Decoding UK’s Love For Anything Japanese

In the last decade, we may have witnessed the boom of the Japanese cuisine as well as culture in Britain. What has started as an obsession with sushi by people from the UK turned out into something more as they started to discover more about the ‘land of the rising sun’. They have come to appreciate ramen as their favourite lunchtime meal and patronize exhibitions that are presented by Japanese designers who are invading London.

The reason why Japanese cuisine is so well known boils down to the theatre of the food preparation. When you eat something Japanese, you never get anything boring. There are many different flavours to welcome from the sweet taste of the miso, the always present umami and the salty flavour contributed by the tamari. Our taste buds are adjusting well with the different food textures that Japan has introduced to us. They have something chewy, soft and silky and many other textures that people in the UK only started to welcome after the introduction of the Japanese cuisine.

Another trend that was obviously influenced by the Japanese cuisine is the smaller serving sizes of food and seasonal food that can be found in the UK. There is a sushi chef in Japan that only uses seasonal ingredients such as octopus because the sweetness is different all throughout the year. The attention to detail given to the food they prepare only proves that every bite of their Japanese food should be savoured.

Japanese cuisine is not only a hype in London because of the fact that it is easier now to find Japanese ingredients in the city than before. With this, people can make their own versions of Japanese dishes in the comforts of their home.

This trend continues to spread internationally. Take for example Peru with Japanese food starting to flourish in the market while Rue Sainte-Anne is considered the ramen capital of the city of Paris. A Japanese community is also starting to flourish in Dusseldorf which impacts the dining of the locals as well as their perception of the Japanese food. Thailand is also jumping in the bandwagon as more and more locals are looking for Japanese fine cuisine in Bangkok. As the world is still slowly discovering Japan, we can only imagine what the future holds for this delectable cuisine.