Published at 16th of December 2020 05:33:24 PM
Man-gil continued, “For the past several decades I’ve been trying to put a little more delicious dishes on the table without worrying about flavor combination . That’s not going to change overnight . ”
Min-joon could understand what he said . But at the same time, he didn’t want to understand it . It was just sad to realize that as someone who could create such a beautiful and perfect dish, he could not properly develop the basics such as food matching . He could make food more delicious than anyone else, but he didn’t know how to feed them deliciously .
“I’m afraid I can’t help you achieve your dream of completing Korean food . ”
“Why do you think so?”
“If I have to look for a reason, there are so many . As I told you, I’m busy, and I’m not as talented in cooking as you think . And above all, you can’t complete Korean food . ”
Man-gil had no choice but to harden his face at Min-joon’s statement that he could not complete Korean food . He could not ignore it lightly because the rest of his life and his aspirations depended on it . No matter who he was, including Min-joon, they were not supposed to mention before Man-gil that it was impossible for him to realize his dream .
Man-gil asked in a heavy voice, “Why do you think I can’t complete Korean food?”
“Because food is relative . ”
“I know that . But, relative or not, there should be the most fundamental orthodox way of cooking Korean food . And I want to complete Korean food in that orthodox way . ”
“Of course I understood exactly what you mean . I don’t want to say that your method is worthless . I don’t want to say that you are not competent . You’re by far the best Korean chef I’ve ever seen in my life . You make great dishes . ”
Min-joon talked long, but Man-gil did not try to cut him off in the middle recklessly . If he turned away from him because Min-joon criticized him, he would be stuck in the same place forever . But that didn’t mean that Man-gil was not anxious and restless .
He asked in a frustrated voice, “Then why do you think so? Can you tell me?”
“Because there is no end to cooking . Cooking is like a popular song . If you keep hearing it because it’s popular, you will soon be sick and tired of it . So, there can be no perfect dish .
Of course, you don’t have to take my words as the truth . This is what a 24-year-old young and audacious chef is babbling about . ”
“What I want to do is not to end the change in Korean food, but to present an exemplary reply…”
Man-gil remained silent while blurring . Then he was lost in thought . Then he was about to open his mouth again when he hesitated . He then continued his silence . He wasn’t so stupid that he couldn’t even notice that there wasn’t a big difference in the model answer and the perfection of Korean food . While agonizing, he covered his eyes with his hands then opened his mouth .
“Ah, yes . I think I heard that a lot somewhere . Now that you mention it again, I think what it means more clearly . ”
What Min-joon had just said was probably not wrong . Actually, what he said right now was what Jung-soo Lee emphasized several times when he told Min-joon about his Master Man-gil .
But maybe Jung-soo could not have said the same thing to Man-gil .
Man-gil continued, “One thing suddenly comes to my mind . In fact, I may have already known this reality for a long time . Oh, I don’t have to talk about the past . Even though I realized it right now, I still can’t let go of my greed . I can’t shake off my wishes that I want to be the central pillar of the Korean food circles here . I want to be their roots!”
His voice was becoming harsher, and it showed how tormented he was at the end of his remarks . But Min-joon just looked at him without saying anything . Although he didn’t see Man-gil long, he discovered that his greed and ambition were very unusual .
But Min-joon could sympathize with his wild ambition . It was the kind of ambition that any man must have . An ambition that he didn’t want to remain one of the common chefs in the world . An ambition that he wanted to leave his name in history and walk so far that no one on the same path could follow . Anybody would have such a dream and ambition like Man-gil .
“Am I wrong?” Man-gil asked .
But Min-joon couldn’t easily reply . Man-gil understood his silence and waited . When Man-gil was looking at him again seriously, Min-joon opened his mouth finally .
“When I look at you, I think of my teacher—Chef Rachel Rose . ”
“Oh, I see . ”
“My teacher is as greedy as you are . Even though they say she is the best chef in America, she is still not satisfied with such praise . ”
“If she isn’t satisfied with being regarded as the best chef in America, does she want to be regarded as the world’s best chef?”
“In fact, she wants more than that . She just wants to be the best in human affairs . ”
Man-gil seemed dumbfounded at his remarks . Man-gil knew his aspirations were big, but Rachel’s dreams were so different in scale that he felt his dreams were so small .
He thought to himself, ‘She is too greedy,’ then he suddenly smiled . Come to think of it, his dreams were also too grand in the eyes of others .
“I like you in that respect . I think it’s really cool that you have such an unusual dream, and you try to achieve something that others don’t even think about . But…”
Min-joon blurred a bit then continued, “I know it’s very hard for you sometimes . Sometimes, you look like a great mountain, but sometimes, I feel you might collapse anytime soon . I think it’s because you’re too greedy . ”
“I know . Greed sometimes lifts the spirit of people, but sometimes, it shakes them . ”
“I don’t think my immature and inexperienced observation can affect your path . ”
“Do you really think so?”
Man-gil burst into laughter . Hearing it, he realized that Min-joon was twenty-four years old .
Of course, just because he was older than Min-joon didn’t mean he was more mature than Min-joon, but Man-gil thought that what Min-joon said was very mature and wise for a young man at that age . The reason Man-gil listened to him was not because he was a famous or smart genius chef, but it was because what he said was correct .
“I’m very envious of Chef Rachel who has you as her student . ”
“You also have good students here . . ”
Man-gil stopped at that moment . Then he said with a gentle smile, “Yes, I do . ”
“Anyway, this is my opinion, sir . You are too ambitious, and I’m not that qualified to advise you . ”
“I see . ”
“But, as for the dishes on the table, I think I can give you my own opinion from a customer’s standpoint . ”
Man-gil looked at him while Min-joon smiled at him .
Min-joon said, “I have to go back to America soon, but if you come up with any good ideas about food matching, please feel free to tell me . I’ll give you feedback in one way or another . I can promise you that . ”
“I have never made any promise that I don’t intend to keep . ”
“Then, let me…”
“Oh, not now…”
Min-joon picked up his smartphone . It was already 10 pm .
“Because it’s time to go home . ”
“Well, after all is said and done, we have come to have good networking in Korea . ”
When they got home, Kaya sat on the couch and opened her mouth in a calm voice .
Min-joon smiled and nodded .
“I hope we can continue to maintain our good relationship . ”
“Unless the other party is a whacko, anybody who gets connected to you will benefit from you a lot . ”
“Hope so,” he said then typed something on the laptop .
She glanced up and opened her mouth .
“Are you posting another recipe?”
“Nope . I’m just checking their comments . ”
“You know they broadcast the episode about our post-Grand Chef activities . I’m checking out the viewers’ feedback here and there . ”
“Oh, come to think of it, I couldn’t even take care of that because I came here . ”
As if she remembered it, she pushed his head into his chest then began to read all the comments . Normally, there was supposed to be some bad comments no matter how good the program was, but there was almost nothing this time .
Kaya muttered as if she felt strange about it .
“Since I announced that I was dating you, I think the number of bad comments decreased . ”
“You know they have a good impression of me, so I think they also have a good perception of you . ”
“If anyone hears that, they might think I had a very bad perception . ”
He did not answer . But she was looking at him sharply as if she didn’t like his reply .
At that moment, he changed his expression for some reason .
She complained, looking at him, “Why are you making a straight face? What’s wrong?”
“Oh, I noticed a very strange comment . ”
“Look at this . ”
She raised her head when he pointed at the comment . Then she slowly began to read it .
“What the heck is this? Is it real fire?”
“I don’t know . I haven’t received any text messages about it . Maybe it’s bullshit . ”
“How come fire broke out at Rose Island all of a sudden? It doesn’t make sense . ”
“Well, I was worried a bit because there were lots of kids who were on drugs at night near our restaurant… But I don’t think fire broke out there . ”
Min-joon laughed awkwardly as if he tried to shake off the anxiety . Kaya couldn’t say anything, so she just patted him on the shoulder . He looked at the smartphone with an anxious expression .
Since it was very early in the morning in Los Angeles, he would wake up his staff and Rachel Rose if he called them . However, be it fortunate or unfortunate, he didn’t have to call them .
A video was uploaded . He clearly saw a building on fire at dawn when the smoke and fog settled down . It was Rose Island .