Chef Dharshan Munidasa, Founder of Nihonbashi and Ministry of Crab, receiving the award from Mizukoshi Hideaki, Ambassador of Japan to Sri Lanka.
Chef Dharshan Munidasa, Founder of Nihonbashi and Ministry of Crab, has been awarded “The Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Rays” by Mizukoshi Hideaki, Ambassador of Japan to Sri Lanka. This award recognizes Chef Munidasa’s outstanding contributions in promoting Japanese cuisine and food culture in Sri Lanka.
As a person with dual Sri Lankan Japanese heritage, Chef Munidasa introduced his renowned Japanese restaurant Nihonbashi in 1995, and has been a pioneer in introducing fine Japanese cuisine to Sri Lanka. He has been instrumental in familiarizing the Sri Lankan palate with the intricacies of Japanese gastronomy. Chef Munidasa’s commitment to sourcing the highest quality Japanese ingredients and upholding traditional Japanese culinary techniques has made Nihonbashi the first restaurant from Sri Lanka to be listed on the Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants list. Chef Munidasa’s visionary creation, Ministry of Crab, has further deepened the Sri Lankan community’s appreciation for Japanese food culture. The restaurant incorporates Japanese culinary philosophies such as the use of dashi when creating the signature mud crab and freshwater prawn dishes.
Ambassador Mizukoshi commended Chef Munidasa’s contribution to the understanding, promotion, and dissemination of Japanese cuisine, “Washoku,” which is recognized as UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage, both within and outside Sri Lanka.
The Ambassador also praised Chef Munidasa for actively contributing to the facilitation of Japanese-Sri Lankan relations through his unwavering commitment to cultural exchange, which further solidified the bond between the two nations.
Chef Munidasa revealed exciting new plans for his 29-year-old restaurant, “This year Nihonbashi will move to a brand-new location at Port City, Colombo. The evolution of Nihonbashi continues as this new space will be designed and built befitting of this recognition and of the responsibility and belief placed on me”. With this move, he is hopeful that Colombo will witness a renaissance of Japanese Cuisine with Nihonbashi 2.0.
Chef Munidasa’s award is a testament to his relentless efforts in promoting the Japanese cuisine and the culture of food in Sri Lanka. His dedication towards preserving the traditional Japanese culinary techniques and his commitment to cultural exchange has earned him this recognition. With his new plans for Nihonbashi, he is all set to take the Sri Lankan community’s appreciation for Japanese food culture to new heights.