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20 August 2011 @ 03:30 pm
King of the Iron Chefs [#041]  
Posting via Semagic, will be tagging soon...

Title: King of the Iron Chefs [#041
Fandom: Iron Chef (Japan), general
Characters: Hiroyuki Sakai (IC French II), brief mentions of others
Prompt: 041. This is heaven to no one but me, and I'll defend it as long as I can be
Word Count: 580
Rating: G (regardless of a few minor profanities)
Summary: Sakai reflects after being named King of the Iron Chefs.
Author's Notes: Sakai was named the King of Iron Chefs, then beat Alain Passard in a special battle to determine the best chef in the world. I own nothing.

“Sakai Hiroyuki!”

When I was named the winner of that final battle, I nearly cried. Wait, scratch that… I think I did cry. Either way, I was the winner and I was named the best chef in the world. To be named the winner of the final regular battle in the history of Kitchen Stadium was rewarding, to say the least. But to be the last official regular battle winner? It felt even more special. It was relieving to finish that battle on what I thought was a high note, and then the judges had to make things much more joyous for myself.

Or maybe it was because Alain Passard, my opponent, used three different whole chickens for his dishes. That was a drastic move on his part, but it almost hurt his chances.

Either way, I was standing on that dais. I had that trophy clutched firmly in my hands. And I was getting the praise from so many of the former challengers who watched on in the stands. It was a moment that I’ll never forget.

It wasn’t until I was back in the comfort of privacy, along with my fellow Iron Chefs in arms that I heard that I had won with three judges’ votes to Passard’s two supporters. It was truly that close, and wasn’t sure if I was going to win until I heard Kaga-san call out my name.

I can remember starting out my career as an Iron Chef in 1994. Five years of my life were dedicated to cooking on national television (and later, around the world), and when I take a moment to look back on it, I regret nothing. I don’t regret meeting new people, making new friends, or even battling my ass off in the kitchen for the pride of French cuisine. It was a hard road to get through, but it was sure worth it.

I can tell you that even though I was the king of seafood, there were some ingredients that really screwed me over when I used them. Octopus was awful. I saw that and I think I wanted to run away. I did my best, but I think my best in that battle was my worst. And don’t get me started in Homard Lobster… I think I had four battles using that, and the only time I won was when I was against Chen-san in the finals of the King of Iron Chefs tournament.

To be honest with you, there were so many other memories about my career as an Iron Chef, that I don’t think I’d be able to name without forgetting them. The 2000th plate special when I was teamed with Ishinabe-san, against Chen-san and his team of Chinese chefs… Or how about the trip to Brissac Castle in France and the 24-Hour battle? I think I got little to no sleep during my search for ingredients. And the French judges were all over my ass. It wasn’t funny then, and I don’t think it’s funny now.

Either way, they were memories that I’ll keep for the rest of my life. And now, they include winning the King of Iron Chefs tournament and winning the battle against Passard to become the best chef in the world. Even if I don’t end up being a household name in Japan, I’m still quite glad to have been on the show, to help in giving French cuisine a new name.

Bring on the cheers and applause.