Masaharu Morimoto is one of the biggest names in the food industry. While it would be right to simply call him that, it would not scratch the surface of the success and influence he has achieved in the culinary industry as a whole. He is widely known to the general public for his appearances on the acclaimed television shows Iron Chef and Iron Chef America, where he demonstrates his world-famous cooking skills to a live audience on a ticking clock. The chef is loved for his unique fusion cuisine, which combines both Japanese and Western cooking styles to create a new, unforgettable and magical cuisine that is entirely his own.
For Morimoto, cooking is entertainment, and everything has to be perfect – from the flavors to the spice blends, the ingredients, the preparation of the meal, the color combination, and the presentation. The Japanese chef and his facilities have earned praise from New York Magazine, Conde Nast Traveler, Zagat, Travel + Leisure, Michelin Guide, and many others. He received a nomination for the James Beard Award for Specials and for outstanding restaurant design in 2007 and 2008.
The chef’s first cookbook, Morimoto: The New Art of Japanese Cooking, was published in 2007 and won a number of awards, including awards from the International Association of Culinary Professionals. The success of this book helped to consolidate his position as a pioneer of modern Japanese cuisine. Despite the many achievements he has achieved, Morito has no intention of giving up his apron or knives in the near future and he is still actively exploring the world of cooking and expanding his empire.
How Did Masaharu Morimoto Become Famous?
Morimoto was born on May 26, 1955, in Hiroshima, Japan, and did not exactly have the easiest life. His father was a violent and angry man who often took his frustration out on his family. When he was 10 years old, his family had lived in more than a dozen homes because his parents’ arguments often upset the landlords and led to their eviction.
Long before he dreamed of becoming a celebrated sushi chef, Morimoto wanted to become a professional baseball player and he had the talent to support this. However, before he became a professional, he suffered a shoulder injury that brought his career to a fateful end, so he turned to the world of cooking.
Morimoto then trained in sushi and traditional Kakashi cuisine. Eight years later, in 1980, he opened his own restaurant in Hiroshima, Japan.
In 1985 Morimoto decided to sell his restaurant and move to the United States, where he could learn more about Western cooking styles. He settled in New York City and slowly built a name for himself by working in prestigious restaurants throughout Manhattan, including the Sony Club, where he was a chef, and the exclusive, award-winning Japanese restaurant Nobu, where he was a chef. Around this time, he began performing with Iron Chef, dividing his time between Japan and the States.
Morimoto left Nobu in 1999 to work with Starr Restaurants and opened his own independent restaurant in Philadelphia in 2001. He then founded the second Morimoto restaurant in Chelsea, New York City. Since then, he has opened over a dozen more restaurants around the world.
What Is His Net Worth?
The Japanese-born chef is now considered one of America’s most successful chefs. He has opened mega restaurants and flagship restaurants all over the world. Currently, Morimoto has 16 restaurants in his portfolio, located in places like Honolulu, Napa Valley in California, Boca Raton in Florida, Hawaii, Mumbai, New Delhi, and Tokyo. Recent openings include Morimoto Las Vegas at the MGM Grand, Morimoto Asia at Disney Springs, and Momosan Ramen & Sake on Lexington Ave. in New York City.
Morimoto also has its hands in the beverage industry. He has his own range of sake, beer, and Cabernet Sauvignon. His various shops have helped Morimoto to impressive net worth. Iron Chef’s net worth is estimated at $18 million in 2019.
Does Masaharu Morimoto Have a Wife?
Masaharu Morimoto is a happily married man. He tied the knot with Keiko Morimoto in 1978 and they have been together ever since. According to the acclaimed chef, his wife is also an excellent cook. However, it is not clear whether she is also in the professional culinary business, or what she does for a living otherwise. From all indications, Morimoto is as excellent at being a husband as he is at cooking for people.