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“Great tempura and awesome service”

Tenichi Kyoto Isetan
Ranked #321 of 12,280 Restaurants in Kyoto
Cuisines: Japanese
Neighborhood: Shimogyo-ku
Restaurant details
Neighborhood: Shimogyo-ku
Albany, New York
Level 5 Contributor
62 reviews
47 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
“Great tempura and awesome service”
Reviewed August 24, 2014

After a full day of sightseeing in Kyoto I had some time before my shinkansen back to Tokyo. The guidebook I was following (Lonely Planet Kyoto) recommended a few places right in the station building, in the "Eat Paradise" group of stores and restaurants on the 11th floor. One of them was Tenichi; "sublime tempura", the author promised. I was certainly up for that!

The first thing that impressed me was the service. Both the hostess and the chef (I was seated at a tempura bar, with the food being prepared right in front of me) spoke English, and were most gracious. While I love Japanese food, and really enjoy visiting the country, I am still pretty ignorant of the finer points of Japanese dining (and to be honest, many basic points as well!). No fear - at Tenichi, both the chef and the waitress not only answered all my questions, but actually volunteered some advice when they saw my consternation at unfamiliar dishes and implements.

I ordered the basic meal, with shrimp and vegetable tempura, and of course rice, soup and a few pickled vegetables. The tempura is made right in front of you, one piece at a time, so it is as hot and fresh as can be. And the guidebook was right - it was indeed sublime! The chef advised me which pieces should be dipped in the delicious sauce, and which should be salted (there was a separate salt basin on my tray for that purpose). The waitress politely pointed out an empty container for shrimp tails.

And that to me was the highlight of the meal. The food was great, but the service was truly awesome, putting me totally at ease. A meal in an unfamiliar place can be very intimidating; the folks at Tenichi made it a totally comfortable, pleasant experience.
I highly recommend it.

  • Visited August 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1 Thank Numinescent
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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45 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Indonesian first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Level 5 Contributor
57 reviews
28 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
“excellent original Tempura”
Reviewed August 20, 2014

I found this place through advice from the hotel must say I was a bit suspicious at first, no signs in English menu only in Japanese but then the waitress and the chefs - although with very little knowledge of English - helped us understand what was available and guided us. The experience was very enjoyable watching the chefs prepare tempura right in front of you at the counter, excellent quality, very tasty even our 6 year old enjoyed. Not cheap by western standards but moderate by local standards. Great place would definitely return, one of the places I have enjoyed most in Japan.

  • Visited August 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Dario S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 6 Contributor
205 reviews
136 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 155 helpful votes
“Excellent tempura in an unexpected location”
Reviewed May 23, 2014 via mobile

If you, like me, are the type that never would consider a meal in a food court called Eat Paradise in a major train station, think again. Tenichi offers terrific tempura at a not too unreasonable price. It's located on the 11th floor of Kyoto central train station. (Take the in themselves spectacular east escalators in the main hall to the 11th floor, walk through the glass doors on your right, turn left and walk more or less straight until, on your left side, you see the only restaurant that shows ONLY images of tempura. I had the cheapest set menu, 3 servings of altogether 11 pieces growing in sophistication, served with the usual side dishes among which an excellent clam soup. All for 30 euros.
You don't come here for the scenery, but the food is great.

1 Thank ClemRobyns
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hong Kong, China
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
“Best tempura in a long time”
Reviewed March 12, 2014 via mobile

We stopped in here fresh off the train from Kansai. As we were hungry we were glad not to have to go any further than the station. Once we located the restaurant, we took a seat at the bar from where we had front row seats watching our tempura being freshly cooked. The vegetables were delicious as was the seafood. The entire meal was served very quickly and over too soon. Would definitely go again for a tempura fix!

Visited March 2014
Thank Kathryn A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 6 Contributor
106 reviews
39 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
“Excellent tempura”
Reviewed February 7, 2014

We ate here in September and and had a great time.

We had the set menu and it was brilliant. Some of the best fish I have ever tasted - unfortunately the chef didn't know the name in English! My boyfriend ate a scallop declaring it delicious ( normally he won't touch them).

The staff (and indeed other diners) helped us with what to eat with what! Fantastic meal. Would not hesitate to return!

Visited September 2013
Thank Haeadie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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