Hyotei is a traditional kaiseki restaurant located at the entrance of Nanzen-ji Temple in Kyoto. It also boasts 3 Michelin stars. Crossing the doorstep of Hyotei is like traveling back in time. The restaurant has been owned and operated by the same family for 450 years, with the current chef-owner, Yoshihiro Takahashi, being the 15th generation to continue the culinary tradition.
Hyotei specializes in serving traditional tea kaiseki cuisine, which is a multi-course meal originating from the tea ceremony. Originally a humble meal of just a bowl of miso soup and three side dishes, kaiseki has evolved over the years into an elaborate celebration of flavours, colours, and textures that showcase the chef’s skills and the best of the season’s offerings.
A typical kaiseki meal usually consists of an appetizer, a seasonal dish called Hassun that reflects the current season, a sashimi dish, and a simmered and grilled dish, among others. Depending on the restaurant and the chef, there may be more than ten dishes in total.
One of the highlights and signature dishes at Hyotei is their soft-boiled egg, which is prepared using the same exact method that was used hundreds of years ago at the Hyotei tea house for hungry pilgrims on their way to Nanzen-ji temple. The egg is perfectly cooked to a soft-boiled consistency and tastes just as delicious as it looks!