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I Want Samurai Gourmet's Greasy Stew

How do food photographers make food look so darn delicious?

The other week I was attempting to photograph sweet little cupcakes, and while they didn't turn out too badly, I'm definitely still a beginner at the food photography gig.

I was thinking about this while watching Samurai Gourmet on Netflix with my son. He's 15 and definitely the one in the household getting the most out of our Netflix subscription. Usually holed up in his bedroom watching on his laptop while simultaneously "studying".

So last weekend when he suggested we watch a Japanese show together, I was pleasantly surprised and agreed to watch it with him. Of course we ended up binge watching half a dozen episodes and kept watching long after I'd finished folding all the washing.

Samurai Gourmet is a strange kind of Japanese drama-ish show about an older gentleman who is recently retired and in each episode seems to find some reason to go out and enjoy food. He has a kind of "imaginary friend" who is a samurai and encourages him to be more outgoing or brave in whatever circumstance he finds himself. There's really not much to the plot apart from an excuse to end up eating something. In slow motion with lingering close-ups. If you had to give a definition of "food porn" this is it. No matter what food appears on the show it looks incredible.

I was watching a close-up shot of a beer being poured. It looked so refreshing I felt cooler just watching it. "Wow," I said to my son, "That looks so good I feel like a beer now and I don't even really like beer," and he said "Yeah - I don't think they should classify this as PG because I want a beer now too and I'm only 15."

The next shot that really got me was a pot of bubbling greasy stew. I think it was even intestine stew. Greasy blobs of oil floated on the surface and swirled around as it was ladled out into a bowl. The Samurai Gourmet was sitting in a run down dive of a bar where the roof leaked so badly that patrons had to borrow umbrellas from behind the bar. But the way they filmed that stew. I was getting hungry! Our whole family was drooling and wondering where we could find that bar.

So - free ad for Netflix - if you're getting bored with your Instagram food porn, and you don't mind subtitles (or you speak Japanese), check out Samurai Gourmet for some live-action food porn. And make a booking at a Japanese restaurant for straight after because you are going to be hungry.

Samurai Gourmet on Netflix
The face you make after eating anything on Samurai Gourmet.


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