Japan Picks 149 Artisans as Contemporary Masters (News)


Tokyo, Nov. 6 (Jiji Press)—The Ministry of Health, Labor, and Welfare has chosen 149 people in Japan as contemporary master artisans for fiscal 2017, honoring them as leaders in their respective professions with outstanding skills.

Those selected include Nakaie Hitoshi, a 55-year-old Toyota Motor Corp. employee from the central prefecture of Aichi, who is the world's foremost expert in casting metal parts, such as cylinder heads for Formula 1 race car engines.

Also chosen was Nakata Masaoki, a 56-year-old plasterer from Osaka Prefecture, western Japan, who revived an ancient method in the repair and preservation work for the main tower of Himeji Castle, a national treasure in the adjacent prefecture of Hyōgo.

Philippe Bigot, 75, known as "the god of French bread," was highly rated for creating a baguette boom in Japan after he came to the country in 1965 and fostering more than 150 bakers. He runs bakery shops mainly in Hyōgo.

The list of masters, announced Sunday, also include Mori Satoru, a 39-year-old sommelier from Tokyo, who finished eighth in the 2016 world championship, and Shimada Susumu, a 70-year-old patissier, also from the capital city, who introduced ganache and creme brulee to Japan.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

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