Taste Of Oklahoma: Chef King Dey's International Addition To Oklahoma City

With cooking experience from all over the world, Chef King Dey has brought his talents to downtown Oklahoma City.

Thursday, March 28th 2024, 10:01 am

By: News 9


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Nestled along Robinson Avenue between Northwest 5th and 6th Streets in downtown Oklahoma City, JK by Chef King is taking Japanese cooking and reinventing it.

Chef King Dey has been on several Food Network competitions, and places extra emphasis on grabbing his patrons' attention with his food.

King said he has a knack for taking a very American thing, and seeing how he can make it with ingredients from Asia.

"We wanted to create an ambiance like something people have never seen before," Dey said. " If you look around, even from our bathroom to all the walls, everything is Versace wallpaper, our spoons, forks, everything is Versace. We really wanted to go over the top."

When you walk into JK by Chef King, one of the first things that grabs your attention is the bright and loud decor, going so far as to even print your face onto a cocktail.

Dey said he has been cooking for over 30 years.

"Originally from India, grew up in London and moved here ten years ago back to the U.S.," Dey said. I have been [cooking] all my life, almost 30 years."

Dey has mastered authentic Indian and French cuisine, and has also traveled all over Asia to get a better foundation for Pan-Asian cuisine.

"I started coming up with ideas," Dey said. "How can I incorporate those Indian spices into French or Asian cuisine? How can I make it light instead of a heavy Indian gravy? Things like that?

Describing JK by Chef King as a modern Japanese restaurant, the restaurant opened in September, 2023. Dey said the name comes from he and his business partner's names: Josh and King.

As far as how successful this venture has been, Dey said the response from the community has been "massive."

"We've had a massive response, overbooked on almost every weekend," Dey said. "It's amazing, people come here and they are just blown away with the food, the flavor, the texture."

Dey says high-quality ingredients are his primary focus, so he gets all his fresh fish from Japan.

One of Dey's favorite dishes, he said, is lobster tacos, served cold.

"Fry the shell to give [it] the crispy texture, that's the first unique thing it starts with," Dey said. "Taco is a tortilla, grilled, hot, this is totally opposite."

Canadian blue lobster, poached and mixed with chives, Dey Said, mixes perfectly with the crunchy tortilla shell.

"We try to give the taste of the world to Oklahoma City," Dey said. "Don't send something to the guest if you think it's not 'wow,' so every single guest has to be wowed with every single dish you create."

In his time abroad, Dey once earned the Best New Restaurant in London award, and now he loves Oklahoma City and hopes Oklahoma City loves him.

"People ask me that after traveling all over the world...'why Oklahoma City?' and I always reply to them: 'why not Oklahoma City?" Dey said. I've never been to a city where the people are so positive to be honest with you, they are so nice, everyone is so nice. Everyone is happy."

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