Senzaemon Nakiri (薙切 仙左衛門 Nakiri Senzaemon) is a highly respected culinary expert in the world. He was the Director of Tōtsuki Culinary Academy until he was usurped of the position by his son-in-law, Azami Nakiri.
Senzaemon is an elderly man, who has long spiky white hair with a mustache and a beard. He also has a scar on his right eye running diagonally from the middle of his forehead down to just above his right cheekbone. Despite his advanced age, Senzaemon is incredibly fit and muscular. Senzaemon has a very intense, intimidating look when most students look at him, though he can sometimes have a comical and softer expressions.His wardrobe consists of an olive-colored yukata tied by a white obi and normally walks around with geta. During the 43rd Annual Tōtsuki Autumn Election Quarterfinals, Senzaemon wore a haori over his yukata. He also apparently wears a fundoshi.
As one of the most highly regarded figures in the culinary world, Senzaemon is treated with the utmost respect from those in the industry. As the current director of Tōtsuki Culinary Academy, Senzaemon holds an iron-clad philosophy in regards to culinary arts with the strict policy that his academy is infamous for. He has high expectations for his students and does not tolerate failure. He highly values tenacity, spirit, and courage, especially those who display such mettle in the face of adversity. He has taken a special interest in the 92nd Tōtsuki Generation which currently hosts a wide variety of students who come from various backgrounds and have continued to innovate and exceed his expectations.
Senzaemon is a particularly hard individual to impress given his notoriety. Should a student manage to impress him, Senzaemon has the unusual habit of striping off the top part of his yukata as a clear sign. In rare instances, Senzaemon may not disrobe himself, but his fundoshi may unravel instead. Though the crowd may not notice it, Senzaemon will be the only person to notice this and takes this as a sign of great hidden potential in a student.
Senzaemon is a loving family man and is particularly fond of his granddaughter, Erina Nakiri as he wasted no time to foster her extraordinary ability, God's Tongue. He has shown to have a solid bond with his other granddaughter Alice Nakiri. However, he is not biased by their familial relationship as he overruled Erina's decision to deny Sōma entrance from Tōtsuki and declared that Alice's dish was inferior to Sōma's dish during the Autumn Election. He also excommunicated his son-in-law, Azami Nakiri, when his demented ideologies of cooking was being forced onto Erina, putting her well being in jeopardy.
Many years ago, Senzaemon built a fearsome reputation as the "Food's Demon King", becoming a famous and well respected figure head in the culinary industry. His efforts and accomplishments eventually led him to establish the Tōtsuki Culinary Academy to build the perfect chef for the industry, allowing students to hone their skills and become the best chefs of whatever their pursuits may be.
Senzaemon eventually had a family of his own, at least having two children; a son and a daughter. His son eventually wed Leonora Nakiri and had a daughter of his own, Alice Nakiri. His daughter married Azami Nakamura and together had a daughter, Erina Nakiri. During Erina's youth, Azami subjected Erina to a particularly brutal training regime to improve her rare ability, God's Tongue. Senzaemon caught wind of his "brainwashing" and promptly exiled him from the Nakiri family and Tōsuki itself, erasing all traces of his presence. Senzaemon then became Erina's legal guardian and became highly devoted to fostering his granddaughter's culinary skills to repair the damage. Around the time the 92nd Tōtsuki Generation was about to enter the high school section of Tōtsuki, Senzaemon called up Jōichirō Yukihira, recommending that he should send his son to attend Tōtsuki in case something were to happen at the academy.
The 92nd Orientation CeremonyEdit
Main article: Introduction Arc
After the entrance examination conducted by Erina concluded, Senzaemon went to the examination kitchen. Upon entering, he saw the Transforming Furikake Gohan and the report of Sōma Yukihira, who was denied entrance into the academy. With a single taste of Sōma's dish, Senzaemon instantly annulled Erina's judgement and immediately sent Sōma a letter of acceptance.
One month later, Senzaemon welcomed the 92nd Tōtsuki Generation into the high school section of Tōtsuki Culinary Academy during their Spring Orientation Ceremony. During his speech, he wished the newest Tōtsuki generation the best, but warned them that their lives will be more cutthroat as their class size will significantly shrink by the end of their three years. To conclude his speech, Senzaemon welcomed Sōma onto the stage, who was the only student to be accepted into Tōtsuki at the high school level. Standing on the sidelines, he watched Sōma declare that he would stand on the top and saw him stand up to his granddaughter, happy to see that he made the right choice to accept Sōma into the academy.
Tōtsuki Autumn Election: Preliminary RoundEdit
Main article: Tōtsuki Autumn Election Arc
Several months later, Senzaemon greeted the 92nd Generation as they were about to start the 43rd Annual Tōtsuki Autumn Election Preliminary round. After a small mishap at the start of his speech, Senzaemon gave the 92nd Generation some words of wisdom, telling them that many previous Elite Ten Council members, including the likes of Kojirō Shinomiya and Gin Dōjima, were once standing in their shoes many years ago. Wishing them the best of luck, Senzaemon officially began the Preliminaries.
Tōtsuki Autumn Election: Main TournamentEdit
See also: 43rd Annual Tōtsuki Autumn Election
Quarterfinals: Day One Edit
Two weeks after the Preliminary Round, Senzaemon appeared as one of the judges in the Main Tournament. The first quarterfinal round was between Sōma Yukihira and his granddaughter, Alice Nakiri. with the culinary theme: Bento. As both contestants entered the arena, Senzaemon was greeted by Alice while listening to his fellow judges' compliments about Alice's past accomplishments. As Alice and Sōma unveiled their culinary equipment, the Quarterfinals began.
Alice finished cooking her dish first and walked up to the judges, holding trays with transparent domes. Upon closer inspection, Senzaemon recognized the arrangement as Temari sushi, from which Alice named her Temari Bento. However, he and the other judges were instructed by Alice to eat the sushi in a specific order, and were greatly impressed by each successive sushi. The flavor and shape of the dish was so unique and well-prepared, it prompted Senzaemon to imagine that Alice's dish was similar to a Traditional Japanese Restaurant Banquet. He then got up from his seat and stripped in response to Alice's dish which was overflowing with wisdom. Many of the students in the audience watched in horror as they could never reach Alice's caliber.
However, Senzaemon was pleased to know that there was still a chef, who had the mettle to challenge an uncompromising opponent. Sōma followed up by presenting his Evolved Nori Bento. He and the other judges were surprised that Sōma used a layered bento box instead of a square container. As Sōma and Alice exchanged a few words, Senzaemon was increasingly surprised with the contents of each successive box. When Alice questioned the concept of Sōma's bento, Senzaemon unexpectedly stepped in and answered for Sōma. He told her that Sōma did not only focus only on the technical side of the dish, but the emotional aspect as well. Moments later, Senzaemon declared that Sōma was the victor of the match, much to everyone's surprise.
Shortly after, the second round between Megumi Tadokoro and Ryō Kurokiba began with the culinary theme: Ramen. As the match started, Senzaemon talked wtih Ōizumi about the history and popularity of ramen. Senzaemon further noted that using the experience they had gained will determine whether or not, their ramen dish will exposed the chef's true worth. When both contestants unveiled their seafood soup, Senzaemon complimented Megumi's soup and to enhance his ramen experience, he and the other judges left their tables to visit both Ryō and Megumi's kitchen areas.
Ryō presented his ramen dish first, which he called Soupe De Poisson Ramen. The judges were overwhelmed by the strong impact of his dish. However, as most judges submit to his dish, Senzaemon Nakiri remained unfazed. He directly challenged Ryō's dish and was impressed enough to strip without making a single movement. Senzaemon commended his strength and admired his courage. Afterwards, Megumi calmly presented her dish, a Kozuyu Chicken Soy Sauce Ramen, to Senzaemon and the other judges. Taking the first bite, Senzaemon praised her dish and noted the differences between her dish and Ryō's. As the judges concluded their judging of Megumi's dish, Senzaemon took out his brush to declare the winner. However, Senzaemon did not strip for Megumi's dish unlike he did for Ryō and, in the end, Megumi lost the match.
After the match, Senzaemon and the other judges made their way out of the arena, and were greeted by Erina. However, Senzaemon pardoned himself and went to the bathroom. Before he even realized it, his fundoshi unraveled, which he deciphered that it meant that Megumi held an immeasurable amount of potential and referred the 92nd Generation as the "Jewel Generation".
Quarterfinals: Day Two Edit
Main article: Aldini Vs. Mimasaka Quarterfinal Shokugeki
On the second day of Main Tournament Quarterfinals, the third Quarterfinal began with Hisako Arato and Akira Hayama battling it out in a hamburger themed match. As their match began, Senzaemon and the other judges observed both contestants as they revealed their ingredients. However, he focused on Hisako with great interests, as she proceeded to mercilessly butcher her live turtle and drained the blood. Hisako presented her dish first, a Soft-Shelled Turtle Hamburger. As the judges began to eat her dish, he informed the crowd that only the judges who had eaten the burger itself could understand its power. Senzaemon then stood up and stripped his top while posing a fighting stance.
Shortly after, Akira unveiled his dish, a Kofta Kebab Burger. While the other judges was completely engrossed by the dish, Senzaemon had enough control of himself to fully pick out the secrets of the burger. After Akira lectured Hisako about their disparity, without a single doubt in the judges' minds, Senzaemon declared Akira as the winner of the match.
Before the fourth round began, a shocking announcement was made: the match between Takumi Aldini and Subaru Mimasaka would be a Shokugeki. Upon receiving the news, Senzaemon stated it was possible use the Election matches for a Shokugeki, provided the contestants follow the proper protocol to initiate one. He approached Hisanao Kageura, the president of the Shokugeki Administrative Bureau, to discuss the protocols and conditions of the match. As the contestants made their way into the arena, Senzaemon and the other judges arrived at the judges' table, where it was announced that the match was officially a Shokugeki
As the match began, Subaru and Takumi had the same ingredients, much to everyone's surprise. At the judges' table, Senzaemon was handed a document by Hisanao, regarding Subaru's previous Shokugekis, In all previous matches, Subaru's ingredients were nearly identical to his opponents, yet he had not lost a single match out of 99 matches. Though the other judges took this as a sour mark on Subaru, Senzaemon allowed the Shokugeki to continue as there were no rules for a Shokugeki that would disqualify Subaru for his cooking tactics.
Subaru presented his dish first, an Improved Three-Layer Semifreddo. Despite the lack of originality, Senzaemon and the other judges could not deny that his dessert dish was delicious. Afterwards, Takumi presented his dessert dish, which Senzaemon named it a Lemon Curd Italiano Semifreddo because Takumi added lemon curd as a fourth layer. However, even with the change, Senzaemon declared Subaru as the victor of the match, much to everyone's dismay.The following week, Senzaemon was walking through Nakiri mansion with his assistant. He saw Erina and Sōma together in the kitchen, as the latter was preparing for his own Shokugeki Semifinal match against Subaru. Following the conclusion of the Semifinals, Senzaemon's assistant informed him that he would be the head judge for the finals and needed to have two others individuals on the judges table with him.
Finally, the day of the Finals arrived. After the three contestants brandished their pacific saury, Senzaemon, along with Gin Dōjima and Leonora Nakiri, was introduced as the judges for the Finals by Satoshi Isshiki. Shortly after, Senzaemon was convinced by Alice to allow her to stay by the judging table, much to Erina's annoyance. As the roof opened, the vast night sky could be seen just as the moon started to emerge above the arena. With the path of the moon as the timer for the match, the Finals began.
As the first one done with his dish, Ryō's presented his dish, an Autumn Pacific Saury Cartoccio to the judges. The bag was still boiling hot, but as the judges opened them, an explosion of aroma escaped from the bags, submerging the judges in the smell of his seafood. However Gin was confused by the rich flavor despite the lack of seasoning. Before Ryō revealed his ingredient, Senzaemon mentioned it was the fragrance of herbs, much to the judges' surprise. Ryō brought out some herb butter which he placed in the bags before putting in the oven. This caused the fish and other ingredients to slowly marinate in it. Afterwards, Senzaemon stripped off his robe and the judges were thoroughly impressed.
Akira then presented his Scorched Pacific Saury Carpaccio. However, Senzaemon and the other judges seem confused by what seemed to be an hors d'oeuvre dish, but Akira assured them that his dish was a main course as he pulled out a cooking torch. After lightly searing his dish, Senzaemon immediately recognized that he only used a single spice: Allspice. As the judges ate his dish, the reception was overwhelmingly positive and appeared to win the judges over Ryō's dish. With time ticking down, Sōma finally finished his dish, a takikomi gohan, and presented it to the judges. Senzaemon was impressed by the permeation of the saury's flavor in his mouth, but did not stripped off his robe. When Sōma asked if he and the other judges would like seconds, none of them moved. However, just before the round ended, Senzaemon was interested enough to give Sōma's dish a second taste when he brandished a pot of soy milk, transforming his takikomi gohan into a Ojiya-Style Pacific Saury Takikomi Gohan. As Senzaemon ate the dish, the flavor caused him to instantly strip his robe without moving.
With the dish judging round over, the final verdict was at hand. The judges praised the competitors for their splendid dishes and performance. However, the deciding factor for the match was the person who could display who they were as a chef through their cooking the most. Akira was declared the winner of the 43rd Autumn Election with Sōma and Ryō placing second. As the award ceremony concluded, Senzaemon stated that, after today, another new "jewel" was born.
Main article: Stagiaire Arc
After the conclusion of the Autumn Election, Senzaemon gathered with the rest of the academy board to discuss the current standouts for the 92nd generation. As the meeting progress, Senzaemon monologued about the true purpose of the current event in front the 92nd Generation, the Stagiaire. As the final hurdle for the first years, they would now begin to experience the full force of the school life as the Stagiaire would eliminate any "ordinary" students. He also spent time helping to plan the upcoming Autumn Leaf Viewing for the 92nd generation.
Moon Banquet Festival Edit
Main article: Moon Banquet Festival Arc
During the Autumn Leaf Viewing, Senzaemon watched from afar as the 92nd Generation Autumn Election participants met up with the Elite Ten Council members. Several weeks later, the Academy started its Moon Banquet Festival, which Senzaemon started with the entire academy singing its school song.
At the end of the festival, Senzaemon received the alarming news of an unwelcome intruder to the campus. Knowing where he was, Senzaemon gathered an entourage of cars and men to head down to Erina's booth. Arriving on the scene, he managed to catch Azami leaving Erina's booth. The two engaged in a heated battle, defending their respective views of what the culinary industry needs from the students of Tōtsuki. Fed up with Azami's presence on campus, Senzaemon demanded that he leave as he was not welcomed on campus. However, Azami brandished an official document signed in support by six of the Elite Ten Council members. Its contents stated that the Council demanded that Azami replace Senzaemon as the director of the academy. With the support of the Elite Ten behind him, Senzaemon was forced to submit to his son as Azami declared that he was the new "king" of Tōtsuki.
Main article: Central Arc
Within a few short days, Senzaemon's replacement spread across the academy and soon became official with Azami's appointment speech. Knowing the threat that Azami would pose to not only the Academy, but Erina as well, Senzaemon went to Polar Star Dormitory to seek help. Senzaemon waited until Sōma returned to his room to talk to him in particular. Revealing that he was the one who suggested to Jōichirō to send Sōma to Tōtsuki, Senzaemon invited Sōma to accompany him on his daily exercise routine. During their jog, Senzaemon revealed much of Erina's dark past to Sōma. After finishing his story, Senzaemon pleaded to Sōma to save Erina. Mulling over the director's words, Sōma stated that his one goal since his first day at Tōtsuki was to have Erina admit that his food was good, thereby passively accepting his request. As Sōma left to return to Polar Star, Senzaemon reflected on the situation, thinking that if there was anyone who could save Erina and the Academy from Azami, it would be Sōma and the rest of the 92nd Generation.
Senzaemon's cooking style has not been shown. However, he is an extremely well respected figurehead in the culinary industry and has a deep wealth of knowledge of cooking.
- Caligraphy - Senzaemon is highly adept at calligraphy, able to write out Sōma's name on an extremely large paper with an equally large pen brush in a matter of seconds.
- Senzaemon uses the kanji for Hermit or Wizard (仙, Sen), Left (左, Sa), Defense or Protection (衛, E), and Gate (門, Mon). Nakiri uses the kanji for To Mow Down (薙, Na) and Limit (切, Kiri).