Kansai's Hidden Treasures: Kyoto's Nishiki Market


Stomach rumbling? Looking to sample a variety of Japanese cuisines? Look no further than Nishiki Market, located in the heart of Kyoto. 
 
As Kyoto’s premier food market, Nishiki Market contains a myriad of food stalls, as well as a few supermarkets. Typical offerings include skewered meat and fish, some even packaged to bring home with you.
Skewered snacks at Nishiki Market

A typical food found at Nishiki Market is tako tamago. Tako tamago consists of a quail egg inserted into the head of a small octopus, and is sold in several sizes. 
If you are craving oden (a Japanese stew that typically includes daikon [radish], kognac, fishcakes, and eggs), or a variety of fish/shrimp/cuttlefish cakes, there are several booths that can sate that desire.
Fish/shrimp/cuttlefish cakes galore

For those who are lactose intolerant, there is a store mid-way down Nishiki Market that sells soybean-based foods. Kyotofu’s soymilk doughnuts are constantly made in small batches, and when toasty warm, taste wonderful. They also offer soymilk based ice cream—the matcha-flavored one is particularly tasty.   
Kyotofu Doughnuts
If you’re still looking for something on the sweeter side, there’s also several stores selling traditional Japanese desserts. 
By the end of your time at Nishiki Market, your stomach’s desires will be much more than just satiated. 
 
Tips: 
-       Eat any food close to the booth it was bought at to avoid being rude to other storekeepers and visitors. 
 
Tips to Save Money:
-       Stay on the lookout for a takoyaki stand that sells their octopus balls on the cheap—for ¥200 you can get six of them. It is a popular hangout spot for local middle school/high school students, so perhaps you will find a friend among them to chat with while devouring the takoyaki!
-       Take advantage of the supermarkets scattered throughout Nishiki Market to refuel on necessities and drinks; their prices are much lower than convenience stores. 
 
Enjoy!

Eri Lin