Published at 4th of January 2021 06:10:19 PM
To discuss the exemplary attitudes of those who participate in the cooking competition, they probably fell into two categories . One of them would say, ‘Try not to be too nervous, enjoy your day comfortably, and just stay in good shape so as to display your cooking skills!’ The other group would say, ‘Don’t try to rest for a moment, just keep focusing on cooking, and improve your skills and get inspired!’
If somebody asked Min-joon which of the two groups he belonged to, he would choose the second group without any hesitation . He was the type of person who wasn’t very used to spending a day in a leisurely manner because he was raised in South Korea, where they could not even imagine spending a day in a leisurely manner because a life of leisure often meant relaxation, which also implied indolence that was regarded as a sin .
And his mindset hadn’t changed much since he came to America . He settled in the large city of Los Angeles, not a remote place, so he spent busy days as he did in Korea . At some point, he could enjoy some free time during the day because Rose Island was open only in the evening, but he didn’t want to take a break even during that time . He felt like playing was like a waste of life .
But he couldn’t afford to be leisurely here now in this contest . Unlike Min-joon who not only gave up playing but also stayed aloof from playing as a rule, Kaya was still longing for a leisurely life, as always . As someone who had been working at the marketplace without a day off, she could not help but feel her break from the daily routine in Paris was so sweet .
Since they came to Paris, Min-joon and Kaya had been wandering around in the street every day, enjoying the French scenery and restaurants here and there . And that day was no exception for them . This time, Janet, Chloe, and other demi-chefs joined the two and entered a restaurant called ‘Paris Park’ . It was a restaurant that received Michelin Three Stars, where Enzo and his son Theo were working .
As soon as they entered, Theo, who saw them in the kitchen, smiled brightly and stepped outside . Enzo glanced at them but just focused on directing his kitchen staff again .
Theo opened his mouth with a laugh .
“Thank you for coming . I really wanted to serve you my food while you were staying in Paris since you’re from America, a faraway place from here . ”
“Thanks for your invitation . ”
“Come this way . We have reserved the best table for you . ”
Theo escorted them with a smile . In the meantime, they looked around the restaurant and couldn’t hide their exclamations . The restaurant retained the aura of the names of Europe and Paris . It was difficult for them to know whether it was in Baroque or Renaissance style, but the marble walls and uneven columns of the restaurant revealed the unique European sensibility . Besides, the metal chandelier hanging from the ceiling fitted the name ‘Paris’ Park’ perfectly .
“This restaurant is really pretty . I think this is the coolest one of all the places I’ve ever been to in Paris,” Chloe said without hiding her admiration .
Smiling at her, Theo said, “It’s even more honorable for a beautiful lady like you to say so . Oh, my name is Theo . May I have your name?”
“My name is Chloe . Chloe Jung . ”
“Yes, Chloe . Today I will serve you the best service and cuisine you can imagine . ”
She felt he was a bit cheesy, but at the same time, she realized again that she was in France .
So, she just smiled without being embarrassed .
This time, Anderson asked, “I know you’re working with your father . ”
“Yes . I have been working with him since I was a kid . It was my goal as a kid to improve my skills well enough to inherit my father’s restaurant . Of course, it seems that I still have a long way to go . ”
Having heard that, Anderson had mixed feelings about it . In his case, he participated in the Grand Chef to get out of his parents and settled in Rose Island at the end of the day . But Theo was trying his best to defend and carry on the tradition of his father’s restaurant . Anderson was bothered by that painful contrast .
Havier said with a smile, “Ah, don’t crack a joke . If you still have a long way to go with such a high level, how high is your father Enzo’s skills?”
“He’s got the best skills in the world . I believe so . If my father had been exposed to the public a little more, maybe he would have become the best chef in France, not just a famous chef . So, I think we can win this contest . ”
“We are going to win the competition . ”
“If your father is the best chef in France, my boyfriend is the best chef on earth . ”
Min-joon held Kaya’s hand, feeling his face was blushing .
But Theo made provocative remarks, “Then what about you, Kaya?”
Kaya replied confidently, “I’m the best in this universe!”
She was so confident as to make people around her embarrassed . Watching her quietly, Min-joon felt a bit embarrassed, but at the same time, relaxed because she was not that confident when Min-joon met her first .
Back then, she was no more than a young girl who didn’t believe in herself, who didn’t know her own worth, and who just pretended to be stronger than people who were better educated and grown . But Min-joon realized she changed completely . She knew how to laugh, and she didn’t get cold feet when she compared herself with others . All this made him happy .
“Kaya, you are living on this earth now . If you are the best not on earth but in the universe, are you actually an alien then?”
“Please don’t be so silly, Theo!”
Theo seemed to have been thinking of responding to her joke mischievously, but Kaya didn’t appreciate his joke . Theo looked embarrassed for a moment then opened his mouth in a slightly depressed voice .
“Well, before I serve you today, I will do a quick survey . Now, please check it, everyone . ”
Having said that, Theo handed out a simple card to all of them . It was a luxurious card with gold thread on the edge . And there were a number of question items written on the card, such as the intensity of seasoning, greasiness, the intensity of the scent, non-preferred ingredients, and the preference for cooking meat, etc . Basically, they were related to personal preferences for various factors .
Admiring Theo’s preparedness like this, Anderson said, “This must be pretty cumbersome, but it’s amazing to see you doing this . ”
The other chefs nodded as if they agreed . This was the difference between the general public and the chef when it came to cooking . The average people, even if they were gourmets, would usually admire his devotion as seen in this kind of survey .
From now on, everybody in the kitchen would take pains to take care of each guest’s preferences for taste while cooking the dishes . They would have to use different amounts of ingredients and adjust the intensity of the heat, which was almost like making one hundred dishes with one recipe .
In other words, the fact that Theo’s kitchen staff could handle hundreds of recipes at the same time was enough to command Min-joon and his colleagues’ respect .
Theo opened his mouth, at last .
“Well, it’s going to be a challenging task for us, but you guys can enjoy the best dishes that you can’t compare with any other dish . If you can enjoy it, it’s our duty to make such dishes . ”
“Well, it’s not just challenging, but you can’t handle this kind of complicated recipe that reflects our tastes . For example, one or two allergic customers here will make your recipes messed up . How can you satisfy each one’s taste here?”
“When you get used to it, it’s not that hard . It’s always difficult when you try for the first time,” Theo replied with a smile .
Min-joon quietly checked his own taste . He wished it didn’t taste irritating . He liked an intense scent, but it should not be strong enough to dull the taste . On the assumption that they ripen the beef steak well, he liked medium the best, but medium well was alright if it was served with sweet sauce . As far as sauce was concerned, he preferred one in solid-state rather than in liquid because it tasted better .
‘This is the first time I sort out my taste systematically like this . ’
Then he looked at Kaya’s card . He giggled for a moment because he noticed some spelling errors . He felt she was cute, but at the same time, he felt sorry . He thought of teaching her some spelling later . When he was thinking of that . Theo approached him and asked, “Are you done?”
“Oh, yes, here it is . ” “Hummm… it’s surprising that you prefer a bland taste . ”
“Since you must have a sharp taste, I thought that you could feel and enjoy strongly seasoned dishes more . That’s the case with most gourmets . Since they are used to salty food, they naturally like the kind of dishes with strong seasoning . I thought you were one of them . ”
“Well, that might be true in western countries . But in Asian countries, especially in my country, that’s not true . When they can tell the difference between salty and savory taste in something bland, they can be called a gourmet . And I think I fall into such group . ”
“If you think so, you can count on me . Today, we’re going to bring you the dish that satisfies your taste the most . ”
“Alright . I’m looking forward to it . ” Min-joon nodded at him with a smile .
Theo took all the cards from them, and Kaya soon turned to Min-joon .
“I don’t like this restaurant,” she said .
He could not help but laugh at her response .
Smiling at her, Chloe responded, “Well, I like this place . Although there are many high-end restaurants these days, it’s hard to find a place where they care about the customer’s preferences like this . ”
“What’s the big deal? As long as the dish is delicious, your preferences don’t matter . ”
“What if that delicious dish suits your taste, you might think differently . ”
“Oh, you’re right . I agree . ”
“Then, just look forward to what he’s going to cook . You won’t lose anything even if you give him the benefit of the doubt . ”
Kaya smiled when Chloe spoke cheerfully . It was rather unusual that Kaya gently stopped being stubborn and listened to her like now . Watching her interacting with Chloe quietly, Havier was also surprised, feeling deep down there was another person like Chloe who could make Kaya give in, for he thought only Min-joon could calm down her stubbornness .
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