The Legend, The Chef, The Artist

Jiro Dreams of Sushi (David Gelb, 2012)

For Jiro Ono, the most renowned sushi chef in the world, and owner of the 3-Star Michelin Rated restaurant “Sukiyabashi Jiro”, creating sushi is like conducting an orchestra. Jiro Dreams of Sushi is a marvelously delectable documentary, and the prime reason for that is because David Gelb, the director understood his subject on more than a professional level. As most documentaries go, this one is filled with interviews, speculations about its topic and also, predictions about the future of its subjects. What sets it apart however is the intimate, almost intrusive insight into a restaurant so hard to get to (it seats only 8 and reservations must be made months in advance), and the tingling juxtaposition between two of man’s most enjoyable pleasures: food and music. Jiro is the conductor, his sous chefs are the orchestra, and their hands are the instruments. Jiro makes it clear that to understand sushi, one must do the same as one does with music… feel it, quite literally in this sense. All of the sushi in Jiro’s restaurant is prepared and served by hand, with the palm as the violin and the fingers the bows creating a beautiful symphony. There are however, no notes on the page of Jiro’s masterpiece compositions… instead, like Mozart, Jiro uses nothing but pure intuition. A rare look inside this man’s work and life is all the more worthwhile and fascinating because it is so hard to reach and so towering in its achievement. Jiro is a living legend, a master chef, and above all, a brilliant artist.

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