Gion Maruyama first opened its doors in 1988 on an alley near the center of Gion, a geisha district in Kyoto. Also located close to Yasaka-jinja Shrine and Hanamikoji Street, this two-star Japanese restaurant offers cuisine that celebrates the culture and seasonal bounty of Kyoto.
Born in Kyoto in 1949, Chef Yoshio Maruyama, the proprietor of the restaurant, trained at Kodaiji Doi (presently known as Gion Doi) for 10 years and served as a chef at Kikunoi (presently known as Kikunoi Roan) in Kiyamachi and Kodaiji Wakuden. Then, he opened Gion Maruyama in 1988 and Kenninji Gion Maruyama in 1998. Both of them gained immense popularity and received two stars.
“It is natural flavors that I value the most, not seasonings,” Chef Maruyama says. In order to bring out the natural flavors of ingredients to tingle the taste buds of guests, the shrewd chef carefully selects quality ingredients. They are combined with seasonal ingredients, such as chub with roe and bamboo shoots in spring, sweetfish and wild conger pike from Awaji in summer, sweetfish with roe and matsutake mushrooms in autumn, and Taiza crab (snow crab) and puffer fish in winter, so that guests can enjoy the real pleasure of Kyoto cuisine that celebrates seasonal flavors.
The chef not only respects the good old traditions of Kyoto cuisine but also pays attention to tableware and decorations, including hanging scrolls, flowers, and ornaments, to make the dining environment at his restaurant more sophisticated. Thus, he continues his journey to transform Kyoto cuisine into a composite art sprinkled with a new seasoning –– a sense of beauty.
To celebrate special occasions for guests, the wine list features champagnes for toasts, such as Ruinart and Bollinger, splendid wines from Burgundy and Bordeaux, and flamboyant wines from the Kenzo Estate in California. Apart from wines, Aotake Sake, the restaurant’s original menu that features Japanese sake brewed by Tamanohikari in Kyoto and served in a green bamboo container, also enjoys great popularity for its fresh scent of bamboo.
With a red paper lantern bearing the name of the restaurant, Maruyama, at the entrance, Gion Maruyama has an elegant appearance befitting its location in Gion. The first floor has a counter seating up to eight people and a private room of 10 sq. meters with a horigotatsu-style table (low table over a hole in the floor), while the second floor has four Japanese-style rooms (each with an area of 13 to 16 sq. meters) that can be furnished with chairs or transformed into a single banquet room of 52 sq. meters.
Gion Maruyama is the perfect place to enjoy the real pleasure of Kyoto cuisine to your heart’s content while celebrating a special occasion with your family, friends, or colleagues.
※ Awarded 2 star on world-renowned gourmet guide Kyoto-Osaka 2023.
* The availability of this webpage does not guarantee that the restaurant presented provides services in English, unless otherwise stated. Please be aware that English services may also depend on staff availability at the restaurant.
A 5-minutes walk from Gion-Shijo Station on the Keihan Main Line