Meet Jiro Ono, an 85 year old master sushi chef at his exclusive restaurant in Tokyo, Sukiyabashi Jiro.
This shokunin, Jiro is an 85-year-old master chef living in Tokyo with a restaurant that is exclusively dedicated to the culinary creation of the perfect sushi. He has two sons, Takashi who now owns his own sushi restaurant in the Roppongi Hills and Yoshikazu, the eldest, who will eventually take over from his father.
This restaurant is really exclusive, seating only 10 people at a time and having a 3-month reservation period. It has been awarded 3 stars by Michelin, the highest rating possible and is held in such high esteem by many including the acclaimed French chef, Joel Robuchin, who states that he wishes he had Jiro’s exquisite sense of smell.
Jiro spent his life dedicated to perfecting the art of sushi making, seemingly having no hobbies, not really wanting to take holidays and defining himself by his work. His obsession is clearly the most important part of his world. His attention to detail is astonishing.
We see his son, Yoshikazu visiting the fish markets and the level of criteria that must be met to find the perfect fish is astounding. These chefs are not mucking about.
Directed with love and respect by David Gelb, this is truly enlightening into the world of this genius. The music, featuring the likes of Philip Glass, Max Richter and the London Philharmonic Orchestra, is brilliant; classical music to suit the depth of this man’s dedication to perfection.
This is what Gelb had to say about the use of music:
“In hindsight, I think it works because Philip Glass’s music is kind of a metaphor for Jiro’s work ethic, because it’s repetitive but it also builds on itself and escalates, and it’s the same with Jiro’s work. Because every day he’s going, he’s doing the same routine, and trying to do everything exactly the same, but just reaching for that one step of improvement, and I feel like the music’s doing the same thing, so they match perfectly.”
A beautiful insight into the workings of one of great masters and his tireless craft.