A café by day and restaurant by night, Ukishima Garden is where delectable food and organic wines are enjoyed by omnivores and herbivores alike. They boast a dedication towards using only the finest and local organic ingredients on the island.
Ukishima Garden is a charming, romantic cafe tucked away near Naha’s bustling Kokusai Street–perfect for date nights or a relaxed lunch date with friends. They boast a dedication towards using only the finest and local organic ingredients on the island. In a way, Ukishima Garden pays respect to the island’s fertile soil and plentiful sunlight that provides a wide assortment of unique vegetables by using as much local produce as possible.
Similar to Mana Natural Food and Snack‘s interior décor, Ukishima Garden has earthy-chic, French countryside style that’s very popular at “natural” cafes in Japan. The atmosphere in Ukishima Garden changes depending on the time of your visit. By day, it is a casual cafe that offers a small selection of set lunches. By night, it turns into this cozy spot for a romantic date night. They add a touch of romance by dimming the lights and lighting candles.
The menu is full of creativity that needs several visits before you can enjoy them all. Their lunch menu features taco rice, veggie burgers, curry, and soup served with bread while for dinner they serve vegan steak, pasta, and a selection of Okinawa specialty dishes.
The burger was a hearty, healthy veggie burger made with locally sourced ingredients and millet grains. Millet is a very unique ingredient to be using in a vegan pattie, but it worked really well; the texture was pleasing and gave the burger a good amount of density. The pattie was perfectly paired with a rich, grainy mustard and just the ride amount of salad. While portion looked small initially, your stomach and eyeballs will be fooled, as the burger had enough going on to feel satisfied (without being uncomfortably full). It was simple and yet unique in flavor and texture. This is one of our favorite dishes at Ukishima Garden, among other dishes.
Another of our favorite dish at Ukishima Garden is their Tofu Caprese Salad. This is another item I have not seen any vegan restaurants in Asia offer before, so Ukishima gets more points for uniqueness and creativity.
I never had a vegan Caprese salad before and it was executed flawlessly. This is such a simple yet genius combination of ingredients – juicy tomatoes, fresh and fragrant herbs, salty tofu, with a drizzle of good olive oil for good measure. The tofu is prepared to offer just the right texture in place of cheese.
It was fresh, healthy, and gorgeously presented.
With a focus on sharing, Ukishima is best enjoyed tapas style; with a date or with friends, order a few things and let people try a bit of it all. So without wanting to seem too greedy, we also got the Okinawan potato dish. Anything with the word ‘potato’ in it is too hard to pass up!
If you ever thought “I wonder what the root vegetables of Okinawa taste like” then this could be the dish for you. With fresh young Okinawan potato and yam served in a variety of ways there is nothing simple about this dish. The best was the local yam, mashed with mushroom and served wrapped and baked into a flaky filo pastry. A vegan cream on the side, works as the perfect condiment for this dish.
The quality of food served in Ukishima Garden, shows how dedicated they are to the cause and providing healthy yet delicious food to their customers. Their Spaghetti Millet Carbonara along with the Tofu Caprese Salad is the perfect example of how vegan food doesn’t mean just salad or that you have to miss out on anything through choosing a cruelty-free lifestyle.
Overall, the prices for dinner lean to the more expensive side, but the value for money is not bad and again, take your girl or boy here on a date night and you are winning! If your budget is limited, try dining at Ukishima Garden during lunch hours, as they will serve a set lunch at a more affordable price range.
If you are interested to try Ukishima Garden but don’t have the opportunity to go to Okinawa, you are in luck. Ukishima Garden just opened a new branch in Kyoto! Menu items may differ but rest assured that their passion for offering quality vegan food is consistent!
HOW TO GET THERE?
ADDRESS: 2-12-3 Matsuo Naha, Okinawa, Japan 〒900-0014 沖縄県那覇市松尾2-12-3
PHONE: +81 98-943-2100
HOURS: Monday to Friday 11:30 am – 03:00 pm ; 06:00 pm – 10:00 pm
ADDRESS: 543 asakura-cho, Nakagyo-ku, Kyoto-city ; 〒604-8074 京都府京都市中京区富小路通六角上る 朝倉町543
PHONE: +81 75-754-8333
HOURS: 11:30 am – 03:00 pm ; 06:00 pm – 11:00 pm ; Closed on Wednesdays