Kanga An

  • Vegan Vegan
    ( 6 reviews )

278 Karasuma dori, Kita-ku, Kuramaguchi, Kyoto, Japan, 603-8146

Temple setting, Shojin Ryori style food, but a special style which is Fucha Ryori. Two days advance booking for party of 2 minimum is required. Address in Japanese: 〒603-8146 京都府京都市北区鞍馬口町寺町西入新御霊口278. Note: kitchen may stop serving 30-60 minutes prior to closing, check ahead. Open Mon-Sun 12:00pm-3:00pm, 5:00pm-9:00pm.

Categories: Vegan, Japanese, Shojinryori

6 Reviews

First Review by slo0go

Probably the best meal I have ever had - Edit

I didn’t know what to expect... So perfect, dining in a temple, in a private room, with exquisite food. Mind blown.

Pros: The food is incredible , Outstanding setting , service is impeccable

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Beyoncé has left the building.... - Edit

This place was just.... yeah. Shell it out and don’t look back.

Pros: Magical experience

Cons: The ephemeral nature of reality

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Perhaps the best meal I've had ever - Edit

I didn't know what to expect, it was hard to make the reservation because the website is only in Japanese, so we had to ask someone to RSVP for us. They welcomed us by my name as soon as we arrived and showed us to our private room with big, comfy office chairs. After that, the staff proceeded to quietly bring in dish after dish until we ate 12 course of beautiful food that was a party in your mouth. I had no idea how time passes so fast, but all of a sudden it had already been two hours of feasting.

Go if you are in Kyoto. If you can only choose one last meal, choose this one

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must experience royalty once - Edit

I concur with the previous reviews. This is an experience and not simply a meal. From the time you are ushered into your private dining room you feel special.

We had 13 courses over 2.5hrs and it felt like only an hour had passed. Our waiter, who we later discovered was one of the temple monks, spoke good English and explained each dish as he brought it out. Each dish so different from the last. Presentation was excellent. So much detail and artistry. There was not one dish we disliked. The flavours were subtle and not overbearing. The perfect blend of ginger and spices.

How much are you willing to pay for the greatest meal of your life. Our Y38,000 was worth every Yen.

Pros: atmosphere

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Possibly the best in Kyoto - Edit

Eating at Kanga An costs an arm and a leg but we can't keep ourselves from going back again and again anyway. Easily the most extravagant of the shojin ryori options in Kyoto it's also open at night, which is unusual for temple food which tends to be a lunch affair.

The gardens are stunning and utterly unique, with lavish rock garden formations that are dramatically lit up at night: a brilliant view to accompany a magnificent meal.

The decor is a little Chinese in feel - very over the top compared to traditional Japanese tastes. Our room was punctuated by an over-sized Western style black chandelier and the colour scheme features a lot of strong colours: red, black and gold. It's luxury meets stoicism - like a runaway rogue monk - and provides for an unexpected and yet entertaining cultural blend. The hybrid theme is continued by the inclusion of a Western style bar on the premises - far from the usual temple setup but if you'd like to cap your night off with a whiskey, you've come to the right place.

The food is as indulgent as temple food never gets. No austerity here, this is a feast and no less. The flavours are robust, presentation is ornate. Admittedly it feels a bit altered to suit modern sensibilities but when it looks and tastes like this, it's hard to really care. The previous reviewer mentions it's not too tasty - unless she's in the habit of eating Big Macs every day this puzzles me to no end, but each to their own I guess!?

Book in advance (we always order the most expensive one - if you're going to do it, do it in style, right!?), take your credit card and try not to look too hard at the bill. You won't forget your meal at Kanga An in a hurry so if you think of it that way, it's worth every yen.

Pros: stunning setting, open at night, a fulfilling, amazing meal

Cons: it comes at a price, a bar in a temple - not sure about this, menu doesn't change much seasonally

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Extravagant! - Edit

When you get out of the train station (Exit 6, I think?) turn right. When you reach a street where there is a photo shop and a barber shop on either corner, turn right onto the street and walk down a few hundred meters. You will see Kanga An.

This restaurant is where I've had the most expensive vegan meal ever. I wouldn't say it was the tastiest meal I've ever had, but it was definitely an experience well worth the money. This restaurant serves shojin cuisine. If you've ever been to Kajitsu in New York City, this is the restaurant Kajitsu is trying to emulate, I think.

We had the eleven course meal (there are three choices: 9, 11, and 15 courses, I think). NOTE: when making your reservation at least two days in advance, you have to choose which course you want, without know what will be prepared. Each course looked small, but after eleven courses, you can believe we were very full. Each dish was beautifully and elegantly prepared (see the pictures!). There was a tempura assortment that included hibiscus, lotus root, and a basket made of seaweed. There were also gold flakes and beautifully cut vegetables abound. The meal cost 23,100 yen, or about $282.00 USD for eleven courses for two people.

I don't know if it's true, but the materials placed next to the place mats claim that Kanga An was previously a temple frequented by the Imperial Family, back in the day. It is in Kyoto, the Imperial Family's former stomping grounds, so it could be true. In any event, the building and grounds are absolutely beautiful. We went in November, and the foliage was amazing. P.S. when you dine here, you sit in your own private dining room.

There is also a bar at the restaurant, which overlooks a beautiful garden. All the drinks there are 1000 yen. They serve wine, beer, and sake. I think the best thing about the bar is the view.

I don't know if I would go back, but I definitely would recommend going at least once. Be sure to call at least two days in advance to make a reservation. They take credit cards!

Pros: Beautiful food, Beautiful place, What an experience!

Cons: Expensive!!!

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