chef

Chef David Bouley – Bouley, NY

by Rui Kojima on April 24, 2011

Chef Bouley recommends the Usaba, Yanagi and Deba for those curious about buying their first traditional style Japanese knife!

David Bouley worked in restaurants around the world before opening his own in 1987. Located in TriBeCa, Bouley earned a myriad of awards and recognition and is the only restaurant to achieve a 29 out of 30 food rating in Zagat Survey. After 9/11, he opened “Green Tarp” at Ground Zero to feed relief workers 24 hours a day for four weeks. He has combined his love of French and American cuisines with that of Japan to open both a sushi section of Bouley Bakery and to work with the famed Tsuji Cooking School in his cutting-edge test kitchen.

 

You have been very involved with Japanese cuisine and the Tsuji Cooking School in your test kitchen. What are the most important things you’ve learned from the collaboration?

Eight years ago I had an opportunity to go abroad and cook for the royal family of Thailand. I spent 2-3 weeks beforehand with Mr. Shizuo Tsuji. We started with the basics: salt, types of fish, dashi, miso. I was fortunate to get this preliminary understanding – it was Japan’s Culinary Culture 101! Over the years I was able to build on that knowledge, learn more and go deeper into topics like the preparation for Kaiseki, regional cooking (we even studied Okinawa), miso…we made 70-100 dishes in a week with Mr.Tsuji in the test kitchen because understanding the basic elements of anything is key.

 

What is the most important aspect of cooking to you?

To be a chef you must star t out by gaining an intimate relationship with the products you are using and building solid technique to use them. Once you have these two things, you can go off and be creative.

 

What do you think of the recent popularity of Japanese food and Japanese knives?

Increased interest in Japanese food is a great thing in the fact that it makes it easier for us to get fine quality artisanal product from Japan now, but you still need the proper knowledge to use those ingredients, in the same way that you need to know how to use a tool like a traditional Japanese knife. I had four days of intensive training in Japan when I started using Japanese knives and was lucky enough to visit knife makers and see how the knives are made. This type of comprehensive knowledge is important.

 

Which is your most often used knife?

I use carbon steel – they remind me of the old style. The single-edged traditional Japanese knives are perfect for what they are designed to do. Take the Yanagi, for example. The one-sided blade pulls the meat up onto the long, flat edge as you slice and you can make a cleaner cut with less crushing of the cells of the food.

 

Do you have any advice for chefs who are thinking about buying their first traditional style Japanese knife?

The Usuba,Yanagi, Deba – if you are going to use a tool, you should learn how to use it. Read about the tool, learn how it works, what it’s made for. You have to learn to use a tool – a knife, a motorcycle, a product – to its full potential as it was originally designed. The well designed knife already knows what to do. You must learn to let the knife do its own thing. Then you will appreciate that knife. When buying knives you must understand yourself and your interests.You should know what your job is and understand what your knife has to do.You don’t need the most expensive knife; you need to learn how to use the engineering for what it was made for – and enjoy the ride!

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Chef Daniel Boulud – Daniel, NY

by Rui Kojima on April 23, 2011

"Knives are essential tools to be respected and cared for. You choose a knife like you choose fine ingredients, only the best. Korin stands for that. "

Daniel Boulud is a chef needing little introduction. As Chef-Owner of some of the country’s finest restaurants, author of numerous cookbooks and creator of kitchenware and gourmet products, Chef Boulud is an inspiration to many. One of America’s leading culinary authorities, Chef Boulud makes numerous television and radio appearances, lectures at culinary institutions and works tirelessly for countless charity organizations. His restaurants include Daniel, Café Boulud, DB Bistro Moderne, BAR BOULUD and Daniel Boulud Brasserie in the Wynn Resort and Country Club in Las Vegas.

 

You were recently voted the “Best Chef to Work for” in one of the New York magazines…how does this make you feel?

When I was a young chef working for great mentors such as Roger Vergé, Georges Blanc or Michel Guérard, I did not realize I would be training young cooks someday myself. Now I am inspired by their energy and talent, and the creative collaboration we share is wonderful.To see them succeed is incredibly rewarding, whether they become chefs in my restaurants or go off to pursue other dreams. Nurturing young talent is a must for the future and is also a privilege.

 

Are you ever homesick for France?

I will always be French in my soul, but I feel New York has really adopted me and become my home. It is where I have raised my family and created my restaurants. DANIEL BOULUD Daniel, New York I stay in touch regularly with the community of chefs in France, when I travel there or when French chefs come to New York. This year I am bringing Gilles Verot, an incredible Parisian charcutier to New York so we can work together on the menu for my new BAR BOULUD. The lines of communication between the food scenes in France and New York are very open.

 

What do your knives mean to you?

Knives are essential tools to be respected and cared for. You choose a knife like you choose fine ingredients, only the best. Korin stands for that.

 

What is the most important aspect of cooking to you? Cooking is creating in a way that brings pleasure and makes people happy. Whether it’s a sophisticated four star meal or a humble dish, we cook to bring people together.

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David Myers – Sona, LA

by Rui Kojima on April 22, 2011

Chef Myers not only recommends Japanese knives but Japanese Mandolins as well!

David Myers began his life-long infatuation with food as a child helping out in the gardens on his grandparents’ farm. Working for Chefs Charlie Trotter, Gerard Boyer, and a protégé of Daniel Boulud, Myers prospered as a chef. His career as Owner-Chef of Los Angeles’ Sona has earned him numerous accolades, television appearances and appreciative fans.

 

What is your advice for young chefs and young people considering the career?

You should focus on work, not money. Spend money on things that will make you a better chef such as great knives, traveling, dining in great restaurants, and books.

 

What is your favorite thing about shopping at Korin?

Korin is an absolute wonderland and candy shop for people who love knives. Korin and the entire team put a special spark in the whole place.

 

Have you used Japanese cooking and kitchen tools aside from the knives?

I have used Japanese mandolins, Japanese graters, and Japanese rice cookers. The Japanese mandolins are the best, they work brilliantly. It has a simple design, a clear function, is light weight, and easy to travel with. The Japanese graters are perfect for ginger and wasabi. The craftsmanship is great.

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Chef Kenichiro Ooe – Kozue, Park Hyatt Tokyo

April 20, 2011

Kenichiro Ooe is the man behind the elegant meals served at Kozue Restaurant in the Park Hyatt Tokyo. As Kozue’s Chef de Cuisine, Ooe has created a menu that includes his own interpretation of Kaiseki, the refined cuisine that traditionally accompanies the Japanese tea ceremony, and Fugu (blowfish), which he holds a government-issued license to [...]

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Chef Carl Redding – Amy Ruth’s, NY

April 18, 2011

Carl Redding‘s love of cooking began when he was eight years old. He learned at Harlem’s renowned Wilson’s and continued to cook when he served in the Marine Corps, bringing the taste of American soul food to Japan. As the Owner/Chef of Harlem-based Amy Ruth’s, Redding provides a variety of home-style Southern cuisine.   What [...]

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Chef Michael Romano – Union Square Cafe, NY

April 17, 2011

Michael Romano studied and flourished as a cook at the New York City Technical College, then became one of the first Americans in some of France’s most important restaurants. As the Executive Chef of Union Square Café, which he presently runs with partner Danny Meyer, Romano has helped the restaurant earn a glowing reputation; for [...]

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Chef Lionel Giraud – La Table Saint Crescent. France

April 16, 2011

Lionel Giraud is the son of onetime 2-star Michelin chef Claude Giraud. As a kid his favourite playground was his dad’s kitchen. After a diligent training at the Crillon, the Ritz and some time spent with Michel Guerard, he took off for Bucharest where he opened his restaurant La Villa Bucarest. In 2003, back in [...]

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Chef Alexandre Couillon – La Marine, France

April 15, 2011

Alexandre Couillon is the Chef and owner of La Marine, located just across the harbour in the fisherman’s town of L’Herbaudiere on Noirmoutier Island. Alexandre, a former student of Guerard and Thierr y Marx, has been recently awarded the “Hope Trophee”, a distinction among young chefs who should best serve French gastronomy’s future in the [...]

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Chef Chris Cosentino – Incanto, San Francisco

April 14, 2011

Chris Cosentino developed a passion for Italian food during his childhood in an Italian-American community in Rhode Island. He brought his talents, honed at several distinguished restaurants, to San Francisco’s Incanto in 2003, and as Executive Chef, instantly earned a three-star review from San Francisco Chronicle’s Michael Bauer.   What are the superior qualities of [...]

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Chef Philippe Puel – Le Cantou, France

April 13, 2011

Philippe Puel is the Chef and owner of Le Cantou, a peaceful restaurant set in the middle of a beautiful, well-tended garden, only ten minutes from Toulouse’s busy center. Philippe was one of our attending chefs on the 2004 Korin France Chefs Tour of Japan.   What does your knife mean to you? It’s a [...]

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