Japanese-Peruvian cuisine or Nikkei cuisine as it is more commonly known, has become incredibly popular over the years, thanks to restaurants like Peru's Maido (ranked #8 on the World's 50 Best Restaurants list) and the globally-renowned Nobu chain of restaurants. Both brands have been significant in showcasing Japanese influence on Peruvian cuisine.
This is what avant-garde Japanese eatery Kikubari in Kuala Lumpur is looking to highlight with its one-night only collaboration with Singaporean-based Peruvian cevicheria Tono on July 30.
Touted as the "only Peruvian cevicheria in Asia", Tono is the brainchild of executive chef Daniel Chavez and focuses on – as its name implies – ceviche, that delicious meal of raw fish cured in lemon or lime and typically spiced with chilli peppers.
For the collaboration in KL, Tono's head chef Tamara Chavez Lopez will be joining forces with Kikubari's Jun Wong to produce an innovative dinner using Peruvian and Japanese ingredients like scallops, sweet potatoes, Peruvian dried corn (chulpa), plantains and Peruvian dried potatoes.
“We've wanted to work with a Peruvian cevicheria for some time as we wanted to tell the story of how Japanese food has been adopted in Peru through the migration of Japanese people,” says Wong.
Indeed, the enmeshing of these two culinary cultures dates back over 100 years ago when Japanese workers started arriving in Peru as farmers. Many stayed back – starting families, integrating with locals and forging a unique culinary identity now known the world over as Nikkei cuisine.
Wong stresses that as Kikubari is not known for being a traditional Japanese restaurant, the collaboration will not entail classic fare like sushi, sashimi or hand rolls. Instead, diners can expect “cleaner flavours and an emphasis on the freshest ingredients”.
The Tono x Kikubari collaboration dinner is priced at RM398++ per person. To make a reservation, call 03-2011 8200.
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