Who’s in the kitchen? Chef Yusuke Takada. He studied at the Tsuji Culinary Institute, and later moved to France where he worked at Taillevent and Le Meurice, before setting up La Cime in Osaka’s bustling Hommachi district in 2010. A much loved and respected figure in the Asian gastronomic scene, Takada receives the Inedit Damm Chefs’ Choice Award 2020, through which the cooks behind the restaurants on the Asia’s 50 Best list recognise an outstanding peer.
Iconic dishes: One of Takada’s signature entrees is his Boudin Dog. Essentially, it’s a boudin noir in dough, coloured black with edible bamboo charcoal. Despite the name, it looks more like a black rock than a hot dog.
Keeping in touch with his roots: Takada likes to incorporate ingredients such as citrus from his birthplace, the southern island of Amami Oshima, which lies between Kyushu and Okinawa. He also draws inspiration from the dishes he grew up eating that were cooked by his mother and grandmother.
Talented understudy: One of Takada’s protégés, 29-year-old Yasuhiro Fujio, represented Japan at the S.Pellegrino Young Chef 2018 competition in Milan. He won the cook-off event with a dish that combined a quintessentially Japanese ingredient, ayu (sweetfish), with impeccable French technique and superb presentation — a perfect summation of the cuisine at La Cime.
The only way is up: La Cime debuted on the Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants list in 2018, when it appeared at No.17, earning the title of Highest New Entry. Since then, the restaurant has been rising in the list, breaking into the top ten in 2020.