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Since this is Morimoto's first battle, it is also the debut of his costume and colors (silver and red).
Although Iron Chef Italian is in the opening, he is not one of the Iron Chefs who is presented for battle.
Both of the previous Japanese Iron Chefs are sitting in the royal box and are asked to comment on Morimoto's performance throughout the show.
Unlike most battles, the Iron Chef is predetermined before the battle begins. The challenger is not given the opportunity to "choose" an Iron Chef, instead it is announced that he will be facing Kobe. This sets up the battle of "the apprentices."
Although the announcers only label it cola, it is clear that Morimoto's "beverage of choice" during the battle is a 20 ounce bottle of Coca-Cola.
One of Morimoto's dishes had such a strong smell that the camera man filming it reacted with a grimace. The commentators were so amused by it, they pointed it out and showed footage of the face he made.
Guest Yoko Akino mentions that actor Robert Deniro co-owns Morimoto's New York restaurant.
There are three types of rice offered as a theme ingredient:
California rice (from the U.S.) 20kg
"Koshi-hikari" rice (Japan, considered the best in the country) 20kg
Glutinous rice 20kg
The guests in the booth appear dressed in costume to match the "Wedgewood" theme.
The chefs are limited in their Guinea fowls from Nagano, Japan:
10 with innards
15 without innards
The chefs have two tasks: use the secret ingredient and showcase the $250,000 worth of Wedgwood china.
The challenger brings the Chairman a gift. The Chairman is quick to point out that he can not be bribed in determining the final outcome (and of course, Kaga never has a vote during judging).
There are 15 Spanish mackerels from the waters near Kyushu, Japan available to the chefs. It is also revealed that each fish cost at least three hundred American dollars.
The challenger's brother is in the audience at Kitchen Stadium. Throughout the episode, the announcers refer to him as a "backseat chef" because he is a classically trained French chef who seems very involved in his brother's menu.
When Morimoto brings U.S. dollar bills folded in origami shapes, it is revealed that while the competitors did not know the secret ingredient, they did have advance warning about the Boys' Festival theme.
An altar is set up in the middle of kitchen stadium. It celebrates "boys' festival" and contains a replica of a samurai's armor.
Because of the long cooking time of bamboo shoots, the competitors are given 60 "pre-boiled" stalks and 6 raw from Kyoto.
The challenger was a professional bowler before joining his family's business and becoming a chef.
There are two varieties of mangoes available for the battle: 100 Mexican mangoes and 80 Philippine mangoes.
Kitchen Stadium has been specially decorated for this battle with cacti and Mexican flags.