A food culture is something in which you can take pride. It is a reflection of your origin. It makes you think of your childhood and specific dishes spark specific memories. We do not have to travel far to find cultures that speak proudly of their national cuisine. Take for example Italy or Spain, where you can really feel that food is almost thought of as an art form. I got my passion for food a bit further from home. At the age of 18, I was lucky enough to go to Japan. This was a truly an amazing experience, as I spend 6 days a week, 15 hours a day producing food. And that in its purest form, namely, piles of fish, half frozen, hard, cold and with sharp spines. Moreover, I could totally focus on myself as I was not able to communicate with anyone for the first six months. (Not so much because they did not want to, but they simply did not understand a word of English). In the beginning, I wondered how one could develop such a passion for a product like the one that went through my hands all day: horse mackerel. Yet, it did happen: the smell, the color, the fat content, the texture, the form, and eventually…. after a long working day, the taste. Fish is so multifaceted and horse mackerel might be the most refined one of all. I welcome you to try our traditional ‘Aji no hiraki’, to see for yourself.