C'est la Chine · Tokyo EP3 | Taste of home abroad: Japanese izakaya owner recreates authentic Chinese dishes
In an izakaya called Wild Monkey in Tokyo, you can find really authentic Chinese dishes here and even Chinese liquor. The menu is not limited to a particular cuisine style, but includes popular dishes from all over China, such as vinegar pepper soup, grilled lamb skewers and spicy hotchpotch.
A Sino-Japanese couple owns the little bar. "This izakaya is his (Hideo Ohara's) dream," said Xuanli, the proprietress of the bar, who is from Qingdao, China.
After visiting China in person and experiencing the authentic taste of China, Hideo Ohara was completely overwhelmed by Chinese cuisine and later came up with the idea of opening a restaurant to make more Japanese people fall in love with Chinese food culture.
"In Japan, many Chinese restaurants make localized adjustments to their dishes in order to cater to the tastes of Japanese diners." To Hideo Ohara, this is "fake Chinese cuisine." He wants to bring the most authentic Chinese flavors to Japanese diners, so that "real Chinese cuisine" can take root in Japan.
In addition to local customers, Izakaya attracts many Chinese customers from other countries as well. "The Chinese usually order many skewers of lamb, five or ten skewers together, and they eat a lot and enjoy the food. "
Hideo Ohara told us that he hopes more Japanese people can learn about the "taste of China" and that he hopes to let Chinese people wandering in foreign countries find the taste of home abroad.