To celebrate obtaining his third star, Kei Kobayashi is publishing a third book, alternating cooking recipes and stories.
[Updated November 2, 2022 at 11:25 a.m.] And three! After releasing two books, each celebrating the achievement of a first and then a second star at the Guide Michelin , Kei Kobayashi releases his third book on November 2, In III, a nod to the ultimate distinction won in 2020.
Throughout the 304 pages written by Chihiro Masui and photographed by Richard Haughton, you will (re)discover the career and cooking philosophy of the Japanese chef. The book, divided into six chapters imagined as a menu, alternates between cooking recipes, stories and striking pictures on a black background. A book that is both 'graphic and aspirational' where you will find the plates signatures of Kei Kobayashi but also his contemporary vision of cuisine, tinged with this Franco-Japanese duality that sets him apart. In III , released on November 2, is available for €75 from Flammarion editions.
Born on August 29, 1977 in Nagano, Kei Kobayashi grew up with a father who was a cook in a traditional restaurant. kaiseki . His taste for cooking came as a teenager. 'Q When I was 15, I watched cooking shows on TV in Japan. I remember the great Alain Chapel very well! I was fascinated by the outfits of the chefs. The black pants, the white jackets, the toques… that's what really attracted me' , he explains to Yonder. He then trained in French gastronomy in French restaurants in Nagano and Tokyo and became familiar with products and techniques.
In December 1998, Kei arrives in Paris with 1000 euros in his pocket . And begins a tour of France of the great starred restaurants: L'Auberge du Vieux Puits ( Gilles Goujon ), Le Prieuré, in Villeneuve-lès-Avignon, Le Cerf, in Marlenheim… He learned to love game, beef, lamb and even pigeon, products that would become part of his personal repertoire.
In 2003, he joined the teams of Alain Ducasse and rub shoulders Jean-Francois Trap and Christophe Moret . 'Is-bas, I learned to work on the best of each product every day.' Eight years later, he realizes his teenage dream: to become the chef of his own restaurant. The Kei restaurant opens its doors at 5 rue Coq Héron, in the heart of Paris. In this enterprise, Chikako, his wife, is more than a precious support. ' It is thanks to her that we opened the restaurant', says the chef in all humility in Slate.
Between the walls, the Zen spirit of Japan is at the rendezvous in the Kei restaurant: a sleek style in silver gray tones and punctuated with refined touches (chandelier and Saint-Louis sconces). 'Thirty place settings are thirty different faces and that constitutes a setting' , justifies Kei on his site. If the beginnings are rather difficult, the arrival of his first star in 2013 opens the door to success. Above all, the chef is refining a very personal style where French gastronomy travels according to his Asian and Italian inspirations, two cuisines that he likes. Kei has the gift of 'produce something new without falling into the anecdotal' , said of him Alain Ducasse.
Whether in his lunch menu at €68 or his less Prestige at €230 , he wants to shake up the codes and create a culinary experience based on the irreproachable quality of the products. 'I am a very difficult boy, working with me is a lot of stress, I monitor everything, I validate everything. Compared to a Frenchman, it may be more difficult' , he says on the Food & Sens website.
But this rigor led to the ultimate Michelin guide award in 2020. Three stars, a first for a Japanese chef in France . “He borders on perfection” , can we read in the famous red guide. To date, apart from a few collaborations – making Japanese artisanal knives, television participation in Top Boss 2021–, Kei Kobayashi does not want to open other restaurants . ' It's my home, I have to not disperse myself and focus on my cooking and my customers' , he says on the Fine Dining Lovers website.
In 2014 and 2019, the chef released two books simply called Kei. The opportunity is perfect for better understand the culinary universe and its rich and varied creative palette. In the first volume, he reveals his cult recipes. In the second, he makes tribute to his mentors (Alain Chapel, Gilles Goujon, Alain Ducasse…) through 50 recipes made and reinterpreted. 'Cooking is a story of respect and transmission, a story of friendship and complicity in the world of stars.' On November 2, 2022, he released a third book, Kei III, to celebrate his third Michelin star won in 2020.
The chef's cuisine is a cross between his French and Japanese influences, like the beignet d' asparagus with yuzu powder. The chef is also known for his pot-au-feu of cold vegetables with eggplant caviar, his potato gnocchi and Iberian ham or his roasted sea bass with crispy scales, according to the book by Véronique André 'Little Secrets of Great Chefs' , published in September 2021 by Hachette Pratique editions. Several recipes have won over the hearts of gourmets for a long time, starting with a starter that reflects the chef's culinary maturity. It is a garden of crunchy vegetables, smoked salmon from Scotland, arugula mousse, emulsion of citron , tomato vinaigrette and black olive crumble. ' IN simply extraordinary creation , shining proof of a talent that has reached maturity' , writes the guide on this dish.
For dessert, he collaborates with the restaurant's excellent pastry chef, Toshiya Takatsuka . Together, they achieve an unprecedented experience: a unstructured Vacherin with a heart that evolves with the seasons . Pineapple ice cream, passion fruit, basil sorbet and coulis, citron face and kombawa zest... A low-sweetened dessert of incredible freshness that makes you want to sit down at your restaurant as soon as possible!Source journaldesfemmes.fr