Mitsuharu 'Micha' Tsumura
All about Nikkei: When Peru meets Japan on the plate, Nikkei is born – and chef Mitsuharu ‘Micha’ Tsumura is a world-leader in this style of cuisine. This translates to a welcoming spot where fresh fish and citrus-packed sauces reign supreme. No wonder it now matches nearby Central with its three-year stint at No.1, being voted The Best Restaurant in Latin America 2019, sponsored by S.Pellegrino & Acqua Panna, after receiving the same title in 2017 and 2018.
On the menu: Chef Micha’s Nikkei Experience menu is a journey through Peruvian-Japanese fusion cuisine, with an emphasis on seafood. There are succulent tiraditos of tuna and shellfish with tiger milk, avocado and ponzu; nigiri sushi, sea urchin rice, 50-hour Amazonian beef short rib and even smoked macambo seed ice cream. Everything sings with flavour and the natural bright colours that come from Peru’s produce. There’s also a separate sushi counter and menu for everyday or business diners.
About the chef: Born in Lima, Tsumura was encouraged by his father to turn his passion for cooking into a profession and, after studying culinary arts in the US, he went to Japan to learn about his cultural and culinary heritage. He spent many months washing dishes before learning vital knife skills and eventually how to cook rice and make sushi. He took a job at the Sheraton on returning to Lima and, in 2009, opened Maido.
Other ventures: Tsumura has his fingers in many pies, including the casual Sushi Pop chain and Karai restaurant in Santiago. In 2018 he opened Ají restaurant in Macao, serving many of the Maido classics alongside flavoursome fish tiraditos and nigiri.