INK Entertainment and Icon Legacy Hospitality Announce Partnership with Celebrity Chef Morimoto

Morimoto Restaurant to open late 2015 on King Street West in Toronto

TORONTO, May 28, 2015 /CNW/ - INK Entertainment, together with ICON Legacy Hospitality, two of North America's leading hospitality and entertainment companies, today announce a collaborative partnership with world-renowned Chef Masaharu Morimoto to open the first-ever Morimoto restaurant in Canada. Known for his starring role on the Japanese television show Iron Chef as well as Food Network's Iron Chef America, Chef Morimoto's signature style of cuisine seamlessly integrates Western and Japanese ingredients and techniques.

Designed by Munge Leung, Morimoto Restaurant will be located in the heart of Toronto's Entertainment District in the newly built Theatre Park building at 224 King Street West, with a planned opening late 2015.

"Toronto is a world-class destination and I am excited and honoured to become part of the city's dynamic and vibrant restaurant and hospitality community," says Masaharu Morimoto.

"Partnering with a talented and respected chef like Masaharu Morimoto is another step in our vision of revolutionizing the dining scene in Toronto," says Charles Khabouth, CEO, INK Entertainment. "Together, INK Entertainment, ICON Legacy Hospitality and Chef Morimoto will provide Torontonians with a world-class Japanese dining experience that is unlike any other in the city."

"We could not be more pleased to partner with Chef Morimoto to bring his legendary culinary experience and talent to Toronto," says Hanif Harij, CEO, ICON Legacy Hospitality. "Our teams share a passion for delivering world-class dining to our customers and we want this restaurant to be an unforgettable experience for each and every one of our guests."

Born and raised in Hiroshima, Japan, Masaharu Morimoto studied the art of sushi in his hometown after a shoulder injury ended a promising career as a baseball catcher. After five years of operating his own restaurant in Japan, Morimoto moved to America to expand his culinary repertoire, and in 2001, he opened his first eponymous restaurant in Philadelphia. He has since expanded his culinary reach across the globe, with restaurants in Mexico City, New York City, Boca Raton, Chicago, Maui, South Beach, Philadelphia, Waikiki and Napa Valley.

About INK Entertainment
INK Entertainment is Canada's leading lifestyle and entertainment company. Operating since 1982, INK Entertainment has demonstrated an enviable ability to read the pulse of ever-changing cultural times and tastes, responding with a host of successful enterprises, including the Parisian-themed Bistro La Société (Toronto and Montreal), the deejay-headlined VELD Music Festival and a number of trendy nightclubs, including Uniun, Product, CUBE, Dragonfly and Tattoo Queen West.

Headquartered in Toronto and helmed by visionary entrepreneur Charles Khabouth, INK Entertainment's innovative approach, fusing dining, lifestyle, entertainment and design has led the company to team up with several significant industry partners in Canada and the U.S.: Cirque Du Soleil on the Beatles Revolution nightclub in Las Vegas; Loews Hotels and Resorts for La Société Montreal and several American-based projects in 2015-16; ICON Legacy for Weslodge, Patria, Byblos (Toronto and Miami), NAO Steakhouse, Citta and STORYS Building and; Lifetime Developments for Bisha Hotel & Residences, the newest private label hotel and residence brand to originate in Toronto since The Four Seasons in the 1960s. For more information, visit www.inkentertainment.com or connect with INK Entertainment on Facebook and Twitter.

About ICON Legacy Hospitality
ICON Legacy is a full-service international hospitality company with a focus on the design and operation of hotels and restaurants. Founded in 2010, ICON excels in the development of innovative concepts and progressive brands that revolutionize the hospitality industry and create original and inspired experiences. Led by renowned restauranteur Hanif Harji, international entrepreneur Maher Murshed and restaurant industry veteran Terry Tsianos, ICON is behind Toronto's most exclusive lounge, F-Stop, and in partnership with INK Entertainment, owns and operates top dining destinations including: Weslodge Saloon, featuring contemporary American cuisine complimented by hand-crafted cocktails; Patria, focusing on the unique flavours and authentic ingredients of Spain; Citta, a rustic authentic Italian urban eatery located in CityPlace; and NAO Steakhouse, a contemporary modern steakhouse accented by spices and flavours of Asian-Pacific . ICON and INK also own and operate STORYS, a multi-level private event venue housed in a historical brick and beam building and home to the popular Byblos, a casually sophisticated Eastern Mediterranean restaurant featuring the traditional flavors of Lebanon, Turkey, Morocco, Israel and Greece. Every concept is executed with ICON's signature commitment to innovation and integrity in service and design. For more information, visit www.iconlegacy.ca

About Chef Masaharu Morimoto
Chef Masaharu Morimoto—known to millions as the star of Iron Chef and Iron Chef America—has garnered critical and popular acclaim for his seamless integration of Western and Japanese ingredients.  In 2001, Morimoto opened his first restaurant in Philadelphia, which was later followed by restaurants in Mexico City, New York City, Boca Raton, Chicago, Maui, South Beach, Philadelphia, Waikiki and Napa Valley.  Since 1998, Morimoto has competed on the Japanese television show, Iron Chef and also appears on the Food Network's Iron Chef America.  His first cookbook, Morimoto: The New Art of Japanese Cooking, won two IACP awards--in the "Chef's and Restaurants" category and the "First Book: The Julia Child Award"--and it was nominated for a James Beard Foundation Award. For more information about Masaharu Morimoto, please visit Facebook, Twitter or www.ironchefmorimoto.com

SOURCE ICON Legacy Hospitality

For further information: Kristen Hunter, Senior Publicist, INK Entertainment, Kristen@inkentertainment.com; For more information about Chef Morimoto, please contact: Baltz & Company, Sarah Abell, sabell@baltzco.com, Meredith Sidman, msidman@baltzco.com

RELATED LINKS
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