Born and raised in the Tochigi Prefecture of Japan, Shinji dreamt of becoming a Chef since he was old enough to grip a chopstick.
Countless days and evenings of his youth were spent in the kitchen paying careful attention to his Mother and Grandmother… not just learning skill, but how to understand food… to hear it, listen to it and see what each individual ingredient was calling out for to be able to be plated at its full potential.
Following completion of Junior High School, Shinji entered High School and was accepted into the cooking department. After three years of dedication, hard work, extra hours and devotion he was granted the rare ‘Japanese Cooking License.’
Shinji’s path was set. Coming from a successful Japanese business oriented family, convincing his parents he wanted to venture out on his own and become a Chef rather than joining the Company business was not as difficult as one would think. His parents could not deny his love and passion for food… they had no choice but to encourage him.
From here, Shinji walked his own path. His next mission was to understand how to present food, how to make it as aesthetically beautiful on a plate as the euphoric experience its lucky captor gets while consuming it. He decided to join the local Wedding Hall and take on a position in the Kitchen emphasizing presentation.
It was here that Shinji met the person that would change his life forever… his Mentor.
It was this special relationship that catapulted Shinji’s skill. He discovered that ‘a dish is Heart’. Food on a dish becomes alive once again. Each individual ingredient has grown… was cared for and loved, to be plucked, picked, captured or slaughtered from its home… at its prime… at the precise moment of perfection to be merged and infused with others to create a masterpiece deserving of its life.
Shinji realized that nothing else mattered. That from here on his life would be dedicated to the perfection of food so as to respect the sacrifice it has made to grace our plates and our palates.
He worked tirelessly… 15 hours a day, 450 hours per month. It was this dedication that earned him the knowledge of a dish, its splendor and depth.
Following ten years of such dedication, Shinji made the decision to expand his horizons and further educate him self in the study of the English language. He decided this was paramount for advancement in the food industry and would greatly aid him in his dream of opening his own restaurant someday.
After careful research and consideration, he chose Revelstoke… a small, safe and friendly Canadian mountain community! He enrolled at the Revelstoke English Language School and after more than 2 years of intense study, hard work and making integral community connections, Kawakubo sushi-sake-steak was underway!
“I want my customers to feel the passion of my cooking and have my plates act as a window to my heart… the heart has room for everyone, can share everything, is ever expanding and searching for knowledge.”
“it is heart… it is Kawakubo”