Beautiful views of the interior garden at the Toraya Cafe
One of my favorite experiences while in Kyoto was wandering little streets, with my dear friend AM, and discovering the Toraya Cafe (Toraya Karyo Kyoto Ichijo). Returning to this little piece of heaven is a must-do the next time I visit.
I had known of Toraya, a famous maker of Japanese confections and tea sweets, from my tea studies. The company has been around since the 16th century, and is well known for its yokan. At the cafe, you can enjoy these sweets and a delicious bowl of matcha or brewed tea. If the weather is nice (and in late October, it was perfect), sit outside and take in the peace and beauty of the garden.
Enjoy these photos, and imagine a peaceful breeze that gently ripples the water, delicious and artful sweets, tea that both stimulates and soothes, and nurturing conversation. This was my experience.
I will close my eyes and go there too.
If you visit Kyoto, here's a tip: One of the retail shops is near the west side of the Imperial Palace. The cafe is tucked about a block down the side street.