BLOGKyoto travel tips2019.08.30

Enjoy the fascinating shaved ice in spring, summer, fall and winter!

ByAika Nishigaki

Ice cream, sherbet, and shaved ice are the classic cold sweets for summer! In the past few years, the number of shops selling shaved ice in Kyoto has been increasing one after another, and people have been talking about the high level of ice you can enjoy. They come in a variety of styles, ranging from the traditional crispy and coarse texture to the trendy fluffy texture, simple to elaborate. In this travel book, you can see the charm of shaved ice.

To "Nijo Wakasaya Teramachi", a Japanese sweets shop established over 100 years ago.


"Even though it's shaved ice, is it a Japanese confectionery shop?" Many people may not come here at all, but in Kyoto, long-established tea shops, Japanese and Western confectionery shops and Japanese sweets shops serve shaved ice making the best use of each flavor. Nijo Wakasaya is one of them, and it was established as a Japanese sweets shop in 1917 (1917). This is a famous store that has been making beautiful and delicate Kyoto wagashi. 

Shaved ice made from the store manager's passion with ingredients


At Nijo Wakasaya Teramachi store, "Saiun" which is eaten with 5 colors of honey is very popular. "Since this shop has been making Japanese sweets for more than 100 years, there was opposition from the company to offer shaved ice first.". Mayumi Oishi, the manager of Nijo Wakasaya's Teramachi store, says so. He loved shaved ice since he was a child, and he always wanted to serve delicious shaved ice to customers someday.

"I think there is a strong tendency to avoid Japanese sweets these days. That's why I wanted to make a place where young people can touch Japanese sweets.". It is said that he wanted to offer Kakigori even after persuading people against it because of that. Oishi, who loves Japanese confectionery, came up with the idea of offering shaved ice, in which the technique of Japanese confectionery plays a vital role in controlling the amount of sugar and temperature, and to let people experience traditional techniques.

Show us how to make shaved ice! 


I visited a kitchen that I usually don't use, and I was able to see the process until the shaved ice was completed! First, set the big clear ice in the shaved ice machine. It is said that this ice, natural water that wells up in the underground water of Nijo Wakasaya, is slowly frozen over 5 days carefully so that air does not enter. "If you freeze it for a long time, it melts slowly and you can enjoy Kakigori time for a relatively long time." Oishi said. You will be captivated by the fluffy feeling that can be seen from the way it is shaved.

The ice and fruit layers...!


Inside the saiun are five layers: ice, fruit, ice, fruit, ice and so on. We use seasonal fruits from time to time, so the content changes from time to time, but we use kiwi, apple, orange peel, and homemade amanatsu jelly. There was a sweet smell of fruit in the factory.

Secret of honey.


Don't forget the 5 colors of honey that can be said to be the key of Saiun! It also depends on the fruits and ingredients in season, so I am glad that there is something to look forward to in every season I visit. It is said that it is often served with three kinds of fruits and two kinds of peculiar sugar such as bekko-ame and amazake. It was not too sweet and had a strong fruitiness that made use of the ingredients. When I poured the natsumikan mitsu on it, people would say, "Almost summer tangerines...". We order good ingredients from all over the country, and there are times when Ms. Oishi herself goes to the market to choose the ingredients!

Finally... I will have it.




Actually, I wanted to eat Saiun at Nijo Wakasaya this summer. Soft white ice with a spoon in it! First of all, if you eat it with only ice, you will be more surprised at the delicate way of melting on the tongue. The reason why I can't kick my head when I eat it quickly is because it freezes slowly.

You can customize it to MY ice with 5 kinds of honey.


You can enjoy peeking fruits and add 5 different sauces to customize it in your own way. When I visited, there were 5 kinds of honey such as lemon, plum, natsumikan (summer orange), yogurt and bekko-ame. Refreshing flavor of plum syrup is perfect for the coming season of lingering heat. I was a little surprised by the honey of Bekkoame. It's sweet and the candy itself!? It tastes like that, but it has a refreshing aftertaste. This Bekko-ame is the most popular honey, and it is said that most of the year there are 5 kinds of it.

After shaved ice, it is time for souvenirs.


The tea room where you can eat shaved ice is on the second floor. The first floor is a shopping space where you can buy a lot of Japanese sweets. Buy "Furosen", the signature product of Nijo Wakasaya, as a souvenir. In a small retro box that fits in the palm of your hand, you can find the source of the hot water. There are three flavors: plain, matcha and zenzai. When you pour hot water, plovers and polka dots made of arare float. The thick throat is perfect for relaxing time! There are many other wagashi, from standard to seasonal wagashi, which not only taste but also look beautiful, so please take your time to look around.


■ Nijo Wakasaya Teramachi

67 Enoki-cho, Nijo-sagaru, Teramachi-dori Street, Nakagyo Ward, Kyoto City
5 minute walk from Kyoto Shiyakusho-mae Subway Station
Sales are from 9: 00 to 18 o'clock, and tea houses are from 10: 00 to 17 o'clock.

There's more! This is a recommended shaved ice shop that you can eat anytime of the year.

I still want to eat shaved ice even after the hot season is over! For those who love shaved ice, here are three shops in Kyoto that you can recommend.

Engrossed in large ice cubes and antique bowls "Ocha to Sake Tasuki"


This is a redesigned townhouse that is around 120 years old and stands along the elegant Gion Shirakawa street that is typical of Kyoto. Located in the Kyoto Gion Store of Select Recycle Shop "Paszabatton", this unique cafe offers both cafe time and quick drinking.

If you get lost, I want you to eat this! "Roasted Green Tea Mitsu with Soybean Flour Condensed Milk"


The recommended menu item is the 1,188 yen Roasted Green Tea Mitsu with Kinako Condensed Milk. The honey made of roasted green tea roasted in the shop is fragrant and fragrant... This and the shaved ice of Matcha Mitsu are the standard. In addition, elaborate monthly shaved ice such as Namadaifuku and Apple-mango are served every month. It is in an antique container that is sold in the store and looks cute, and the size is also good for SNS.


■ Ocha to Sake Tasuki

Kyoto, Higashiyama-ku, Sueyoshi-machi 77 -6, Pasza Barton Kyoto Gion Store
About a 5-minute walk from Keihan Gion Shijo Station
From 11: 00 to 19 o'clock (last order), and from 18:30 to 11 o'clock (last order) for Sundays and national holidays

Pioneer of the Kyoto Espuma boom "Chashou Shimizu Ippoen Kyoto Main Store"


A cafe where you can enjoy sweets and food of tea that is close to Chishaku-in and 33 kendo. It is run by a tea wholesaler who is supported by famous ryotei restaurants, so the quality and taste of tea is guaranteed.

You should eat the signature dish "Uji Matcha Ice Espuma "Kame""!


Espuma means "bubble" in Spanish. The turtle-like visual has a great impact. The fluffy espuma that is made by blending 2 kinds of matcha and wasanbon sugar matches the delicate ice gently. The taste is rich, and the adzuki beans and shiratama are nice accents.


■ Chashou Shimizu Ippoen Kyoto Main Store

665 Hongawara-cho, Higashiyama-ku Ward, Kyoto City
3 minutes walk from Higashiyama Shichijo bus stop
11:00~16:00 LO

If you want to enjoy plenty of fruits luxuriously "Kanoko".


A shaved ice cafe in the Umekoji area that is popular for the new JR station. It is on the second floor of the building called Kyoka Kaikan which has nostalgic atmosphere. It is popular among young girls, couples and families because you can eat shaved ice with lots of fruits.

Enjoy seasonal fruit flavor!


You should definitely try the limited flavor that uses plenty of seasonal fruits. This syrup is made by mixing fruit and syrup in a blender for each order. That's why it has such a rich fruitiness as if eating the cold fruit itself! What I received was watermelon. I couldn't stop holding a spoon because it was fresh and juicy. 


■ Kanoko

211 Kyoka-kaikan, 1 -1 Suzume-shoe-cho, Shimogyo-ku, Kyoto
5 minute walk from JR Umekoji Kyoto-nishi Station
11:00~17:00 LO


I looked around a shop where I can enjoy shaved ice, which is cold and makes me feel refreshed, in spring, summer, autumn and winter. During this trip, I thought, "NO MATTER HOW MANY I EAT, I WON'T GET TIRED OF IT...!". There are various styles, and each restaurant has its own unique menu, so it's nice to say "1 day shaved ice trip"! Please find your favorite Kakigori shop. 

Aika Nishigaki

A writer belonging to Kyoto editorial production "edit plus". I look forward to taking a walk looking for something delicious on weekends. Recently, I am addicted to collecting goshuin, and I like the goshuin I received at Nashinoki-jinja Shrine.

Seiichi Suzuki

A gourmet photographer who was born and raised in Kyoto and lives in Kyoto. I'm good at taking pictures of food such as sweets and food. My hobbies are eating delicious food and taking pictures.