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Desperately Seeking Chen Kenichi =) Akasaka or Ikebukuro Shisen Hanten branch?

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Hi Chowhounders

I am currently in Japan and this forum has been really helpful with food recs!

Please help if you know which branch of Shisen Hanten i might see Chen Kenichi?

I have been researching and most articles point to Akasaka although these two links show him at Ikebukuro...

http://derek_ironchefstour.tripod.com/Chinese/index.html

http://archive.metropolis.co.jp/tokyo...

Thankyou in advance for any insight you might have!

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  1. This may not be any help, but my crazy suggestion is to ask them. I've only been to Shisen Hanten once -I went to the Akasaka branch for dinner about six years ago. The service was absolutely amazing. When the manager found out we were visiting from the US to tour restaurants in Japan he started calling places in Yokohama to arrange for us to have dinner at other Chinese restaurants, and he even gave me his personal cell phone number. We talked to him for a half an hour after we finished our dinner. I'm not saying that you will be able to find that specific person, but if the level of service is still the same I'm sure they'd be very happy to steer you toward Chef Kenichi if he's still coming into the restaurants. I assure you there are people who are asking to meet him all the time and many of them probably aren't even that nice about it. What's the worst thing that can happen? At the very least, if you go for dinner and he isn't there, ask a manager about him.

    1. I go to the Roppongi branch quite frequently, and I've never seen him there. So you can skip that one.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Uncle Yabai

        I ended up at the Akasaka restaurant on friday as the webpages referring to Ikebukuro were quite old.

        la2tokyo - LOL thankyou for the crazy suggestion. Of course I asked while dining as only a tourist would and unfortunately they said Chen wasn't there but if he ever is its usually at dinner. I went for the lunch special menu =)

        A photo next to the signed poster of Chen at ramen stadium in odaiba will have to suffice!

      2. Old thread but for anyone who might be looking for the same info about Chen, I ended up meeting him at Akasaka Shisen Hanten in Nov 2011. He even let me watch him cook for a bit! We were there for dinner, and we did have some inside info that he would be there.

        http://www.vodkitchen.com/2011/12/19/...

         
        2 Replies
        1. re: tzakiel

          I actually ended up meeting him in Taipei, when he was cooking at The Regent and I had a chance to try the mabodofu made by the master's hand. Definitely top-shelf.

          1. re: tzakiel

            Sorry, meant to say Sept 2011

          2. Its been awhile (2007) but he prepared his famous ma pa tofu for our family in Ikebukuro tableside. It helped that we had one of the private rooms. Why dont you call and request a "chefs table?"