Food Wars 94 is the second chapter of the series to be officially serialized in Weekly Shonen Jump and makes for a fun, Shonen-style series for the aspiring cooking geek. Food Wars is all over the place lately, with the manga being serialized in Weekly Shonen Jump as well as an anime just announced for next year. I think the series has definitely earned its time in the spotlight. Food Wars reminds me a lot of Bakuman: it's a fun series about a niche topic with drama not boring enough to scare you away.
With Food Wars, you come for the food geekery, and-- well, you stay for the food geekery. Food Wars 94 takes some time to talk about inosinic acid buildup. This occurs on a page just before a discussion (including a graph) of why some pike show signs of freshness that actually correlate with a degradation in the Pike's texture, rather than serving as a sign of texture.
These first two serialized chapters have honestly been a great way to hook someone like me in. I love to cook, and love hearing all the food science stuff behind what makes food taste good. Additionally, as a fan of Shonen stuff in general, I'm a sucker for the age-old plot device of characters with insanely unbelievable natural abilities, apparently even when it's an ability to pick out a fish.
I never really thought about trips to the fish market being an integral part of being a chef until I watched Jiro Dreams of Sushi. I knew that fresh ingredients were probably a bigger part of preparing raw food, but I still didn't know how vitally important the trips to the market were for any chef period. Food Wars takes us there in this chapter, and I can confirm that if you liked Jiro, you will probably like this manga.
It's an exciting time for Shonen manga with the gaping hole that Naruto is going to leave behind. Start giving some new series a chance if you haven't already!
Writer: Yūto Tsukuda Illustrator: Shun Saeki Publisher: Shueisha Inc. Images are from Weekly Shonen Jump Issues #49 and #50