Chef Mark Hellyar's Secret For Momotaro's Success Is Remaining Unique

Chef Mark Hellyar's Secret For Momotaro's Success Is Remaining Unique

While in Tokyo, Chef Mark Hellyar worked at Oak Door, Keyekazaka, and Shunbou. Through his experiences, he gained a deep appreciation of Japanese dining, culture, and way of life.

“I just saw like the difference in quality in all the ingredients around me. All the fruit, vegetables, things like that… it’s treated completely different, a whole different respect for ingredients,” said Chef Hellyar about the way the Japanese approach food. “Where we simmer stocks, there they boil them. The way you break down a fish, it’s completely different… you really have to train yourself... retrain yourself.”

Now, as the executive chef of the West Loop Chicago restaurant, Momotaro, Hellyar prides himself in his minimalistic style of cooking. For him it’s about “really focusing and honing in on the one core ingredient.”

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Much Anticipated Otoko Restaurant to Open in Austin in March

Grilled Meat Platter  | Facebook, Paul Qui

Grilled Meat Platter | Facebook, Paul Qui

After much delay, Paul Qui's highly anticipated Otoko restaurant has finally announced it will be opening its doors in Austin sometime in March. The sushi and kaiseki concept promises to offer local Austin diners a number of unique, chef-driven Japanese dishes offered as part of a multi-course omakase menu that can be paired with a variety of both alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverage pairings. 

The restaurant has been eagerly awaited since Food & Wine Magazine named Otoko as one of its 'must try' culinary destinations. Read More

Austin Welcomes Newest Asian Eatery, Fukumoto

Fukumoto  | Yelp, Scott T.

Fukumoto | Yelp, Scott T.

Austin welcomes its newest Japanese eatery Fukumoto, opened by Chef Kazu Fukumoto. Gaining a reputation for his expertly prepared sushi, Fukumoto opened his eponymous restaurant to feature another side of Japanese cuisine: yakitori, a style of cuisine the chef found lacking in Austin's vibrant culinary scene.

Yakitori cuisine involves cooking over a  high heat Japanese Bichotan charcoal, a process Fukumoto studied intensively in his native Japan before bringing his concept to Austin. And while the restaurant took longer to open than the chef predicted, he is now excited to welcome diners to come and try yakitori for themselves. Read More