The journey of TORI-Q® that started off from a small takoyaki stand
IT BEGAN WITH AN IDEA
Yohei Takeda always had the dream of opening a restaurant, a Japanese-style spaghetti restaurant, to be specific. In 1993, when he was 25, he decided that he wanted to make it happen and saved up his money while working as a salesperson to open his restaurant. However, at the time, it was costly to open a restaurant in Japan. Knowing that he couldn't save up a considerable amount, he struggled to find a way to make his dream come true.
An unexpected idea came by when he talked about this goal to his employer back then, who turned out to be doing some business between Japan and Singapore during that exact period. Half-jokingly, his employer suggested the idea of opening a takoyaki stand in Singapore since Japanese food was slowly gaining popularity then. At the time, Singapore was still in the earlier stage of its development, and the economy wasn't as vibrant as it is now. However, Yohei Takeda saw this as an opportunity and decided to bet his life on Asia's development, specifically Singapore.
STARTING FROM SCRATCH
Armed with a strong passion for high-quality food, Yohei Takeda left his native Japan for Singapore to pursue his dreams of introducing Japanese Takoyaki to Singaporeans under Takopachi. During that time, in 1994, he was the only person with the foresight and courage to look beyond convention and believe that takoyaki could be popular outside of Japan.
Everyone else had felt that takoyaki was an exclusively-Japanese snack that could not be accepted by people from other cultures and with different tastes. However, trusting his instinct and vision, Yohei took his big step out and became the pioneer of takoyaki outside of Japan. Acquiring a pushcart at Clark Quay, he took his first step towards introducing the Takopachi blend of takoyaki to the rest of the world and has never looked back since.
A turning point came when he opened a temporary Takopachi® store at Takashimaya S.C. in the fourth year. It was quite a success, and a few months later, it turned into a permanent store. Despite the small boom that it created, Yohei knew that he wanted to target a broader consumer base. He decided that he wanted to sell food that people could enjoy with rice since rice is a staple food for so many people. And this is how he came to the idea for TORI-Q®.
In 2000, TORI-Q® proudly launched its first outlet in one of the most famous shopping districts, inside Takashimaya Shopping Centre. Today, we have more than 20 outlets, covering Singapore's busiest and trendiest areas. We continue to move into broader areas and neighbourhoods to serve the best yakitori to everyone in Singapore.
TORI-Q® FOR SINGAPORE
Since its opening, TORI-Q® has always been about Singaporeans and the people in Singapore. We serve continuously, hoping that people will recognise TORI-Q® as a Singapore specialty while still being Japanese food. From our original yakitori sauce recipe to the variety of food we offer, it has always been targeted towards our valued guests in Singapore. As a homegrown brand, while serving the best affordable, quick and convenient meals to our customers, we have grown with the local community since the start, and we aim to continue to do so.
Opening of the first Takoyaki stand, Takopachi® at Clark Quay.