Whenever people hear Arashiyama, they instantly think of the labyrinth that is The Bamboo Grove. The towering green bamboos serve as a perfect background for travel photos. No wonder tourists swarm toward this scenic spot. What people don’t know is that Arashiyama is one of the best places to experience traditional Kyoto food and Japanese street food.
Having visited Arashiyama last week, I was surprised to see a food oasis in this town west of Kyoto. In fact, there were several food stalls along the streets leading up to The Bamboo Grove. Before heading into the maze, my family and I grabbed some cold treats. I got a Purple Sweet Potato gelato topped with Silky Tofu soft serve which was definitely one of the best ice cream/gelato I’ve ever had! The flavors were different and interesting. I did not expect to like the soft serve because I am not a fan of tofu; though, to my amazement, I loved it! It complemented the sweetness and consistency of the gelato.
After conquering the crowd of tourists, we decided to try the fresh mochi (Japanese rice cake) on a stick. Nearly everyone was lining up for this so we thought it was definitely something we can’t pass up. It was so simple yet satisfyingly good: a little sweet and stretchy. The mochi was topped with red bean paste, whipped cream, and fresh fruits. Since it’s strawberry season, the vendor made some sticks particularly topped with strawberries instead of mixed fruits. I don’t think I’ll ever want to consume packaged mochi again.
We were only there for half a day but if I ever get a chance to visit again someday, I will definitely have to try the food we missed!
May 1, 2019
I am an NYC based content creator, filmmaker, gluten-free foodie, and mental health advocate.