villa aida ranked 14th in “Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants 2022”.
It’s also an honor for us to be able to receive the Highest New Entry Award.
Watching our fellow chefs going out on the international scene from city areas with longing eyes, I was thinking I was kind of hopeless of getting an award like this as staying in Iwade, Wakayama prefecture. So I would be so happy if this news could encourage restaurants and chefs that continue to challenge in rural areas.
At any rate… who supported us and voted for villa aida… Our customers and farm producers who always support us… and our fellow chefs who encourage us anytime we are having a hard time…. Although this kind of detailed information isn’t supposed to be shared with us, everyone’s faces come into our minds and it looks like we won't be able to sleep tonight. We really appreciate their support.
We are hoping that restaurants can be the linking bridge of the world through this award, and also looking forward to guests around the world experiencing our proposed cuisine and time.
March 29th, 2022
Kanji & Yumi Kobayashi
Being here in Wakayama,
we can make things you won't find anywhere else.
Over 100 different types of vegetable are grown in the fields around our restaurant. We judge the size and shape of each vegetable, and draw out their infinite potential by pairing them properly with other ingredients
Our philosophy is …for our health, and to protect future generations of children. It means understanding the laws of nature, and living a rich life according to the oft-forgotten wisdom of our grandparents. We live in the natural surroundings, so we create preserves and wines from the fruits found in our gardens. We candy, pickle and dry the abundant vegetables taken from the farms of villa AiDA so that they do not go to waste. In the summer, we preserve our plentiful tomatoes by bottling them. In the fall, we harvest the rice and collect our olives, pickling them in salt. Through these everyday moments, we find ourselves saying "Ah, summer (or fall) is here," and we are able to experience the passage of a year. We are grateful for the "time" that went into each single piece of food, from the moment the seeds were sown to the moment of harvest, and all of the people who involved themselves in that process.
We are especially grateful for the land and weather of Wakayama, and all of the farmers and fishermen who support us. We are grateful for our families, and the cooks who prepare our meals. Yet, with more people moving to the city, and the ability to find just about anything at the supermarket, it seems as though it is becoming more difficult to sense the relationship that our food has with time.
People lead busy lives. We have less and less time to spend thinking about our food, let alone enjoying it. Everyone has their own opinion on what leading a rich life means, but I think this has something to do with it. Together with local producers and nearby products, we would like to create a place that affords opportunities for people to say "Maybe we should try to change the way we eat..."
Many years ago, I opened a small restaurant, Ristorante AiDA, in the town I grew up in. Thanks to everyone's support, it will soon be approaching its 20th year of business. Through this passage of "time," each day has brought new feelings that life is granted by nature. We hope to continue sharing warm meals produced by this land with everyone.
Surrounded by serene ocean, the beautiful hills of Wakayama produce more than just vegetables—citrus and other fruit trees also grow here. Pigs, cows and chickens that have been raised in a comfortable and safe environment are also used in a way that lets nothing go to waste. Fish, oysters and other seafood taken from nearby fishing communities produce a fresh aroma, like the sea breeze from home. We have a connection with each of these producers. Fully knowing each other's work and feelings allows us to move in the same direction, and send the same message. In our own way, we are always trying to think of things that "simply cannot be done in the city." This extends not only to the food we make, but also to our relationship with producers.
Our food begins with our staff gathering the vegetables to be used that day. The fragrance of fresh herbs and vegetables harvested from the nearby fields of villa AiDA and brought directly to the table that morning offers something truly unique.
We are also deeply grateful for the vegetable farmers and orchard keepers who support us, as well as friends who bring us fresh game, wild plants and mushrooms. With the ingredients used at villa AiDA, we know the face of each person who helped produce them. We usually do no make a point of saying this, because for us it is a natural and "everyday" occurrence.
OPEN MONDAY~SUNDAY 1２:00 ~ 21:00
We take reservations from the first day of the month prior to your intended visit. If the first of the month is a holiday, then reservations will be taken starting the following day.
For example, if you intend on visiting on July 20, reservations for that date open on June 1.
Additionally, as this is a course menu, we ask that guests not bring children younger than elementary school age.
For online reservations, please visit our page on Pocket Concierge (click here for English
Turn left after exiting the South IC of the Hanwa Expressway. From there it is approximately 12 km (or 15 minutes).
From the North IC of the Hanwa Expressway, it is approximately 16 km (or 20 minutes).
The parking lot is free to use.
Guests coming from Osaka should take the JR Hanwa Line and get off at Kii Station.
Guests coming from the Nanki area should take the JR Wakayama Line and get off at Iwade Station.
We recommend taking a taxi from the station.
By taxi, it takes 15 minutes from Kii Station, and 5 minutes from Iwade Station.
When taking a taxi, please tell the driver to take you to “AiDA in Iwade.”
For inquiries about villa AiDA, chef Kanji KOBAYASHI or special events, please contact us using the form here. We look forward to hearing from you, and will respond as quickly as we can.