Shimizu Ippoen (茶匠 清水一芳園) is a Kyoto based traditional teahouse, cafe and shop specialized in Japanese matcha desserts.
The infamous Japanese green tea matcha powder is nowadays considered a superfood and one of its features, among many, is its versatility. However, to find high quality matcha is not always easy. At Shimizu Ippoen you can rest assure you will get the best matcha since they only use the freshest matcha directly harvested and refined in Kyoto prefecture.
Shimizu Ippoen cafe has a black façade and looks like a traditional Kyoto house from outside:
Inside, expect a diaphanous space with comfortable seats and minimalist decoration typical from Kyoto.
What to eat at Kyoto Shimizu Ippoen Cafe
They elaborate different types of green tea powder matcha based desserts and sweets.
In the summer the matcha kakigori is really popular. Japanese summers can be extremely hot and humid, and this Japanese shaved ice dessert makes your body feel cool and refreshed. The matcha topping is unsweetened so you can feel the real strong Japanese matcha taste. It comes also with dango and sweet azuki beans, ingredients you can add on the dessert while you eat.
Then we have the matcha parfait which we found really innovative, with textures and ingredients not tried before.
First, we have the top of the parfait with Kyoto matcha soft ice cream, dango (the glutinous rice dumplings), green tea jelly, matcha cookie and a candied chestnut. The second layer is composed of rich matcha ice cream followed by crunchy pieces of puffed rice chocolate. Combination of green tea ice cream and chocolate is just amazing! Finally, we come to the bottom of the parfait with a layer of plain cream followed by Japanese mushrooms kinako cream and coffee jelly. Wait! Did you say mushrooms!? Yes... we were also surprised when we heart the word mushrooms in a dessert! But I have to admit it totally matched with the other ingredients and was really good.
Sometimes matcha parfaits are too homogenous and in the end you feel like you are eating too much of the same thing. This is not the case since different tastes and textures can be found in this parfait. The level of sweetness is also really low making your taste buds open to feel all the flavors incorporated in this extraordinary dessert.
Prices in line with other matcha cafes in Kyoto. At the time of writing this article, the matcha parfait is 1000 JPY (plus taxes) and the matcha kakigori 830 JPY (plus taxes).
We think is a fair price because of the high quality matcha they use as well as the overall confectionery techniques they employ.
Shimizu Ippoen is located in Higashiyama ward, very close to Hyatt Regency Kyoto.
10 min walk from Shichijo station.
12 min walk from JR Tofukuji station.
Saryou Suisen (茶寮翠泉):
- Address: 665 Honkawaracho, Shiokoji Dori Higashi Oji, Higashiyama-ku, Kyoto, Japan
- Address (in Japanese): 京都府京都市東山区塩小路通東大路本瓦町665
- Tel: 075-202-7964
- Opening time: 11:30 ～ 17:30 (L.O. 16:30)
- Website: http://ippoen.co.jp/