Otaku USA Magazine
Okamoto Kitchen Is a Tasty, Silly, Fun Treat

Okamoto Kitchen is a fun, short OVA anime that consists of ten minisodes. It follows Chizuru, a chef who wants to bring elegant Japanese food to fast-food-eating Americans; Mickey, who is easily nervous; Haru, a cute little maid who can also go into Beast Mode; and Honey, the talking dog, as they try to get their food truck business Okamoto Kitchen to be successful.

It takes place in the LA area, and it’s kind of trippy and fun to see places like Santa Monica turned anime-style. The business hits snags from the very beginning, including from other food truckers who want to see Okamoto Kitchen fail. This is done in a humorous way, and Okamoto Kitchen includes a lot of laughs. One joke I really liked — and keep in mind that I grew up in the LA area — was the over-the-top yet right-on spoof of parking signs in the first minisode. Though it does have some LA-specific humor, most of it is just humor recognizable to anyone, like when challenges are shown in a bombastic, goofy, gag way.

Another nice aspect of the anime is the music. There’s a pink-haired idol who looks like a Hatsune Miku spoof, and her song is pretty catchy. So is the ending song. The colors for the animation are also very bright and vibrant.

Each minisode is a few minutes, and altogether the series is just under half an hour. The ending includes an honor to Billy Kametz, one of the voice actors. Kametz sadly passed away last year from cancer, but Okamoto Kitchen gives fans another chance to listen to his talents that were taken away too soon.

Okamoto Kitchen leaves open the possibility of more episodes in the future. The series, which was launched thanks to a successful Kickstarter campaign, is clearly an ode to anime as well as an ode to food, specifically Japanese food, and you might get hungry while watching. Okamoto Kitchen is a tasty, fun treat to watch.


Danica Davidson is the author of the bestselling Manga Art for Beginners with artist Melanie Westin, plus its sequel, Manga Art for Everyone, and the first-of-its-kind manga chalk book Chalk Art Manga, both illustrated by professional Japanese mangaka Rena Saiya. Check out her other comics and books at www.danicadavidson.com.