While most of us were creating a Halloween costume last weekend, Shinji Muramoto of Restaurant Muramoto was creating cuisine.
Muramoto won the Dueling Chefs' Battle at the Madison Food and Wine Expo last weekend with creative use of secret ingredients ranging from an assortment of wild mushrooms to walleye, Pabst Blue Ribbon and venison. This melding of different flavors is nothing new for Muramoto. His namesake restaurant, 106 King St., melds Eastern and Western flavor into creative dishes like Pan Roasted Duck Breast with Thai-inspired Maple Sweet and Sour Sauce.
When Muramoto decided to open his restaurant in 2004, he chose to create an Asian Fusion menu instead of focusing on his Japanese heritage.
According to Muramoto, 'there are lots of Japanese restaurants around, and I just don't like making sushi.'
His restaurant is definitely unique to the area, and the recent Duel gave Muramoto a chance to exhibit his creativity. His style ranked supreme with judges at the competition; after three rounds Muramoto beat several friends, including defending champion Robert Hughes, of Serendipity, to secure the title of Culinary Conqueror.