Press Release 25th October 2020
Washoku Challenge: Maki Through to Next Round!
Maki Restaurant is proud to announce yet another win in the books for them.
Two of their Group Head Chefs, Chef Percival Adrian Shedden and Chef Fernando participated in the Japanese International Washoko World Challenge, supported by Taste of Japan – Authentic Japanese Cuisine, and the Japanese Ministry of Agriculture, Forestries, and Fisheries.
The two Maki Head Chefs passed the first round through to the second and final round, but they are two out of 15 chosen chefs from all over the world to have passed – including owners and chefs of restaurants in the USA, the UK, Spain, Hong Kong, Singapore, Korea, and more.
For the first time, this competition was held online due to the COVID-19 restrictions, however, the competition remains as strong as before, with top Japanese chefs and culinary teachers as the judges. The Head Judge is Mr. Yoshihiro Murata, the Japanese Cuisine Goodwill Ambassador, Owner and Chef of Kikunoi, and Chairman of Japanese Culinary Academy.
Both chefs had to prepare two Japanese dishes each, using Japanese techniques, tastes, and methods and write two essays about the dishes and their passion for the Japanese cuisine, or Washoku.
Chef Fernando said, “I was inspired by Tonjiru Miso Soup, but made my own version called Gyunikujiru Miso Soup – a beef miso soup, with regional vegetables such as okra which is found in the Middle East as well as Japan. I included shiitake mushrooms to give it the warmth, umami, and depth present in Japanese cuisine.”
His second dish was a Grilled Gindara with Miso-honey, with Oba tempura and fried ginger.
The Deputy Head Judge Nakata Masahiro from the Kyoto Culinary College said “The first dish is a hot pot with beef and miso, and it looks very delicious and I’d like to try making it here in Japan as well. The next dish is Grilled Gindara. Adding honey to miso is very creative.”
Chef Adrian prepared a Shiso Ebi Tempura, with the main ingredient as the shiso leaf. “Shiso is a leaf indigenous to the East Asian area, and very popular in Japan, and was chosen because of how its unique flavour can complement the shrimp mixture.”
The second dish is a Unagi Chirashi, with a generous piece of unagi kabayaki, with teriyaki sauce with a twist on top of rice mixed with sashimi fish and vegetables. Matsuo Hideaki, owner and Chef of Japanese cuisine Kashiwaya in Osaka amd Japanese Cuisine Goodwill Ambassador spoke about Chef Adrian’s dishes: “I believe it must be hard to prepare good Japanese food in Kuwait. But I could tell from these dishes that they’re prepared with very high techniques of Japanese cuisine. I appreciate them very much because they’re unique Japanese dishes created in Kuwait.”
Chef Adrian and Chef Fernando have been part of the Maki team for years. They bring pride for not only the Maki Group, but also Kuwait and the entire region where Maki has two other branches, one in Bahrain and a franchise in Qatar.
The judges acknowledged and were humbled to see such skill level and passion for the Japanese cuisine, or Washoku, found in Kuwait and in the Maki chefs, who look after Maki’s global operations.
Maki and Maki chefs have been winning awards at different levels all around the world, from being recommended in the most esteemed Michelin Guide in the UK in 2017, to winning Gold, Silver, and Bronze Medals in the Horeca competitions, and Maki Bahrain has just won a Luxury Lifestyle Award 2020. Once again, Maki seals their status as a leading Japanese contemporary restaurant in the region.
The announcement of the finalists will be made in December 21st of 2020, please follow Maki’s Instagram and Facebook pages to find out more.
Washoku World Challenge – https://washoku-worldchallenge.jp/2020/en/