Saiin Cocoro

Pub in Saiin that's worth visiting on daily basis

Text & Photo / Kenta Baba 

'I love this town because of this place'

Wouldn't it be wonderful to be able to meet a place that makes you feel so?

BEACON KYOTO is exploring spots based on a theme 'place to take friends around in Kyoto'. We are focusing more on daily favorites, not much on 'tourist-must-go' places. And that is why we have number of places that's really cool. 

こころ Takada Smile, a sing a song writer that's so into pubs in Kyoto, declares Saiin is the best town in Kyoto, and that is why he is living there.

We are featuring one of the 2 pubs he states as his favorites.

Saiin Cocoro.

Walk about 5-10 minutes from Hankyu Saiin Station and you will get there.

It's popular for lunch time users, too. They are quite known for their seafood rice bowl (500-800 yen).

They are simply good! Both for lunch and dinner use. 
Good taste and good price! 


As they are offering obanzai food, they serve traditional home style cooking of Kyoto. Their fish are freshly purchased from the Central Market.

It's a perfect place for those who wants Kyoto-food, pure Japanese cuisine and good sake.

Here's the menu.

You can see that they have a friendly prices.

They set the prices with a mind for the customers to come on daily basis.  

 Their popular nikujaga (potato and beef stew, 380 yen), fried chicken (110 yen/piece x2), beer (380 yen). All this can be enjoyed for 980 yen! I would be happy enough to just stop by casually and have a meal by myself.

Fried chicken (110 yen/piece) comes in a BIG size, too. 

What's really unique is that this place is served by a musician, Fresh Kota.

A mother of his friend used to run a pub here, but he took over when she retired. 

Many of his music fellows come here, as well as his neighbors.

Customers can enjoy his selection of the day's BGM as well as live music sometimes.

I visited right before Christmas, so the BGM was Tatsuro Yamashita's best album, TREASURES.  

Kota has been lured by the world of sake ever since he started a pub here. 

He has a collection of sake that will make people not so keen of it to fall in love.

He get help from his friends, this day was with S.S.  

It's fun to watch those good friends chat and fool around with, it made me feel comfortable like being with my own friends.

Some CDs being sold here.

They have a bar counter for single customers, and a table seats for groups.

It's a pub for the neighbors to come on daily basis, but I feel the friendly price and atmosphere is also recommendable to tourists, too.

Although Saiin is a bit far out from THE KYOTO tourist area, and they do not have much hotels around, they are increasing in attractive spots to visit. I myself felt I discovered a new area to explore. 

When you want to enjoy casual dining in a new place, try out Cocoro. 

〈Saiin Cocoro〉

ADDRESS: 1st Floor Dai-Ni Shinwa Building, 46-2 Saiin Kitayakae-cho, Ukyo-ku, Kyoto(map)
PHONE: +81(0)75-325-5280
HOURS: Lunch 11:30-14:00 Dinner 18:00-24:00
CLOSED: Irregular holidays (Please check the website)