an interesting street to walk along, with many shops, patisseries, artisans, etc.

Pros: Vegan options, Quick and friendly service , Reasonable prices

Cons: Hard to find without clear directions


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Fresh and tasty food - Edit

such fresh and tasty food. very busy and crowded with an informal feel - mostly frequented by locals. great value for money and well worth a visit but was just too hot, steamy and overcrowded - so busy they forgot one part of our order but we enjoyed the food very much and are glad we went!

Pros: fresh tasty food, very good value, great atmosphere

Cons: too hot & busy


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Friendly fast service and a favourite for locals - Edit

Plenty of food available for the hungry vegan. With a few locals dining there I was happy enough. I recommend the spring rolls. Very nice. Pretty easy to find as well which is a plus.


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I love this place - Edit

I visit this place every time I'm in Kyoto. It's a simple, cramped little restaurant at the top of a winding metallic staircase and not terribly easy to find, though if you have a map of the area, you should be able to find it OK - Lonely Planet's Japan/Kyoto guides list this restaurant and it is on one of their Kyoto maps.

The food is really good value - you can get a main for 700-800 yen, though if you want to try a couple of things, you are looking at more like 1500-2000yen.

The fried gluten is scrumtious, as is their tofu steak. Their salads are tasty and the fruit is super fresh.

As another reviewer mentioned, the restaurant isn't 100% vegan/vegetarian. Last time I was there, a lady next to me was eating fish. But it is mostly vegetarian food and the staff have a pretty good understanding of vegetarianism/veganism - which is pretty amazing for Japan!

The ladies who run the place are very warm and welcoming.

There is an organic food shop underneath this restaurant that is worth checking out too.


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The most pleasant dining experience in Japan - Edit

Fantastic food - tasty, filling and nutritious. Great variety - lovely set menu. Pleasant service - amended the set menu to ensure I got a dish that didn't have fish in it. Small and cosy so great atmosphere

Pros: So so tasty, Good variety, Pleasant service


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Great food! - Edit

I'm not vegetarian but I went here with another non-vegetarian and a vegan and we all loved the food. It's right across from the post office on the second floor and easy to walk to from the subway station. The food was great, the service was good, the prices were good too and the menus were in English.

Pros: Friendy staff, great food, lots of options

Cons: Small room, but not bad


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