You won’t have to make do with substandard steak if ever you’re in Kyoto, Japan, that’s for sure. After all, Kyoto is the cultural capital of the country, and they have terrific steak houses here. If you’re jonesing for a great steak here, then there are plenty of great options to visit.
Try the following Kyoto steakhouses to start with:
Premium Wagyu Steak Hanasato
If you’re near the Gion district, then you can find this teppanyaki restaurant inside a traditional Japanese townhouse known as a machiya. Sit at the counter, and you’ll be able to watch them grill your steak perfectly right in front of you.
For your first visit, try the Premium Yonezawa Beef Sirloin Steak. It comes from Yonezawa in Yamagata Prefecture and it’s always served rare, so don’t even think about insisting on having it well done. Try this steak with some uncommon Domaine wine, and you’re good to go.
Kyoto Steak Wagyu – Gottie’s BEEF
This place is only a 2-minute walk from Kyoto Station, and you should find it easily enough. It’s popular among tourists looking for some Western-style steak after all the Japanese cuisine they’ve been enjoying. And it’s a great place if you’re a fan of aged beef.
You can start off with the popular 5-Kind Gottie’s Board, which offers 5 different beef cuts including sirloin and top sirloin butt so you can discover which cut appeals to you. Or you can just go ahead with the Wagyu Sirloin, which is simply fantastic. It’s been aged for 40 days and then simply seasoned with rock salt, and the pure taste is just divine.
Sumibi Steak Sakai Kyoto Sanjo
Unlike other places with rather old ambiences, this place rocks a modern vibe that should get you right back to the 21st century. The counter seats are comfy, but do try the terrace seats if you can so you can just relax in the elegant garden.
Start with the Sashimi-style Kuroge Wagyu, which they delicately cook at low heat for 2 hours just to get it right. Another great option is the Kuroge Wagyu Beef Sirloin, which they grill with their special Hinata Binchotan charcoal. Whichever option you go with, they have the perfect wine to go with your steak.
This is a bistro that isn’t hard to find, and it seems like people want to keep it a secret. But it’s no secret that even the top chefs in the city like to visit this place for the food. It’s that good.
For the steak fans, one top choice is the Kyoto A5 Rank Sirloin Steak. You just can’t go wrong with their local beef.
Benjamin Steak House
Yes, there’s a Benjamin Steak House in Kyoto. If you’re a fan of the Benjamin in Manhattan and you’re now in Kyoto missing American classics, then give this steak house a visit.
The place is famous for only using beef that they’ve dry-aged for at least 28 days. Their dry-aging method is a secret, but it’s no secret that the steaks here are fantastic. What’s more, you have at least 400 kinds of wine to pair with that steak, so there’s something here that will match your wine preferences.
Add the warm service, and Benjamin Steak House is a winner.