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Elegant teatime in Isetan Kyoto's "Saryo Tsujiri" in Kyoto Station

Kyoka
Updated Jun 14, 2017

Kyoto station usually marks the start of the trip. It also can be the end of the trip with buying gifts, eating the last Kyoto meal, or just resting before heading home. This time we introduce one popular café which is directly connected to the station. Here you can have the full tea menu offered at the long established “Gion Tsujiri’s” Kyoto Isetan department store’s “Saryo Tsujiri”

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Loving the old style entrance's atmosphere

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“Saryo Tsujiri” opened to teach the younger generations the practice of drinking and making tea the traditional way, within “Gion Tsujiri” well known for its Uji tea, and opened its doors in 1860. The concept being a “tea dojo”, the name derives from taking the “都” (read Tsu meaning city) from Kyoto, the “絽” (read Ji meaning road) from “Shijooji” and the “里” (read Ri meaning birthplace or homeland) from “Cha no Sato” (points to Uji the birthplace of Japanese green tea). Opened in 1978, they offer many items on the menu using Uji tea in a very Kyoto soft environment.

“Tsujiri” in Isetan Kyoto is directly connected to the JR Kyoto Isetan and on the 6th, floor and is a welcome stop for travelers with luggage because of its vicinity to the station. Some may worry that because it’s in a department store that it would be hectic inside but the comfortable décor and ample space will blow those worries away.

We recommend stopping here to have a last taste of Tokyo and all the tea infused items they provide.

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A menu that tea lovers will go nuts for

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While having many items on both the drink and food menus, you can also add things to the set menus. In the image above is the “Matcha Milk” 630 JPY with the “Dango to Warabimochi” 401 JPY (dango is a rice cake and Warabimochi is a jelly-like confection made from bracken starch and covered or dipped in kinako) (these two aren’t sold separately here) combined it can be had for 1031 JPY. The Isetan shop also has a special menu so keep an eye out for those items too.

It goes without saying but all the items keep a very firm tea flavor! For tea fanatics, the menu begs you to come back to taste everything they offer.

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Do try the parfait

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The “Tsujiri Parfait” pictured above contains 9 different ingredients and is only 1050 JPY. With the “Tokusen Tsujiri Parfait” (Choice Tsujiri Parfait) you get 11 ingredients such as Matcha Castella for only 1231 JPY. With so many different types of parfait to choose from including seasonal and special limited types you might have a hard time choosing.

What is the appeal of a parfait that makes us think “should I get a parfait?” when glancing at the menu? Could it be the anticipation of what ingredients are used, or the satisfaction of a getting your money’s worth because of that, or just simply how beautifully complete one is?

Seems as though there are many men who enjoy parfaits as well, but they may feel shy ordering one themselves so make your family or boyfriend happy by ordering it for them.

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Buying gifts before heading home

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At the check out counter of “Saryo Tsujiri” there is a gift corner where you can buy all manner of items that “Gion Tsujiri” makes.

The picture above shows 2 “Uji Hojicha” teabags packaged in aluminum and comes in a cute little box shown in the background for only 189 JPY. “Tsujiri no Sato” which are rolled rice crackers with Matcha cream filling, come in a pack of 8 for 368 JPY. So you see there are many gifts that are affordable as well. For you or friends who frequently use a travel mug at school or work, a great buy would be the instant green tea they sell.

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Even comforting space like this

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“Ahh Kyoto” the feeling you get when you look upon this tiny bit of this magnificent city. The tastiness of the tea or parfait doubles when you see this. It raises the image of the shop 5 fold as well. This is the kind of décor that sets it apart from other cafes.

Because it’s convenient local shoppers come here as well making this oasis a bit crowded around noon. We suggest you go in the morning or after 3pm.

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For those who want to do Kyoto one last time before they leave!

Yeah coffee and western teas are great too but green tea is a foundation of Japan, consumed for generations for its health properties it also relaxes the mind and body. When coming to the end of your trip we recommend coming here to buy gifts, drink tea and replay all the experiences you had in Kyoto in a classy environment.

This article was originally published on Sep 23, 2015

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