Living in an international city Washingtonians are generally no strangers to Japanese cuisine. However, the 2013 arrival of Daikaya in the District’s Chinatown neighborhood exposed many diners to ramen for the first time — and a world beyond sushi and bento boxes.
Now four years later, Daikaya has been joined by its upstairs Japanese tavern izakaya; Bantam King, also in Chinatown and serving Japanese chicken ramen; and Haikan, in the Shaw neighborhood and offering Sapporo-style ramen along with a creative selection of Japanese small bites. Together they form the Daikaya Group.
For its efforts and contributions in bringing awareness to and further branding of Japanese cuisine through regular use or promotion of Japanese ingredients with passion, integrity and creativity, the Daikaya Group has received The Taste of Japan Honorary Award 2017.
The award was presented to Daikaya Group’s partners Daisuke Utagawa, Yama Jewayni, and Chef Katsuya Fukushima at a private reception hosted by the Embassy of Japan and attended by a gathering of chefs, restaurateurs, culinary writers and provocateurs, and industry professionals from the D.C. metropolitan area and beyond.
Taste of Japan is part of a new, multi-city, international program developed and supported by Japan’s Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries.
The program aims to showcase and celebrate the rich legacies and diversity that is found in both traditional and modern Japanese cuisine and its dietary culture, and also to promote new innovative ways to incorporate genuine Japanese food products and ingredients to Western culinary and food industry professional circles.
In 2016, Taste of Japan honored chefs Nobu Yamazaki, Chef and Owner of Sushi Taro and Eric Ziebold, Chef and Owner of Kinship and Métier.