Since 2016 sushi chef Andy Matsuda has been sharing his knowledge with and training Holland America Line’s shipboard chefs to ensure that the cruise line’s staff is at the forefront of sushi trends and techniques. In recognition of his significant impact on the brand, Holland America Line is elevating Matsuda to its esteemed Culinary Council — a group of elite culinary collaborators who are among the world’s leading food authorities.
The Culinary Council is led by Holland America Line’s Master Chef Rudi Sodamin, who is joined by international chefs Jonnie Boer, David Burke, Elizabeth Falkner, Ethan Stowell and Jacques Torres.
“Sushi has to be made perfectly for it to be considered authentic, and Andy has transformed the sushi we serve on board by ensuring our culinary team is expertly trained,” said Orlando Ashford, president for Holland America Line. “Sushi is an art, and Andy’s creations are delectable, innovative and visually beautiful. We are thrilled to add him to the Culinary Council, where he will continue to influence many facets of our sushi program.”
Today, Holland America Line guests can indulge in Matsuda’s signature rolls at Tamarind — the award-winning Asian-fusion restaurant on board several Holland America Line ships — and at Tamarind’s sushi counter on Koningsdam. To further enhance the sushi experience Nieuw Statendam will establish a separate sushi bar called Nami Sushi, which will feature more rolls created exclusively by Matsuda. The word “nami” has Japanese origins, means “wave” and is an homage to the ocean views enjoyed at the venue.
Matsuda’s sushi selections on Tamarind’s full dinner menu and at Nami Sushi include a Tempura Lobster Roll with soft shell crab tempura; Dragon Roll with tempura shrimp, unagi sauce and avocado; Tsutsumi Roll with snapper, green olive, caper and avocado; Futomoki Roll with crab, yamagobo, avocado and cucumber; Volcano Roll with sesame-marinated salmon and Thai chilis; and Nigiri Sushi with tuna, salmon and ebi shrimp.
In addition to its partnerships through the Culinary Council, Holland America Line also collaborates with master mixologist Dale DeGroff on its cocktail program and acclaimed wine critic James Suckling to curate its wine list.
About Sushi Chef Andy Matsuda
Matsuda learned the joy of cooking at his family’s Japanese restaurant when he was a child, and he went on to have an apprenticeship at Genpachi, one of the most famous restaurants in Osaka, Japan, before bringing his sushi skills to Los Angeles. Following a battle with cancer, he sought a deeper understanding of the relationship between food, health, people and the environment, which he then parlayed into becoming one of the world’s foremost sushi experts.
The Japanese-born chef brings more than 35 years of sushi-making experience and 15 years of teaching to the premium cruise line. At Matsuda’s Sushi Chef Institute in Los Angeles, California, he teaches aspiring chefs and professionals from all over the world about sushi and Japanese cuisine. More than 1,500 graduates of the institute have gone on to careers in sushi restaurants or have become restaurateurs themselves.