Japan born Chef Shota began his culinary journey at the age of sixteen, working for a well-acclaimed sushi restaurant in his hometown of Seattle, WA. At the age of eighteen, Nakajima moved to Osaka, Japan to learn about the art of Japanese cuisine. In Japan, Nakajima had the opportunity to work for Michelin Star rated Chef Yasuhiko Sakamoto. As one would expect, this experience changed Chef Shota’s perspective on cooking.
Since returning to Seattle, it has been Nakajima’s dream to convey Chef Sakamoto’s approach to hospitality and Japanese cuisine in the United States. In 2017 Nakajima competed on Iron Chef Gauntlet and was a national semi-finalist for the James Beard Award in 2018, 2019 & 2020. He bested Bobby Flay in a tempura challenge on ‘Beat Bobby Flay’ and is an Eater Young Guns recipient.