********** Yoshinori Ishii Executive chef of Japanese restaurant UMU in London ******************

------------------ 英国の日本料理店 UMU 総料理長 石井義典 のつれづれなる話 ------------

Saturday, 18 August 2012

London 2012 ロンドンオリンピック

As the city got excited and enthusiastic for London 2012 and prepared for chaos that might be brought together with this global festival, Umu also got ready by planning ahead meticulously, adjusting menus and securing ingredients. Nonetheless, contrary to everyone’s expectation, the city became deserted as the games had begun and its severeness was even widely broadcasted. 

As much as we appreciated visits from the event’s contributors and athletes and they sure did put us in better mood at the restaurant, we also firmly persisted on keeping our style/motto which is to value every single guest on daily basis, by not excessively attending special events. In other words, we are having our usual summer here.
 Meanwhile, Ms. Midori Endo, a ceramic artist of Bernard Leach Pottery who I have mentioned few times in this blog, kindly made time out of her busy schedule to help firing my creation of ceramics so I had a quick, brief day trip to St. Ives in very limited time. I cannot thank her enough fro finishing up to the very last touch of my ceramic works in significantly short period of time, even though all the while, she had preparation for her own exhibition at Takashimaya, Nihonbashi (renowned department store in Tokyo) as well as her duties in working with Mr. Jack Doherty, a chief potter at Leach Pottery. Moreover, she generously delivered back part of the finished ceramics all the way to London in person, just a day before her flight back to Japan.
 Also I found some time fro myself to photograph new ideas of food presentations on newly made dishes, together with some of Ms. Midori’s works I have borrowed. This was my first attempt to use soda-fired potteries, a speciality method of Ms. Midori/Leach pottery, for purpose of food arrangement. Regardless to slight struggle in combining foods and the unique ceramics into beautiful unison, I had very blissful time.  
While the world is experiencing the fever and excitement of the Olympic game, at Umu we are experiencing rather typical relaxing summer ‘12.   

さんの手伝いが控えていながら、ほとんど寝る間も無く短期間で全てをこなしてくださり、感謝感激です!日本に帰られる前の日に、わざわざロンドンまで完成品の一部を届けてくれました。そんな中、バーナード.リーチ工房で活動されている遠藤みどりさんが私の形作った食器の焼成を忙しい合間を縫ってやってくださることとなり、ほとんど日帰り状態でセントアイビスを往復してきました。みどりさんは日本橋高島屋での自らの個展と主任陶芸家であるJack Doherty