Update (October 2nd 2008): I just heard that Cafe Opal has closed but will be reopening in a new location in January 2009.
Update February 2009: Cafe Opal is back in a new location. I haven’t checked it yet but you can find a map here.
Kyoto prides itself on it’s cafe culture, and each cafe bids to outdo each other in it’s originality and quality of service. Today I checked out Café Opal, self described as the “most soulful cafe in Kyoto”. I found it spacious and curiously quiet for a Saturday afternoon on Kawaramachi, but all the more pleasing for that. The decor is also nice on the eyes, and was apparently inspired by London cafe culture. You can get a decent cup of coffee here and light meals are also available. However to be honest, I don’t rate the food so highly. As is often the case in Japan, the owners are clearly more concerned with form than with content. To sum up: ten out of ten for atmosphere, but they need to work on the menu. Here are some pictures.
You can see a menu here: Menu
And here is a map: Map
Cafe Opal is located on the 6th floor of the Ledic building on the west side of Kawaramachi street, a short walk north of Sanjo, and across from the Kyoto Royal Hotel.
Open: 12:00-00:00, (Until 01:00 on Fridays & Saturdays)?
Closed on Thursdays?