Food · gyoza · Japan · Kyoto · Travel

Japan Day 9: Kyoto (Nishiki Market, Kyoto manga museum, Gyoza)

Breakfast for today!Came across this interesting bengal cat cafe and owl cafe, but we didn’t enter.We headed to the Nishiki market (which is also known as Nishiki shopping district), which is one stretch of street with shops selling candy, fried snacks, raw fish and seafood, nuts and other snacks, and lots of pickled vegetables. 

It’s interesting to just walk down the whole street and sample crackers and stuff (only a few shops offer samples though).Kyoto candies are known for being pretty! Well, Japanese candies and wrapping itself are usually quite cute.A shop selling fried stuff.We bought fried onion+potato+curry. It was good, but I thought it was a croquette when it was more of a fish cake.You could try some popular Japanese desserts at this shop!I got the kinako (roasted soybean flour) dango, which tasted like….moist rice flour with roasted soybean lol. It was so-so for me, I much prefer Singapore’s sweet, nutty and chewier muah chee! Look at the bottom right drink. Enzyme green soup drink lol. It looks interesting though?? We had the yuzu (Japanese lemon) + honey drink! It was refreshing after all the crackers and fried stuff.I saw an electronic omikuji at a shrine nearby the nishiki market!! There’s a creepy looking puppet inside which moves (and will probably act out your fortune).Had katsudon (pork cutlet rice bowl) at a nearby restaurant. It tasted alright, and I couldn’t finish my rice. I think they gave me like two bowls worth of rice!This was an impromptu decision, but we decided to go to the manga museum! It costs 800yen per person and is held at an old elementary school!You can see locals sitting on the lawn, reading the museum’s manga. They had a program to help you create your own manga! You could move the characters to different backgrounds and add words and speech bubbles.They categorized the manga by year and stopped at 2001 I think. I found the inuyasha manga books and ended up reading the entire first book in Japanese lol. Surprised I could understand most of it!! I think reading books in Japanese would greatly improve my Japanese!There was a table with lots of nice markers/pens and paper for us to (attempt to) draw our own manga. 

Below is what I drew! (Read from right to left). You might need to zoom in. And yes, it’s really random lol.Mitch drew a strange and cute box cat and some other box animals!After the manga museum closed at 6pm, we spontaneously decided to check out the premises of Kyoto national garden (where the Kyoto imperial palace is located).Can you spot the cats? They were really shy and we couldn’t get to pat them at all ๐Ÿ˜ฆThere was a nice pond at the edge of the garden.The whole area was soooo wide! I can’t imagine how much walking commoners and servants had to do within the garden and palace in the past lol.For dinner, we ate at this place called Gyoza Sugemasa! It’s recommended to search for the address from their official website as we followed one of the addresses on google maps and got to the wrong place ๐Ÿ˜ฆ they have a branch near gion and another branch at Kyoto tower (near Kyoto station).We had the gyoza set (780 yen) which was really worth it as it came with 12 pieces of crispy gyoza, chewy fragrant Japanese rice, miso soup with bits of chopped cabbage and pork, and crunchy pickles. My favorite thing about the meal though, was their house-made chilli oil, which had an addicting nutty flavor. I’m pretty sure they used sesame oil, but there’s more to it which I can’t figure out. I’m gonna miss this chili oil so much!!

The gyoza tasted like that of Osaka ohsho (a popular gyoza chain which can be found in Osaka dotonburi and Singapore), which was quite delicious!

Today’s our last day in Kyoto. I’m gonna miss the traditionalness and peacefulness of being surrounded by mountains, temples and shrines. Staying so near a mountain is inconvenient but I love the peace and localness it affords. Goodbye Kyoto! Till next time. Onward to Tokyo!

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