Shokugeki (食戟 Shokugeki) is a terminology referring to cooking duel in Tōtsuki Culinary Academy. It is a longstanding tradition that allows students to settle debates and arguments through a formal duel of their culinary prowess.
A Shokugeki can be initiated by anyone within the school and can be done even by the intermediate school students. In most cases, these have been started either to further a person's personal project in Tōtsuki or to overturn a judgment by the school such as an expulsion or a disbanding of a club. Shokugekis are battled between two parties. The number of people participating in each party does not have to be equal, so one side can be challenging solo while the other has a partner. Each side must lay out their "compensation", or something they must give up if they were to lose the challenge. Both sides must agree that the compensation of the duel equate with each other. For example, if any student were to challenge an Elite Ten Council member for their chair and lose, expulsion would not equate to the value of an Elite Ten seat. However, as a result of Azami Nakiri's reformation and the conception of Central, the validity of Shokugeki became temporarily obsolete until the conclusion of the Yukihira Vs. Eizan Shokugeki.
Though a Shokugeki can be initiated by anyone in the school, there are three main conditions to issue a Shokugeki:
- An authorized individual to validate the Shokugeki. This means that a member of Tōtsuki's staff, an Elite Ten Council member, or even the director himself must validate the challenge for it to be an official Shokugeki.
- An odd number of judges. This is to prevent a Shokugeki from having a tie as much as possible. After the Yukihira Vs. Eizan Shokugeki, a special clause was made for the selection of judges thanks to Satoshi Isshiki. All judges picked for the Shokugeki must be from a neutral party to promote fairness in the judgement of dishes.
- Both sides must mutually agree to have the Shokugeki and the conditions of the Shokugeki. If one side is unwilling to participate, the challenge is not feasible.
When issuing a challenge, both parties will establish a date and a theme for the match. A request is then sent to the Shokugeki Board for approval. Once authorized, any time between the issue and the Shokugeki may be used to prepare for it. On the day of the challenge, both contestants will cook at the same time in a fixed amount of time. Both parties must provide their own ingredients and appliances they need to cook their dish. After both sides have finished their dish, they will present their Shokugeki dish to the judges.
There are several winning factors for the dish, but the four core traits in a dish are aroma, taste, presentation, and impact. After tasting both dishes, the judges will choose which dish they felt was better by writing their names down. Whoever receives the most amount of votes from the judges wins the match. Despite the fact that a Shokugeki has an odd number of judges to ensure that a match does not end in a tie, a judge does not have to choose a clear winner if they feel that both parties did equally well in the match, meaning that a duel can be ruled a tie if they are unable to choose a victor by the end of the judging time. If such a case happens, another Shokugeki will be set up for a later date. The system is by no means perfect as bias and bribes have been used in a Shokugeki before.
Once all votes have been tallied and a clear victor is declared, the winner will have all conditions of their victory immediately fulfilled and the result cannot be revoked.
Main article: List of Shokugeki Participants
Main article: List of Shokugeki Recipes
|Unknown||Hisako Arato Wins|
|Unknown||Alice Nakiri Wins|
|Unknown||Erina Nakiri Wins|
|Meat Donburi||Sōma Yukihira Wins|
|Dessert||Subaru Mimasaka Wins|
|Western Cuisine||Sōma Yukihira Wins|
|Unknown||Sōma Yukihira Wins|
|Beltfish||Etsuya Eizan Wins|
|Satsuma Jidori||Sōma Yukihira Wins|
|Salmon||Ryō Kurokiba Wins|
|Unknown||Megumi Tadokoro Wins|
|Unknown||Ikumi Mito Wins|
|Unknown||Kojirō Shinomiya Wins|
- The term Shokugeki is composed of kanji 食(shoku, lit. food, meal, or eclipse) and 戟 (geki, lit. Ji, an ancient Chinese polearm).