This Japanese-French-West-Coast fusion restaurant was so named after the ‘pidgin’ language, dictating a kind of creative amalgamation in both concept and execution. The opening chef, Makoto Ono, came from the elite culinary scene in Hong Kong and aimed to push boundaries with his contemporary and explorative style of food; as an extension of those ideas, the interior design was an exercise in fusing Japanese farmhouse and Japanese contemporary with an aesthetic straight out of the laboratory. Much of Makoto’s cooking techniques took risks and challenged convention; in kind, we wove in lab-style features like the sliding glass partition to the kitchen and fixtures that border on clinical. Understated, subversive touches contrasting with pheasant taxidermy, goose wing and gold-plated cleaver art serve to boldly counterpoint a Japanese lineage rooted in subtlety. The quieter details–minimalist millwork and a clean colour palette of whites and woods–restored the balance, but even the simple things in Pidgin—the Lazy Susan transition between the kitchen pass and chef’s table, floating benches, and talon taps—were conceived in the spirit of irreverence.

Installation art in collaboration with Enriquez Alvarez