Dining on a meal prepared by a Michelin-starred chef typically involves a special occasion and a steep bill. But now in Tokyo, you can order a 500 Yen (about $5/£3.80) meal made by chef Daisuke Nomura, owner of Sougo restaurant, delivered to your door by UberEATS.
Uber launched its food delivery service in Japan’s capital on Thursday with over 150 restaurants. Offerings range from Krispy Kreme donuts to a 34,000Y ($340/£262) bottle of wine.
Chef Nomura began his culinary career at his father’s restaurant, Daigo, where he was the head chef when the restaurant earned two Michelin stars. At Sougo, the master chef now serves meticulously prepared shojin ryori, or traditional Buddhist vegetarian cuisine, with a slightly modern twist. “We can expect the food delivered will be as good as what we serve in a restaurant,” chef Nomura said at a press conference for the launch. “We would like to provide to Japanese as well as a foreign audience. I would like to introduce our great culture to the world.”
UberEATS launches with a special promotion through October called the “One Coin Campaign” where users can choose from a selection of meals for 500 Yen — the largest Japanese currency in coin version. From Sougo, order the Shojin Gozen Japanese plate with six seasonal dishes, including items like green beans in a sesame miso sauce, tofu with shishito peppers, and vegetables over rice in a dashi broth, normally costing upwards of 2000 Yen; a multi-course dinner at Sougo can run 10,000 Yen.
Tokyo is the 34th city to launch UberEATS, with Japan the 8th country globally, and Masami Takahashi, President of Uber Japan, tells Lonely Planet what makes the service unique in his country. “My favorite word in Japanese is kodawari. It’s hard to translate, but it means anything from craftsmanship, attention to detail, the passion you put into it. You see this with chefs like Daisuke from Sougo. He’s so passionate. There’s meaning behind everything he does, and that’s what I love about Japanese culture. I’d like to get UberEATS in Tokyo to a level where we put the same amount of kodawari into every detail in our app, in our service, and everything we do.”