A New Guest Chef Residency Programme at méli mélo

  • By Camryn Williams
  • méli mélo -Yuki No Koe- presents “HokkAsia”, an exciting new creative space allowing chefs to be stimulated, merging the cultures of Hokkaido and Asia through collaborative dishes and dining experiences.  
  • The inaugural residency kicks off on 24 February with two special Four Hands Dinners featuring the brilliance of Michelin Star Chef Kawano Masahiko from Chaleur in Singapore and Hokkaido’s very own Michelin virtuoso Chef Sato Hironori, as well as Singapore inspired dishes in the daily a la carte menu.
  • The second part of series celebrates the culinary inspirations of Malaysia with Chef Lee and Chef Yong; the regionally acclaimed up and coming chefs and owners behind ‘Eat and Cook’ restaurant in Kuala Lumpur. The week is topped off with a gastronomic fusion of dishes with a Six Hands Dinner with Chef Sato Hironori.

The Japanese word “eat” is comprised of the characters “human” and “better”, which implies “eating makes people better”. We certainly wouldn’t disagree with that!  At Setsu Niseko, we dive into a world of culinary mastery as we welcome some of Asia’s top chefs to experience Hokkaido; encounter the people, explore the culture, and discover local ingredients and create unforgettable new culinary delights. 

Through hokkAsia’s series of Chef’s Residencies, they invite you to savour a collection of “umami” packed dishes created to excite each of your five senses. Each residency runs for a limited one-week period and features a specially curated week long menu inspired by the country of our guest chef, alongside an exclusive Four or Six-Hands Dinner experience that celebrates the art of gastronomy.

The first two chapters of hokkAsia commence in February and March with Executive Chef Kawano from the one-Michelin star restaurant Chaleur in Singapore closely followed by two incredible young talents from Malaysia who have been making waves steadily climbing the ladder of Asia’s Best Restaurants and featured in the 2023 Michelin Guide.  Read on to discover more about the first chapter hokkAsia below.

Chef Kawano Masahiko from Chaleur X Chef Sato Hironori from méli mélo

Taking the helm for the inaugural chapter of hokkAsia is Michelin-starred Chef Kawano Masahiko from Chaleur in Singapore, taking us on an exquisite culinary journey curated together with Hokkaido’s very own Michelin- starred Chef Sato Hironori from méli mélo, Sapporo.

Flavours of Singapore: 24 February - 2 March

For just one week from 24 February - 2 March, guests can enjoy a bevy of Singaporean delights with a specially curated a la carte menu inspired by Hokkaido’s rich produce and the melting pot of flavours in Singapore. Diners can enjoy the teams unique Hokkaido take on Singapore classics such as Hainanese Chicken Rice, Bak Kut Teh Pork Noodle Soup, Chili Crab, Grilled Chicken with Coconut Curry Sauce and Butter Pineapple Cake. Let your tastebuds embark on a journey across the Lion City without leaving the mountains of Niseko. 

The Singapore inspired hokkAsia menu is available alongside the regular a la carte menu for both lunch and dinner. Reservations recommended.

*Chef Kawano will only be cooking on the 1st and 2nd of March and not during the rest of the Singapore Week. 

Menu: Here

Reserve Now

Four Hands 8-Course Set Dinner Menu: Limited Dates 1 & 2 March

Treat yourself to an evening of gourmet indulgence as two culinary masters join forces to curate a special dinner menu that transcends the ordinary. Available for just two nights, highlights of this culinary fusion of Japanese and French cuisine include Chef Kawano’s signature dish Duck Noodle Soup and Tokachi-Waka Ushi Wagyu, a delectable pastry pie of beef and Hokkaido vegetables. The fourth course, Ishinagi, includes a special marriage of culinary styles as Chef Kawano prepares the seabass and Chef Hiro creates the sauce. 

Dinner Seatings: 17:00, 18:00 or 19:00
Price: 8 Course Dinner Menu French Fusion ¥30,000 (service and tax included)

Inhouse guests enjoy a complimentary welcome cocktail or wine with the menu.
Reservations required. Limited seating available each evening so please secure your reservation early.    

Menu: Here

Guests who book before the 28 February enjoy a special rate of ¥25,000 per person (service and tax included)

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Chef Lee and Chef Soh from Eat and Cook in Kuala Lumpur X Michelin Starred Chef Sato Hironori from méli mélo

Flavours of Malaysia: 3 - 10 March

The second chapter in our hokkAsia series celebrates the culinary inspirations of Malaysia with Chef Lee and Chef Soh, the regionally acclaimed up and coming chefs and owners behind ‘Eat and Cook’ restaurant in Kuala Lumpur ranked #79 in Asia’s Best Restaurants.

For just one week from 3rd to 10th March, guests can enjoy a special a la carte menu inspired by the spices of Malaysian street food fused with the flavours of Hokkaido. A must try is meli melo’s French twist on Laksa; Malaysia’s iconic spicy seafood noodle soup, and Hokkaido French Toast with delicious coconut Kaya Jam. Other menu highlights include Malaysian Seafood Curry, Bak Kut The Black Soup and Spicy Tom Yam Fish .

The Malaysia inspired hokkAsia menu is available alongside the regular a la carte menu for both lunch and dinner. Reservations recommended.

*Chef Lee and Chef Soh will only be cooking on the 7th and 8th of March and not during the rest of the Malaysia Week. 

Menu: Here

Reserve Now

Six Hands 9-Course Set Dinner: Limited Dates 7 & 8 March

Treat yourself to an evening of gourmet indulgence as three culinary masters join forces to curate a special omakase menu that transcends the ordinary available for just two nights. Highlights of this culinary fusion of Malaysian cuisine with the winter flavours of Hokkaido include an amuse-bouche that showcases the richness of Hokkaido oysters, the intense flavours of sea urchin and winter hot spring tomatoes cultivated with geothermal heat, as well as a sublime take on traditional Chawanmushi with hairy crab and crab roe. A series of main courses featuring Venison, Monkfish, and Wagyu Beef from the local region are sure to stimulate your palates, before finishing with a contemporary take on Malaysian Claypot Chicken Rice.

Dinner Seatings: 17:00, 18:00 or 19:00
Price: 9 Course Dinner Menu - Fusion Cuisine with Hokkaido Flavours ¥30,000 (service and tax included)
Inhouse guests enjoy a complimentary welcome cocktail or wine with the menu.
Reservations required. Limited seating available each evening so please secure your reservation early.  

Menu: Here

Guests who book before the 29th February enjoy a special rate of ¥25,000 per person (service and tax included)

Reserve Now

Meet the Maestros

Guest Chef - Executive Chef Kawano Masahiko – Chaleur, Singapore

Chef Masahiko Kawano, a graduate of the prestigious Tsuji Culinary Institute, embarked on his culinary journey at a tender young age. Even as a child, he displayed a passion for creating delectable dishes and confectioneries, rushing home after school to delight his loved ones with his culinary experiments, all in the pursuit of putting a smile on their faces. His unwavering dedication and innate talent led to a remarkable breakthrough when he accomplished a feat that left the culinary world astounded. Within a mere 9 months, Chef Kawano achieved the incredible milestone of receiving his first Michelin Star for a restaurant he personally conceived and built from the ground up.

Host Chef - Chef Sato Hironori - méli mélo, Sapporo

He has been highly conscious about food since childhood, and naturally decided to become a chef. After graduating, he moved to France. After returning to Japan, he worked at a restaurant in Sapporo. In 2013, at the age of 33, he opened méli mélo in Odori, Sapporo.

Chef Sato combines French techniques and Japanese sensibilities into a single dish to express a variety of textures, aromas, and flavours. The restaurant received a one-star award in 2017 for its highly creative cuisine, in which the ingredients melt together the moment you put it in your mouth, allowing you to see the stories and scenes of the ingredients.

Guest Chefs – Chef Lee and Chef Yong – Eat and Cook, Kuala Lumpur

Born in Perak district of Malaysia, Chef Lee's childhood years were spent in enjoyment standing next to his grandmother in the kitchen, prepping and cooking together. Raised in the peaceful town of Taiping known for its kopitiam food culture, Chef Yong decided to follow in his cousin’s footsteps and joined Berjaya University where he met Lee.

After graduating these two young accomplished chefs took a leap of faith during Covid and opened their first iteration of Eat and Cook in 2020 in a nearly-abandoned shopping mall. The restaurant quickly became hugely popular, despite only seating less than 10 patrons a night. After moving to their new location, a year later, Eat and Cook made it onto Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants 2021 extended list (which features restaurants ranked 51 to 100), initially landing at a respectable No. 81 and now ranked #79. Their innovative menu focused on Malaysian ingredients changes every three to four months to introduce a new chapter. Each new chapter reveals the characteristics of that season.

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