Published at 29th of November 2020 02:00:08 PM
Instead of replying, Min-joon sipped a bit of Mojito . It didn’t mean he refused to reply . He was not yet ready to interpret Raphael’s question .
The Mojito tasted so sweet that he felt like his tongue was numb . Was it because of the sugar or the sour taste that highlighted the Mojito, or was it because he was captivated by the word ‘sous chef’? Min-joon narrowed his eyes, and Raphael looked at Havier . Although he drank several glasses of beer, Havier wasn’t drunk yet, nor did he slur his words .
“That’s a good goal,” said Havier .
“But you don’t seem to be interested . Any reason?”
“Well, that’s not true . I’m interested . How can’t I be? Where can you find anybody who doesn’t have any ambition for success?”
“But you look sullen, not excited . Why is that?”
“Whew! I don’t know . To be honest, I’m not sure . I don’t want to bite more than I can chew . I’m not confident that I can take this sous chef job . Even now, I’m struggling to earn my keep as a demi chef . So, it’s certainly beyond my station to dream about your position as sous chef . ”
Havier wasn’t confident at all . Min-joon slowly looked at Havier . He didn’t say anything quickly . He knew any thoughtless attempt to comfort Havier might make him feel more hurt, whose lesson he had already learned well from Anderson .
Raphael was not the type of man who inspired courage into his colleagues forcibly . He wasn’t considerate enough to take care of others, but at the same time, he didn’t reach out to anyone who wasn’t floundering in the water .
“If you think that way, I can’t help it . Min-joon, what do you think? Do you also feel you don’t deserve the sous chef position?”
“Well, it might be a tough job for me if I take it over now, but if I take it over in the future, I may . When are you planning to quit?”
“I don’t know yet . I’m just thinking I have to quit within this year . ”
“Did you get everything you wanted?”
“I wouldn’t say I got everything, but if you want to get all of it, you might not get it until you get old and dead because Rachel will have a lot more as I get more from her . It’s time I should get it by myself . If I get stuck in one place too long…”
Raphael’s eyes turned to his glass with only ice left . He put a large piece of ice in his mouth and chewed it off . He opened his mouth for a moment as if his teeth were sensitive then let out a sigh .
Min-joon didn’t push Raphael . Before he replied, Janet and Anderson returned . Janet opened her mouth cheerfully as if she became a bit sober after getting some fresh air .
“I’m sorry a little while ago . I was a little drunk . ”
“You can be drunk in a bar like this . No problem . ”
“What did you tell them?”
“Min-joon, tell them what I told you guys . I’m sleepy, so I can’t even open my mouth . ”
Having said that, he stooped over the table .
Looking at Janet and Anderson, Min-joon asked, “You guys want to listen?”
“Is it important or not?”
“If it’s important, repeat what he said . ”
“What is it? Just say it, man . ”
“Chef Raphael says he is going to quit this year . Well, is it more correct for me to say he wants to quit?”
“Why is that important? Why does it matter to us if he quits?”
Raphael shrugged momentarily at Janet’s cold voice .
Looking askance at him, Anderson muttered in a low voice, “It really does . ”
“Well, somebody has to take over his position if he quits, right?”
“It doesn’t matter whoever comes to take it over . ”
“It looks like you get dumb when you’re drunk . You might have noticed why I said this if you’re sober . ”
When Anderson pointed out like that, she rolled her eyes with an effort .
Then she slowly opened her mouth .
“So, which branch did you like most?”
“I would say Chef Dave’s branch . ”
Min-joon answered Rachel’s question without any hesitation . She looked back at other demi chefs . Most of them nodded as if they agreed with him .
Rachel said with a light smile, “Dave is definitely one of those chefs who have a good reputation . And the New York branch is also doing great with Dave . ”
“What kind of students were they?”Janet asked .
Rachel looked at her as if her question was rather unexpected . Janet was an outspoken woman, but she wasn’t very curious about anything other than cooking .
Rachel replied with a smile, “Well, you might think it a bit stale if I say they are good students .
Dave was a calm and bright guy . And I don’t want to talk much about June you are seeing today . Maybe you will find out what kind of student June was if you just go and try her food today . ”
They were still not sure what Rachel was talking about .
A little later, after climbing to the top floor of the 30-story building, Min-joon swallowed before he knew it .
‘What the heck… Is this heaven here?’
The interior was so impressive that Min-joon muttered unwittingly . On the clean white wall, trees made of mirror sculptures were lit up and shining as if they were the light itself, and beautiful lanterns were hung on the ceiling of the aisle, which seemed to be worth more than a statue .
“It’s been a while, Chef Rachel . ”
“Ah, June . ”
Rachel held out her hand with a smile . Min-joon looked at the woman called June . He seemed to have seen her before Rose Island was reopened, but he had no chance to talk with her formally . She quietly enjoyed Rachel’s dishes and exchanged short greetings . That was it .
“Please come this way . Let me escort you to your seat . ”
Tables were very neatly arranged, compared with the corridor . There were a round table and a slightly curved sofa that surrounded it from both sides and marble partitions built over the sofa . It was such a luxurious arrangement that customers would surely feel like they would be treated nicely just by sitting at a table like this .
‘I don’t think I’ve seen any other restaurant that’s as luxurious as this place . ’
The main branch of Rose Island was definitely one of the best places in the world that boasted of delicious food, but it wasn’t the most expensive or extravagant place in the world . Obviously, there were many expensive restaurants that put more emphasis on this external stuff than the food itself .
‘But Rachel said this is a restaurant comparable to Dave’s branch . ’
It was not just about the luxurious interior alone because this place had three Michelin stars . Of course, Min-joon thought that any restaurant with such a perfect interior would normally get three stars, but even so, they would serve delicious dishes befitting the three stars .
This time, the demi-chefs, trainees and cooks sat down with Rachel . They ordered the same menu at the chef’s recommendation .
Watching June heading to the kitchen, Havier muttered in a small voice, “I felt Chef June was a bit scary when I saw her last time, just like the old Janet . ”
“Why are you talking about the old me? You think I’m a pushover now?” Janet demanded .
“Well, we have gotten a little closer these days . No?” Havier asked diffidently .
After sipping the lemon and ice-floating sparkling water with a luxurious straw, she turned to Havier with her hand on her chin . “I don’t want to answer such a sly question . ”
“Oh, how about this question . ”
This time, Raphael cut in .
He asked mischievously, “Are you dating Anderson?”
As soon as he heard that, Anderson, who was drinking water at the moment, glared at Raphael while coughing as if he choked . Min-joon was also embarrassed .
He asked in a surprised voice, “Raphael . What are you talking about? Are they dating? From when?”
“No, I’m asking because I don’t know . They look so close . The two irritable guys! I saw him supporting her to get out for fresh air because she was drunk . ”
“We’re just friends . That’s all . Don’t suspect our relationship,” Janet said coldly .
When Raphael was not persuaded, Janet continued, touching her belly, with her arms folded .
“I have no intention of dating . I will never do it again . ”
“Well, I have nothing more to say if that’s your position . ”
The atmosphere became chilly for a moment . Fortunately, amuse-bouches were served at that moment . Servers approached and placed plates on their table at the same time .
Min-joon said in admiration, “I think the best thing about this restaurant is the light . ”
“You bet,” said Raphael with a smile .
Min-joon nodded and said, “Well, no matter how great a restaurant I visit, I always feel like I don’t enjoy the food fully if the lights are not good enough . It’s only natural I can’t feel the taste properly because I can’t see what it looks like with good lights . ”
“In that sense, I think this New York branch is a great place where they take care of lights better than anywhere else . Just look at this right now!”
Raphael pointed to the bottom of a plate . A soft light installed just below the plate was illuminating under the plate .
Anderson nodded at that and said, “What is certain is that it will cost a lot of money to install all this stuff . ”
“But they are operating this restaurant in New York . Anyway, compared to the rent or labor costs, the money spent here is not that high . ”
“I guess so . It’s New York anyway . Well, it really depends on the region . ”
“Yeah, it’s not just the skills of the chef that determines the food . The taste varies depending on the choice of location, the right lighting, and even what body temperature a person has . It tastes better when you eat cold food when it’s hot, or hot food when it’s cold . We all know that, right?”
While everyone was nodding, Min-joon looked at the top of the spoon . The dish on the spoon had one color . It’s red . The server said it was a pomegranate pudding . He looked into the inside of the pudding carefully, namely the bottom of the pudding .
“Sous vide tuna…”
As if he was looking at a pretty girl, he enjoyed looking at the pudding for a moment before trying it . Since the pudding was covered only on the top, he could immediately taste tuna .
His eyes glared . He looked at his empty spoon then looked at others’ spoons . They flinched for a moment then began to look at each other .
“What a great taste!” Min-joon said in a sincere voice .
Even before he chewed it fully, the tuna and pudding melted in his mouth .
Relishing in the aftertaste, he said, “The head chef must be paranoid . ”
Of course, he meant well . That was the way he expressed admiration . Others also understood why he said that .
Janet muttered, enjoying the lingering taste of the pudding, “It seems that the chef adjusted only the ripening period of the pomegranate without putting any additional additives . ”
“I think so . The chef used the sweet and sour taste of the pomegranate itself only, so she didn’t have to use any other sauce to make this Sous vide tuna . ”