Grand Maison Tokyo (2019) poster
8.3
Your Rating: 0/10
Ratings: 8.3/10 from 663 users
# of Watchers: 1,608
Reviews: 7 users
Ranked #1148
Popularity #6026
Watchers 663

A talented Japanese chef in French cuisine has devoted his life to food. He opened his own restaurant in Paris and earned two Michelin stars. Hailed as a superstar chef, his confidence has turned into conceit. But no matter how he tries, three Michelin stars are beyond his reach. He feels pressured and up against a wall. At this moment, a serious incident occurs at the restaurant and he ends up losing both the place and his team. While he is feeling at his lowest, he happens to meet a female chef and makes the decision to start over again as a chef. He makes it his goal to create the world’s greatest three Michelin star restaurant and tries to put together the best staff. However, he is spurned by his former colleagues and has problems even though he has found new talent. But he does not give up. He shove unreasonable demands at other people and aims higher himself. The attitudes of the people around him gradually begin to change as they watch him. (Source: TBS, jdramas.wordpress.com) Edit Translation

  • English
  • 中文(简体)
  • Ελληνικά
  • Deutsch
  • Country: Japan
  • Type: Drama
  • Episodes: 11
  • Aired: Oct 20, 2019 - Dec 29, 2019
  • Aired On: Sunday
  • Original Network: TBS
  • Duration: 54 min.
  • Score: 8.3 (scored by 663 users)
  • Ranked: #1148
  • Popularity: #6026
  • Content Rating: 13+ - Teens 13 or older

Cast & Credits

Photos

Grand Maison Tokyo (2019) photo
Grand Maison Tokyo (2019) photo
Grand Maison Tokyo (2019) photo
Grand Maison Tokyo (2019) photo
Grand Maison Tokyo (2019) photo
Grand Maison Tokyo (2019) photo

Reviews

Completed
ginzarhapsody
17 people found this review helpful
Dec 30, 2019
11 of 11 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 9.0
Story 8.5
Acting/Cast 9.0
Music 9.0
Rewatch Value 9.0
Just as its title implies, this drama is truly grand - in scale, in its characters, and in its spirit. That is probably what I loved most about "Grand Maison Tokyo" is that I could get lost in the stories of its characters and truly believe them, despite not knowing ANYTHING about the art of French cuisine. Even with a star-studded cast, every character manages to shine and get their moment, while also being an important and cohesive part of the overall drama plot. And honestly, the music also takes you there - the OST and Yamashita Tatsuro's "Recipe" has you feeling those intense moments and those softer, kinder moments so deeply. While the plot does follow the usual ebbs and flows of Japanese dramas, the tight storytelling and character development still managed to be nuanced and surprise me at times. Overall, a highly recommended drama, especially if you enjoy food and Kimura Takuya's acting!

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Completed
WandereR
9 people found this review helpful
Feb 7, 2022
11 of 11 episodes seen
Completed 5
Overall 10
Story 10
Acting/Cast 10
Music 9.5
Rewatch Value 9.5

Exceptional cuisine that is worth a special journey

C’est magnifique! Le Grande Maison Tokyo IMHO is indeed grand and fully deserving of 3 Michelin stars for the wonderful French cuisine featured and also a 10/10 rating for the entire production served.

Obana Natsuki is a French cuisine master chef who had always been obsessed with attaining the holy grail of his craft - the 3 stars awarded by the prestigious Michelin Guide. Unfortunately his quest for the ultimate crowning glory is bitterly cut short due to a disastrous diplomatic incident that not only upends his promising career as a celebrated chef de cuisine but also reduces him to a vilified persona non grata of both France and Japan. Fast forward 3 years later, he crosses paths with the vibrant Hayami Rinko, a talented French cuisine chef herself, who rekindles his passion for cooking and reignites his hopes of achieving the ultimate Michelin guide rating once more.

Grand Maison Tokyo is a TBS production that is directed by established directors Ayuko Tsukahara (Saiai, MIU 404), Daisuke Yamamuro (Tenno no Ryoriban, Ouroboros, Jin 1 & 2), and Takahiro Aoyama (Tengoku to Jigoku: Psychona Futari). Based on the original screenplay by one of my favourite Japanese screenwriters, Tsutomu Kuroiwa (Tokyo MER: Hashiru Kinkyuukyuumeishitsu, Unsung Cinderella: Byoin Yakuzaishi no Shohosen) with music score composed by Hideakira Kimura and the theme song RECIPE performed by Tatsuro Yamashita.

A collaboration with the international fashion magazine, Marie Claire, in which the fictional “Marie Claire dining” segment is mentioned throughout. Principal photography took place primarily in Tokyo and Paris. The 3-star restaurant L'ambroisie in Paris and the Japanese French cuisine restaurant, Quintessence (depicted as Gaku in the drama) are featured extensively. Incidentally the Japanese restaurant was awarded the prestigious 3-star rating upon completion of the drama’s airing in 2020. The dishes served by Grand Maison Tokyo were prepared by the 2-star INUA restaurant based in Tokyo, while the supervision for dessert preparation is provided by Hotel Intercontinental Tokyo Bay, which was also used as a filming location for the buffet restaurant in the drama.

The drama won 5 awards at the 103rd Television Drama Academy Awards, namely for Best Picture, Best Actor (Takuya Kimura), Best Supporting Actor (Yuta Tamamori), Best Drama Song (Tatsuro Yamashita, RECIPE), and Best Director.

What I Loved

Everything, really. I was hooked from beginning till the end. This drama has the perfect blend of all the right ingredients to produce an outstanding production with more than sufficient action, thrills, suspense and poignant moments which I have thoroughly enjoyed every minute of.

The premise of the drama is straightforward but the storytelling navigates an intriguing trajectory teeming with layers of sub-plots as well as twists and turns that seemingly never runs out of steam or ideas on how to move the story forward. And moving forward it does at nearly the speed of light with so much agency and urgency during the 11 episodes of its run. The viewing experience itself feels very much like a full course fine dining adventure. A compelling narrative that continuously grabs hold of the viewers’ attention while introducing a concept mostly unfamiliar to the uninitiated - the Michelin guide to the world of French cuisine - amidst the multitude of vividly intriguing character designs that permeate this production. One of the things I love about the characterization in this drama is that none of the so-called antagonists is an outright villain - they are simply morally grey characters with their own motivations and beliefs system operating in the highly competitive and unforgiving hospitality industry.

The technical proficiency of this drama shines through, as evidenced by the high production values and top quality execution. This is particularly true for aspects concerning production and set designs, food videography element of the cinematography, the realism of the content depiction pertaining to kitchen administration, food preparation, cooking techniques and restaurant management. Even linguistics hold prominence here with French being convincingly spoken in the drama by various characters. Likewise the music of this production induces the required atmospherics of the storytelling with an infusion of tasteful classical elements that matches perfectly the cuisine that is presented.

The main selling point of Grand Maison Tokyo, undoubtedly for me, is Kimura Takuya. The character-driven narrative suits this man’s profound ability beautifully and so it proves with his award-winning performance here. Kimutaku isn’t just portraying Obana Natsuki - He IS Obana Natsuki! The depth of the characterization complements the extensive range of the actor producing a masterclass in acting, of which I’ve had the privilege to witness…no, to experience, in this drama.

In Suzuki Kyoka, viewers have the pleasure of seeing a veteran actress that matches the excellence of Kimutaku to enhance the flavours of this drama even further. Having seen her in Okaeri Mone, she exudes similar vibes but there is a wider scope to her portrayal of the co-lead Hayami Rinko here. Her characters have a way of building an emotional connection with viewers and I find myself developing this connection from the very first minute of her appearance. What an inspiring and moving performance from this lady indeed.

Tamamori Yuta’s take on Hirako Shohei catches the eye due to the complexity of the characterization where he is allocated quite a significant portion of screen time. It’s worth mentioning that he is the central character in the spin-off drama, Gura Gura Maison Tokyo. I’m also intrigued by the performance of Onoe Kikunosuke V who plays Tango Manabu, the chef of the rival Gaku restaurant. Tominaga Ai as the editor-in-chief of Marie Claire dining, Linda Machiko Richard, dazzles the screen every time she appears.

Final Thoughts

The highest rating awarded by the Michelin guide is 3 stars, which means exceptional cuisine that is worth a special journey. All things considered, watching Grand Maison Tokyo has been an extremely worthwhile experience personally and represents a special journey in and of itself. For that reason, I’m giving it the highest MDL rating that I believe it deserves. This drama is absolutely “Subarashii”!

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Details

  • Drama: Grand Maison Tokyo
  • Country: Japan
  • Episodes: 11
  • Aired: Oct 20, 2019 - Dec 29, 2019
  • Aired On: Sunday
  • Original Network: TBS
  • Duration: 54 min.
  • Content Rating: 13+ - Teens 13 or older

Statistics

  • Score: 8.3 (scored by 663 users)
  • Ranked: #1148
  • Popularity: #6026
  • Watchers: 1,608

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