Chef Jimi of '21' Club - Biography
New York, NY
Jimi Yui’s passion for food and design—the recurring themes in his life and work—developed during his childhood at The Guest House, his family’s celebrated Shanghai- and Peking-style restaurant in Tokyo. But his interest solidified as he traveled across the globe for his education at Cornell’s renowned Hotel and Architectural schools. The resulting career has spanned three decades of food-service and hospitality design, consulting, and management, or as Yui might put it, three decades of speaking the language of chefs.
For more than a quarter-century, YuiDesign has served marquee chefs and hospitality leaders worldwide. Within his extensive and star-studded roster of clients, Yui has overseen projects for Mario Batali and Joe Bastianich, Masaharu Morimoto, Gray Kunz, Masa Takayama, José Andrés, Jonathan Benno, Michael White, Jimmy Bradley, and Neal Gallagher. And it’s no surprise he’s so sought-after in the industry. Yui’s philosophy—that both front and back of house play integral and complementary roles in the success of any operation—defines modern hospitality.
Not only does YuiDesign execute projects on time and on a budget (an invaluable ability in the industry), but Yui understands the challenges of survival in the competitive world of foodservice. His designs not only incorporate an appropriate aesthetic but also are geared toward efficiency of service. A member of the Cornell Society of Hotelmen and the Foodservice Consultants Society International, Yui maintains a position of leadership in the design world.