Soma Yukihara grows up cooking in Yukihira Family Restaurant, which is owned by his family and is located in a less attractive side of town. The 15-year-old Soma wants to be a better chef than his father, Joshiro Yukihira. So the teen hones his skills day in and day out. Then, his father suddenly decides to enroll Soma in a classy culinary school, Totsuki Saryo Culinary Institute, a place that prides itself on a 10 percent graduation rate. Soma does not really want to attend Totsuki, so can he succeed?
As Food Wars!: Shokugeki No Soma, Vol. 16 (Chapters 128 to 136; entitled Captured Queen) opens, the Totsuki Saryo Culinary Institute School Festival (also known, as “The Moon Festival”) continues. Here, Totsuki students can set up booths and sell food to the public. That is where Yukihara plans to challenge Terunori Kuga, one of the vaunted students of the Council of Ten Chairs.
However, it is Day 4 of the five-day festival, and Soma has to finally win a day if he wants to get out of the red in terms of sales and if he wants to stay in school. Then, Azami Nakiri returns and only Soma can save the “captured queen.”
THE LOWDOWN: The Food Wars! manga is at its best when it depicts cooking competitions. Saying that, there was always going to be a volume that was going to make a lie of me.
Food Wars!: Shokugeki No Soma Volume 16 is that volume. Creators Yuto Tsukuda and Shun Saeki spit manga-storytelling fire with this tale of family reunion slash disharmony slash school revolution. Vol. 16 still offers some cooking competition, but courtly intrigue wins the day and shows that Food Wars! is not just a foodie manga. It can serve up the melodrama as well as any manga.
I READS YOU RECOMMENDS: Readers hungry for good manga will want the Shonen Jump Advanced title, Food Wars!: Shokugeki No Soma.