Meet the Chef of Azie Restaurant

Food writer Clara Park interviews Chef Takao Iinuma of Azie Restaurant.

Food writer Clara Park sat down with Chef Takao Iinuma of in Media and Villanova and learned a bit more about this talented and friendly Japanese born chef who has a penchant for Korean BBQ and making meat stocks.

Name: Takao Iinuma

Age: 39

Years in the Industry: 20

First Kitchen Job: Prep cook in a small Chinese restaurant in Tokyo.

Earliest Cooking Memory: I was 9 or 10, making Japanese egg omelets for myself for breakfast. My mother is a great home cook, I learned from her.

Favorite Thing to Cook: To make stocks from scratch, any [flavor]: fish, chicken, veal, lamb in the French, Japanese or Chinese method. If I have a good stock, it makes the next step in cooking so much easier/better.

Advice for Home Cooks: Don't cook large amounts at once. Cook in smaller batches, it allows you to keep the temperature in the pan high and prevents steaming. If you're doing stir-fry or sauteing things the amount of food in the pan makes a big difference.

Favorite Local Restaurant: Cafe in Media

Favorite Restaurant in the World: Kyu Bei sushi restaurant in Toyko, Japan

Guilty Pleasure (food or drink): Korean BBQ and beer

Last Meal on Earth: My mother is still in Japan. For my last meal, I would want her to cook a simple Japanese dinner for me and my family.

Biggest Kitchen Disaster: One time I was running a ramen shop in Japan and there were only two people in the kitchen (myself and another cook). Right before the lunch rush the other cook decided to no-call-no-show. I had to cook for 50 or 60 people on my own. It was crazy busy but I managed to do it.


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