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Interview of Supporter Stores Asai Kaiseki Cuisine

Asai opened Asai Kaiseki Cuisine after working as a chef and a head chef in prominent hotels in various countries

Mexico City / Mexico

Introducing authentic Japanese cuisine through kaiseki to Mexico

The Polanco district is known as one of Mexico's high-end residential areas and is lined with world-famous restaurants. The owner-chef Yasuo Asai has built up his experience in many countries including Mexico. Asai Kaiseki Cuisine, which specializes in kaiseki, attracts many people in the district. The restaurant's popularity among local people is supported by the fact that 70% of its customers are Mexican and 20% are Japanese.

In Mexico, Japanese restaurants generally offer a wide range of dishes without limiting their offerings. “I want to offer basic and authentic Japanese cuisine. If you want to know more about Japanese food, visit Asai Kaiseki Cuisine.” This is Asai's desire that led him to open this restaurant.

Promoting Japanese food with sustainability in mind

Many of the customers of Asai Kaiseki Cuisine prefer Japanese seasonings that are familiar to the Japanese, such as ponzu and yuzu pepper. In addition to miso, mirin (sweet sake), and other seasonings, fresh yellowtail, young yellowtail, and other fish from Japan have good reputation. ”In the future, I want to procure valuable ingredients that can only be sourced from Japan more, such as sweetfish and Pacific saury. Sweetfish looks beautiful and is an ideal food to let our customers know about Japanese cuisine,” says Asai.

In Mexico, the concept of sustainability is rapidly gaining importance in the restaurant industry. Prominent Mexican chefs are selecting ingredients based on the concept. Asai says he wants to continue activities with full consideration of the concept of sustainability as he promotes Japanese food in Mexico.

Wishing to offer “authentic Japanese food”

Asai has been expanding the field of his activities year by year by franchising the “Asai Kaiseki Cuisine” brand to well-known hotels and other establishments in Mexico, sharing his thoughts on Japanese food, creating recipes, and training local employees. While visiting hotels directly and expanding the scope of his activities, he came to know that “misinterpreted” Japanese cuisine still exists while the presence of Japanese food in Mexico is increasing day by day. “Unfortunately, many of the Japanese food currently popular in Mexico and overseas are the “misinterpretation” of authentic Japanese cuisine. I feel that we need to offer “authentic” Japanese food and correct the misinterpretation. However, we do not totally deny the current Japanese food business outside Japan. I believe that it is important to maintain the quality of authentic Japanese cuisine and also accept the “Japanese cuisine business” outside Japan,” says Asai.

Striving to promote Japanese cuisine in Mexico with a sense of mission

In 2022, Asai was appointed as a Japanese Cuisine Goodwill Ambassador in recognition of his past achievements.

“I have always been promoting Japanese cuisine and educating employees, but now that I have been appointed as the Japanese Cuisine Goodwill Ambassador, I feel I have a greater mission. While Asai Kaiseki Cuisine continues to be the foundation of my activities, my priority of promoting Japanese food through education and information dissemination in various places has increased,” says Asai. With the experience and knowledge he has cultivated so far, he will no doubt make further efforts to promote Japanese food culture in Mexico.

List of shops

Asai Kaiseki Cuisine
Neuchatel Cuadrante Polanco Av Rio San Joaquin 498, Local R-03, Amp Granada, Ciudad de México, 11529 CDMX
+52 55 5087 2432 site: a new window will open. site: a new window will open.