T+L Culinary Journeys: Bronx-based culinary collective Ghetto Gastro recently got back from a research trip to Tokyo, Kyoto, Osaka, and beyond.
The members of Ghetto Gastro make a point of thinking outside the borough.
They draw on what they call the "postmodern sample culture" born from their corner of New York; where the city's first DJs once mixed a new world of music into being, they now chop up and rearrange global food traditions and social critiques into a boundary-pushing way of cooking and thinking. These days, you'll find them curating artist collaborations and site-specific dinners at home and around the world.
The core team — Jon Gray, Malcolm Livingston II, Pierre Serrao, and Lester Walker — recently took a gastronomic tour around Japan as research for their latest project: a knife brand called Ogun, named after the orisha (Yoruba deity) of metalwork. The team studied under master blacksmiths, adding the lessons of traditional Japanese craftsmanship to their growing list of influences.
Oh, and they ate, too — experiencing Japan’s enduringly rich food culture, from French-inspired fine dining to street foods like delicate kakigori and tempura fish sandwiches they can’t stop thinking about. Here's are some memories from their trip.