Instructors

Our team of top instructors include leading chefs and home cooking experts.
Akemi Yokoyama

Akemi Yokoyama is a Japanese chef, presenter and culinary instructor based in London. Her regular classes at Sozai Cooking School have received very favourable reviews in national media, including Time Out and The Telegraph. She has also appeared on the popular TV programme, C4’s Sunday Breakfast, teaching the presenters how to make sushi. Her friendly teaching style is easy to follow and informative, she will teach the art of healthy Japanese home cooking to students at all levels.

Akemi’s enthusiasm for gastronomy originated early in her childhood in Sapporo, where enjoying the spoils of wild vegetable foraging and sea fishing were regular family activities. This drove her understanding regarding the importance of the freshest, highest quality ingredients together with exquisite taste pairings in Japanese food.

She demonstrates Japanese cooking in the UK and Europe at various diverse events and she regularly works with the Japanese government’s related organizations promoting Japanese cuisine to the media and public. Akemi was recently invited to the prestigious cruise ship MS Queen Elizabeth as the guest chef to entertain guests with the authentic Japanese cuisines and to train their chefs.

Akemi is a member of the Japanese Culinary Academy UK, is a certified miso sommelier and has the professional qualification WSET Sake Level 3.

Izumi Nakamura

Izumi grew up in Amakusa, a beautiful chain of five islands located in the south of Japan, blessed with delicious, natural, wholesome food -Izumi has never been far away from the joy that food can bring, honing her super-healthy recipes in surroundings with rich history.

Izi draws upon this upbringing in her work as an outstanding sushi chef, dietary consultant, and qualified sake sommelier. Her background as a trained and experienced pharmacist also enables her to create dishes and menus that are as nutritionally balanced as they are delicious.

Izi shares her passion for Japanese cooking and the health benefits to be had from it through her fun, informal, hands-on lessons. Her down to earth teaching and creative demonstrations at many companies and shows such as Your Sushi, Big Life Organics and Hyper Japan have already encapsulated and combining her talents. Her private lessons will show you how to create simple, delicious food. She is also the founder of 5 Incorporated Ltd, offering private chef/corporate event catering services.

Izi is a member of the Japanese Culinary Academy UK.

Yuka Caves

Yuka’s passion for Japanese cuisine began at a very young age, taught by her grandmother and mother in rural Kyushu. Her childhood was filled with daily trips to fish, meat and vegetable markets where her grandmother taught her how to source the freshest of ingredients. Yuka trained in the art of traditional Kaiseki cuisine at Tokyo’s highly regarded Kaiseki cooking school, Kinsa-Ryu.

Yuka’s extensive knowledge and expertise in Japanese home cooking and formal training enable her to teach with an approachable and friendly technique. Her concept focuses on using four main seasonal ingredients to create simple and delicious menus which are beautifully presented. Yuka is a big advocate for using local ingredients which are easily accessible and reasonable. With her creative flair and natural enthusiasm, Yuka’s classes are fun, practical and hands-on, whatever your ability. Yuka is also a committee member of CookBookFestival.

Reviews on TripAdvisor

Hitomi

Hitomi is from Hyōgo Prefecture (兵庫県, Hyōgo-ken) in the Kansai region of Honshu island, Japan. She is a certified washoku cooking instructor specialising in teaching Japanese cooking to non Japanese students. Hitomi discovered her love of teaching and sharing Japanese culture and cuisine, through hosting many gatherings when she lived in Hong Kong. She continued to hone and develop her teaching skills in Tokyo, and now London. Join Hitomi for a hands-on true Japanese home cooking with lots of tips and smiles :)

Tomokazu Matsuya

Born in Hokkaido, Matsuya completed his culinary education at 17.
After obtaining his cook's license he joined the self-defense forces of Japan and for 15 years cooked for many VIPs of many nations as the forces' chef.
After starting his own venture, he took a position at SO Restaurant, London, as the Head Sushi Chef. He is currently Head Sushi Chef at Miyama Mayfair.

Sozai Special guest chefs

We are proud of welcoming the most talented chefs of Japanese cuisine from all over the world.

Satomi Dosseur

Satomi Dosseur is a Japanese Sake specialist and Director of Enshu Ltd, providing SSI(Sake Service Institute) International’s Kikisake-shi course as well as sake related events.

She moved to the UK in 2005 to join London-based, contemporary Japanese restaurant Roka and Zuma, to explore and understand more about sake outside of Japan. Satomi is certified by the SSI (Sake Service Institute) as a qualified Kikisake-shi and Shochu Kikisake-shi. She has also completed the Japan Sake Brewers Association’s technical Sake making course in 2011. Satomi is a judge in the Sake category of the International Wine Challenge since 2009, alongside becoming the head Sake sommelier at Zuma Restaurant.
After working 9 years for Zuma, she left to become SSI International’s ducator in UK and launch her company, Enshu Ltd.

It is the perfect experience gift for a birthday, anniversary, wedding, valentine, graduate, Christmas, Mother's day, or any special occasion! The lucky recipient can choose from our various yummy cooking classes.