Kiwa is located in a residential area, a five-minute walk from the east exit of Yoyogi-Uehara Station. Since opening in 2020, this restaurant has quickly gained a following among locals and tempura devotees.
Owner Shinichi Tomori is a genuine tempura chef, having worked for 12 years at Tempura Yamanoue Roppongi in Tokyo. The name “Kiwa” denotes joy, a sentiment that Tomori hopes to impart among each of his guests.
Ingredients for the tempura are carefully selected in season. In spring, edible wild plants from Niigata arrive each morning and in summer, seafood is sourced from nearby Toyosu market at its peak. In addition to tempura over rice and tencha (tempura over rice in tea), a refreshing dish of cold Inaniwa udon noodles is served as the last dish in summer. In autumn, chestnuts, matsutake mushrooms and ginkgo nuts are at their best, while in winter, pufferfish dishes are served to reflect the change of seasons.
The Tomori-style of tempura favoured by the restaurant prefers the use of 100% Taihaku sesame oil instead of a blended frying oil, a method that ensures a light, crisp tempura. As an accompaniment, grilled salt from Tomori’s hometown in Okinawa is recommended. Meanwhile, dipping sauce for the popular tempura over rice is made by combining mirin, sake, soy sauce, and bonito soup stock, without any additional sugar.
For its signature dish, fresh sea urchin is deftly deep-fried with shiso leaves mixed with Japanese mustard. Another dish of sweet potato washed with white wine and served with sherry is a dish that also serves as an homage to Tempura Yamanoue. From March to June, shrimp from Okinawa, directly delivered from farms, are a must-try.
The restaurant focuses on natural wine and offers two to three types of sake per season. Among them, the owner’s favorite sake, Denshu by Aomori Nishida Shuzo, is available year round, and the limited Sotogahama is also available.
A relaxed, stylish design showcases eye-catching details, such as glass walls and an entrance garden covered with pebbles. Guests are seated at a 10-person counter, or one of two tables designed for small parties. "We hope that customers who are experts in tempura and those who have never tried tempura before enjoy it," Tomori says.
The restaurant is ideal for a dinner with family or friends, a date, or business gatherings.
* 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 2-minute walk from Yoyogi-Uehara Station on Odakyu Odawara Line