Located in an alley near Karasuma station is ‘Amairo’, a small cafe that is famous for their round taiyaki, a Japanese cake (usually fish-shaped) filled with either azuki (sweet bean paste), custard or a mix of the two.
‘Amairo Taiyaki’ is off the beaten path and can be a little hard to find. The narrow entrance of the alley is located next to a shop and almost seems part of the shop or a private entrance to back of the shop. It has no clear signs except for a small chalkboard that hangs inside the entrance so it doesn’t stand out. Once you do find the entrance, walk all the way to the back and you will find the shop on your left.
The café has a retro Japanese-style dark-wood latticework (we are in Kyoto after all) facade with glass windows.
The shop has a casual and simple interior. There are two counter-tables with counter-chairs, one standing table and two small benches next to a window in the back with a view of a small Japanese garden.
Amairo has a simple menu that offers drinks: “coffee, soda or juice” and of course the their main treat, Amairo’s TAIYAKI.
Amairo’s taiyaki are quite unique as their shape is different from the ordinary fish-shaped taiyaki which is usually a shape of a fish laying on its side. The taiyaki sold at Amairo are curled-up round fish shaped taiyaki.
The taiyaki comes with 3 types of fillings: “custard, azuki (sweet bean paste) or a mix of both”.
They are freshly baked upon ordering and go very well with a cup of coffee.
If you are in Kyoto a visit to Amairo is heavily recommended.