Meet Our Master Chef Takuji Takahashi
Born and raised in Kyoto, Japan, Master Chef Takuji Takahashi is no stranger to his local community. The third-generation successor of the Michelin-starred Kinobu Restaurant in Shimogyo-ku has come a long way.
After graduating from university, Master Chef Takahashi began his culinary training under the tutelage of the late founder of Kitcho Incorporation, Yuki Teiichi, who was one of the most accomplished and reputable chefs of all time in Japan.
For years, driven by sole passion for cooking, Master Chef Takahashi spent his time and effort mastering his culinary skills and expanding his horizons. He went on to pursue a doctoral degree in Food and Agricultural Sciences.
“Besides continuing my family’s legacy, it is also my personal mission to spread the Japanese food culture to various parts of the world,” says the Japanese Cuisine Goodwill Ambassador.
Matcha Eight’s associate farmers share a similar goal as Chef’s: to see their fruit of labour being appreciated and enjoyed as a single-origin harvest by people from abroad.
“Wazuka town is one of the best places in Japan for tea cultivation. It has a rich terroir reminiscent of French vineyards. Coupled with the excellent cultivation techniques by these young and motivated farmers, their tea leaves are the best in the region,” says Chef who is also a certified senior sommelier.
“I devised eight ice cream recipes keeping in mind the individual taste, colour and aroma of the tea leaves from the respective farmers. I carefully examined them while recalling the scenery of Wazuka-cho which changes with the seasons. The colours of the eight ice cream flavours reflect the vivid greens and rich earthy tones of the land.”
Sencha and matcha powder are sensitive to light and temperature; causing a change in colour.
“The colour of matcha fades quickly in the light. Most matcha ice creams are either made with artificial ingredients to stabilise the colour, or with bitter, darker matcha to reduce the colour change. However, I believe that the colour change is proof of natural matcha ice cream,” he explains.
“Partnering with Matcha Eight, I want to show you that the best matcha ice cream is one that changes colour, not bitter and fragrant. I hope you will enjoy the authentic taste of Matcha Eight ice cream.”