One autumn weekend, after work, I felt like having yakiniku (BBQ) by myself for the first time in a while… so I went to “Kyo no Yakinikudokoro Hiro Senbon Sanjo Honten,” a restaurant so famous that no one in Kyoto City knows about it. I had not made a reservation in advance, but according to the official information, the restaurant has 98 seats, so I figured there would be plenty of room…. However, when I went there around 6:30 in the evening, I found that there was no room at all, and the waiter told me, “We can take reservations after 9 p.m., but…”. I was told by the clerk, “We can make an appointment after 9:00 p.m.” As expected, the two-and-a-half hour wait time was hard to bear…
Then it occurred to me that the restaurant I am going to introduce here is called “Daisho-en Yakiniku Restaurant. It seems to be under the direct management of “Niku no Daisho,” a butcher store in Nagaokakyo City, and although it is still a new store, established in July 2019, it is a popular restaurant in Kyoto with a growing reputation as a “yakiniku specialty restaurant where real meat lovers gather”. I called the restaurant immediately and was told that the counter seats were a bit cramped, but I was lucky enough to get a reservation, so I immediately left the Kyoto Sanjo-kai Shopping Arcade and headed for Hanazono Station, two stops away from JR Nijo Station….
A casual atmosphere with mainly young waitstaff… this is what Yakiniku Restaurant Daisho-en is like!
We entered Daisho-en Yakiniku Restaurant right on time for our reservation. The restaurant is cozy, with two tables for four on the left after passing through the entrance, three kotatsu-style tatami rooms on the right, and the kitchen and five counter seats in the back. The restaurant is still new, so there is none of the aged retro feel of the main Akayashiro restaurant. The atmosphere was similar to that of a popular izakaya.
The four waitstaff members who run the restaurant are young men and women. There was one young man who seemed to be very good at his job, and everything seemed to revolve around his call. It may have been just a coincidence that day, but I felt that he was doing the work himself. Perhaps it was just a coincidence, but the owner, who calls himself “Nukin-chu” (meat man), was absent that day.
This is the kind of restaurant you would expect to find here, so there is nothing stuffy about it at all. It has a casual atmosphere with mainly young waitstaff, and can be easily used for all kinds of purposes, from solo yakiniku to family use. In fact, there were family customers enjoying yakiniku with their small children…and if you gather a group of about 20 people, I think you can charter the restaurant and have a yakiniku party.
Let me introduce the five dishes I ordered at Daisho-en Yakiniku Restaurant… Is the restaurant’s reputation as a “place where real meat lovers gather” true? I verified it.
Now, before I introduce you to the various items of yakiniku I ordered at Yakiniku Daisho-en, let me first introduce you to the menu. Please take a look at the image below…
There are two menu lists for both food and drinks posted in the storefront. Looking at the menu, it seems that there are only hormone-based dishes and no red meat at all, right? But don’t worry. There is another menu inside the restaurant…
There was a menu written on a blackboard, and this blackboard menu consisted mainly of red meat. The prices are basically reasonable for the internal organs, while the red meat is priced one rank higher at over 1,000 yen across the board (note: prices include tax). The red meat items change daily depending on the availability, so there is no guarantee that the same meat will be available on a different day.
The first thing that caught my attention when I looked at the menu was today’s omakase-sumo, which is marked “market price. When I asked the waitress what it was, she told me that it was a plate of eight kinds of meat, including seven kinds of red meat and halami, which were written on the blackboard. A total of eight kinds of meat, including rare parts, one slice each…it sounds like the yakiniku lunch at Yakiniku Yazawa Kyoto. I dare not reveal the “market price” here, but I will leave that for you to enjoy when you pay your bill…
Let me introduce the highlight of the menu at Yakiniku Restaurant Daisho-en, the “omakase makase of the day”. At Yakiniku Daisho-en, you can choose between salt and sauce for all the yakiniku dishes, but I couldn’t make up my mind which one I wanted, so I decided to order both for one person at a time. I wonder what kind of face I will make as a result of this choice when I pay the bill. A face of joy? Or…
First, today’s omakase morsel, salt, was brought before us. Counterclockwise from the top right are: Extra-Top Loin, Misuji, Hiuchi, Kurimi, Marushin, Marukawa, Harami, Rump Thick, and last but not least…
Tongue with service!
The waitress said happily! I was actually thinking of adding the Extra Tongue (priced at 1980 yen including tax) and the Extra Harami (priced at 1880 yen including tax), but now I don’t have to add either of them.
I am glad that this omakase-mori offers a lot of rare parts, but for me, I found it “amazing” that they selected the assortment menu so that we can “compare the parts in close proximity…”. The meat of the chicken meat is in close proximity to each other, but the amount of sashi, the tenderness of the meat, and the rich flavor of the lean meat…when you actually compare them, you can see that the taste of the meat is different. They certainly taste different.
Well, maybe it was just a coincidence that the menu composition that day happened to be that way, but I felt that the selection, which was quite to the taste of the experts, was “as expected of a butcher store directly managed by a butcher store. This alone clearly shows that the word of mouth that “this is a place where real meat lovers gather” is true. I am not a yakiniku maniac, but as I was comparing the different meats on this platter, I felt somewhat pleased… I would not be surprised if some people turn into yakiniku maniacs as a result of eating this platter.
After finishing off the salt platter, now another round of tare (sauce)…what a luxurious evening! The dipping sauce is sweet and garlicky, and while it suppresses the clinginess of the fat, it also adds an irresistible magic to the meat that makes you want to shovel it down with rice on the side. It is up to you to choose whether you want to taste the flavor of the meat itself directly or consume it with white rice with gusto. As for me, I would recommend the salt version, which makes it easier to distinguish the different tastes of each part of the meat…
After finishing the red meat platter, I ordered two hormone dishes, hoso (small intestine) and akasen (fourth stomach) (both with sauce). The prices for the hoso and akasen are 580 yen and 680 yen, respectively, which are quite reasonable compared to the red meat items. In these days of continuous price hikes, it is a real pleasure to be able to eat at such reasonable prices. I am sure all beer-loving old men are thinking, “If only there was a place near my house where I could enjoy such reasonably priced yakiniku hormone…”.
The fatty and plump hoso and the thick and crispy akasen are placed together in the smokeless roaster…both are perfect accompaniments for beer, and one plate alone can easily fill three medium draft beer mugs. The akasen, in particular, is much thicker and chewier than the giaranegi at Yakiniku Ebata.
On the other hand, when you put the hoso in your mouth, the furious sweet juice created by the fusion of fat and sauce is released into your mouth with a bang, and the aroma of burnt fat wafts into your nose, stimulating your sense of taste and smell with a gusto. It is good as a snack with beer, but I think it is also irresistible to eat it with plenty of sauce on the rice.
I ordered the Harami Yukke (priced at 1,080 yen including tax), which had caught my eye from the moment I saw it on the menu here. I had yukke at Hormone Shimada in Gunma Prefecture a while ago, but the yukke at that time had a little heat added to the meat, so it didn’t really feel like raw meat. So it has been a really long time since I have had yukke with a raw meat feeling like sashimi. The number of restaurants that serve yukke has really decreased recently, and in that sense, I can understand why this restaurant is so valuable to meat lovers in Kyoto.
The dish is full of low-calorie and light harami. Stir this meat with egg yolk, green onion, and onion, and throw it into your mouth… After all, yukke is all about raw meat. The juices and texture of the meat are completely different from those of the meat that has been heated through. The sweet sauce and egg yolk add to the rich, sticky flavor, and the crunchiness of the green onions… well, you can imagine the rest. I wonder if the days when we can casually eat yukke like in the past will ever come back…until such a day comes, I hope that Yakiniku Restaurant Daisho-en will continue to do their best.
And to finish off the day, I ordered cold noodles (price 880 yen including tax). I had to resist the urge to add a bowl of white rice for this cold noodle dish. I sometimes have a craving for cold noodles. But then again, isn’t cold noodle soup at a barbecue restaurant just like dessert, a separate meal?
The noodles are very thin, but their firmness is so much stronger than ramen noodles that it makes you feel like you are eating cold noodles. The soup is cold and light, which also helps to wash away the fat from the yakiniku meat…Yes, it is a little hard to see in the picture above, but the cold noodles at Daisho-en Yakiniku Restaurant are topped with three pieces of beef tongue roast with a crispy texture. I thought it was a nice arrangement of toppings unique to such a yakiniku restaurant….
Like this, we finished off all five dishes, including the assortment. As one would expect from a butcher store, the quality of the beef was unquestionable, and I felt that it was “no wonder” that meat lovers in Kyoto gather at Yakiniku Restaurant Daisho-en. I would definitely recommend this restaurant to anyone who loves yakiniku…but what about the bill? Especially since we ordered two servings of omakase, which is a “market price” dish, it would not be surprising if the bill would be over 10,000 yen, or even as much as if we ordered omakase at a high-class sushi restaurant…
But you know, the price was also amazing. The price for the above five dishes and two cups of oolong tea (without appetizers) was surprisingly under 10,000 yen! Calculating backwards from each menu item, the omakase portion of the day was only 3,060 yen per person, even though it was full of rare parts of the meat! Isn’t that too much? I know that a simple comparison is not advisable, but from a financial point of view, this is less than half the price of a lunch course at Yakiniku Yazawa Kyoto… I was really surprised when I saw the bill. I was really surprised when I saw the bill… For this price, you can eat a lot of delicious meat and even eat yukke… I’m sure I’ll be back to this restaurant again and again.
Other menu items at Yakiniku Daisho-en (prices include tax)
- Medium rice (200 yen)
- Sanchu (dumplings) 300 yen
- Assorted kimchi 680 yen
- Bibimbap 680 yen
- Tail soup: 1,080 yen
Incidentally, Yakiniku Restaurant Daisho-en also has a good dessert menu…
Meat Daisho/Gion Daisho-en is also operating in Gion… Access to Yakiniku Restaurant Daisho-en is a 2-minute walk from the nearest station, Hanazono Station on the JR San-in Line.
Such Yakiniku Restaurant Daisho-en also operates a yakiniku specialty restaurant “Niku no Taisho/Gion Daisho-en” in Gion. According to the Tabelog, the Gion restaurant offers private rooms and a course named “Nikun-chu Course” that can be ordered with a reservation up to one day in advance…it seems to be a restaurant where you can enjoy yakiniku for different purposes than the Hanazono restaurant.
Isn’t it too much to eat a lot of delicious meat in Gion and get your change back for 10,000 yen per person? If you take your friends or acquaintances who love yakiniku, I am sure they will be delighted. If you are a yakiniku lover in Kyoto, it would not hurt to remember the existence of the Gion branch as well as the Hanazono restaurant.
Here are the details of the restaurant. Restaurant data is here…
Yakiniku Restaurant Daisho-en Out of 5.
Address: Hanazono Building, 44-10 Hanazono-Imachi, Ukyo-ku, Kyoto, 616-8042, Japan
Phone number: 090-1969-4129
Business hours: 17:30-22:00
Closed: Tuesdays and Wednesdays (other occasional holidays apply)
Parking: No parking lot
Credit card payment: Accepted
P.S. If you are looking for delicious yakiniku in Kyoto, please stop by this article…