Born in the town of Obama (north of Kyoto), Tatsuya Yamazaki – Tats, for short – grew up surrounded by food and hospitality. At the age of seven, he was helping his father in the family’s chopstick factory, and learning to cook at home. After high school, he pursued his passion for Japanese cuisine by studying at Tsuji Cooking School in Osaka. His life as a professional chef has led him to Osaka, Tokyo, Barcelona and London.

After moving to Melbourne in 2002, Tats worked at Aya Teppanyaki as a sushi chef and with the experience he gained, opened his own Japanese restaurant Moshi Moshi in 2008. Moshi Moshi quickly gained a following among the residents of Port Melbourne and several football clubs.

Tat’s latest venture, Machi, is another step forward. The bar and restaurant offers dishes that combine Japanese technique with Australian produce. The name it self, was inspired by its location on Inkerman Street. “Machi” means small town, or community – a description fitting for the eclectic style of St Kilda. Since opening its doors in August 2012, Machi has received glowing reviews from The Age Newspaper, The Age Good Food Guide and The Weekly Review.

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