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381 A Taste That Starts From Zero

 "As expected, it's open. I know Boss Yuan won't break his word." A customer said excitedly while holding the number ticket in the hand.

"Nothing to feel strange about. The reason why Compass is Compass is that he always keeps his word." Wu Hai shrugged and then walked into the restaurant as if he was accustomed to the situation.

"Everybody, the first twenty customers can come on in." Zhou Jia greeted the customers with a smile.

"Terrific. Again, we can eat Boss Yuan's breakfast." The two animation-addicted girls said with one accord.

"Hi, long time no see." As soon as Yin Ya entered the restaurant, she greeted Yuan Zhou.

"Hi, Boss Yuan. Here I am again." Tang Xi also waved her hand to Yuan Zhou with a cute expression.

"Boss Yuan, you are finally back. Even my wallet can't wait longer." A customer at the side couldn't help joking.

"Um. Morning." After a nod, Yuan Zhou first greeted and then continued saying, "A new dish, Spring Water Mantou, will be provided today."

"Wow! ...We are so lucky to be able to eat a new dish once you are back," Yin Ya said smilingly.

"We are truly lucky. Get a serving for me." The frank and honest Wu Hai said directly while stroking his mustaches.

"Get one for me first." Once Wu Hai started, other customers instantly reacted. It was breakfast and there were only 100 servings.

"Me, too." Yin Ya sat down and said to Yuan Zhou.

"Alright. One moment, please." Yuan Zhou nodded his head and then took the verdant food steamer off from the steaming pot and put them at the place where Zhou Jia served the dishes one by one.

"Everybody, please pay first according to prices on the menu. The dishes are to be served right away." Zhou Jia said at the right moment.

"Here is your dish." Yuan Zhou carried it to Yin Ya straightforwardly as usual.

"Thank you." Yin Ya revealed a blush on her white-skinned face.

"Tsk-tsk. No wonder even the Mantou is pink today." Wu Hai said at the side with a vaguely meaningful gaze.

"This color is so beautiful. Boss Yuan is so awesome. It's surprisingly such a beautiful pink Mantou." The anime-addicted girl supported her head with her two hands and said admiringly while looking at the cute and plump Mantou in front of her.

"Huh? Pink Mantou?" Yin Ya uncovered the food steamer curiously.

Inside of the food steamer indeed lay six pink little Mantous. Different from the previous Thousand Layer Mantou, the little Mantou was round and looked plump. In contrast with the verdant bamboo food steamer outside, they looked both lovable and beautiful.

The smooth skin of the Mantous seemed to emit a pink light.

"What a strange color! But it's quite good-looking, like a work of art." Yin Ya poked it curiously.

When the Mantou was poked inward, however, it soon returned to normal, leaving a small indent on the smooth skin.

"What exactly is the taste of the Mantou that is like a work of art?" Yin Ya became quite curious.

The animation-addicted girl was more curious and had started to gulp down half of a Mantou impatiently. The part where she bit recovered to 80% of its original state in just a little while.

Now people could clearly see the color inside of the Mantou was also cherry pink. The many holes from air bubbles didn't look terrible at all. Instead, it appeared neat and beautiful and emitted faint fragrance of wheat.

"Slurp Slurp". As soon as she ate the Mantou, a faint unknown fragrance filled the mouth. After chewing, the sweet and fragrant smell diffused gradually as if it had many different layers. If not for the refreshing chewiness in the mouth, she would have thought she was eating a flower with a faint fragrance.

The Mantou was extremely soft and yet meanwhile chewy. The two different textures plus the intrinsic wheat fragrance of the flour and the sweet taste of the spring water was so delicious that the two girls couldn't help praising it again and again with words that others couldn't understand.

"This is soooo delicious! I feel Boss Yuan is soooo awesome every time. The dishes are both beautiful and tasty." After the girl ate half Mantou, she immediately praised and then continued eating the other half.

The texture of this half Mantou was exactly the same as that of the other half just now. The soft dough carried some wheat fragrance and the intrinsic sweetness of the spring water. While chewing, it carried a little chewiness, which made people unable to stop.

After eating up three Mantous, the girl with a long hair and round face found something wrong.

"Do you think there's something wrong with the Mantou?" A girl pulled the other and asked her.

"I think so, too." The other girl nodded her head while chewing the Mantou in her mouth.

"What is it?" The girl that asked didn't stop at all. She took another Mantou and started to stuff it into her mouth.

Of course, the name of Sakura Mantou was made up by themselves. In their opinion, the Mantou was like a large flower petal of the Sakura.

"I got it." Once the Mantou entered her mouth, the girl instantly said with a lisp.

"What?" The other girl turned her head and looked at her friend with half a Mantou dangling from his mouth, being reluctant to put it down.

"It's like whenever we eat the next Mantou, it feels like we haven't eaten it before. Although the taste is the same, it's very bland at the beginning as if we are experiencing the delicacy of the Mantou once again every time." The girl's explanations were in a mess, but luckily somebody understood it.

"You're right. It's indeed like that." Yin Ya echoed.

"Every time we eat the next Mantou, it's quite refreshing in the mouth as if we were eating it for the first time and experiencing the pleasant feeling again. That's it." Wu Hai said conclusively while stroking his small mustaches.

"Yes, right, that's right. That's the feeling." The girl nodded her head earnestly and agreed to him.

"When we eat the Mantou to the end, it's like we have drunk the luscious spring water which makes us feel refreshed. When we eat the next one, it's a new taste again." While saying that, Wu Hai was a little dumbfounded, appearing as if he had thought of something.

"I got it now." Wu Hai suddenly jumped off the chair and prepared to run. But just within several steps, he went back again, took the Mantou and stuffed it into his mouth. Having chewed up with several gulps, he ran out of the restaurant.

"The inspiration of an artist is really like a thunder." Yuan Zhou sighed with emotion inwardly.

Because of its special texture, the Spring Water Mantou was extraordinarily popular. Customers that came for breakfast ate it occasionally along with soybean milk or fruit juice and were playing with it happily like kids.

The breakfast time lasting one hour passed very soon. As soon as it ended, Yuan Zhou received a call before he went to have a rest.

"Ding Ling Ling, Ding Ling Ling"

"Hello." Yuan Zhou looked at the unknown number and answered the phone.

"Hello, Master Yuan. This is Zhou Shijie, the chairman of China Chefs' Alliance. Three days later, we'll hold the cooking activity of those precious ingredients and you'll have 19 ingredients at your disposal." It was the principal judge, Zhou Shijie, that day.

"Ok. I got it." Yuan Zhou became solemn subconsciously.

"By convention, you can choose any other master that took part in the contest that day to be your assistant and his restaurant to be the cooking place." Zhou Shijie was very serious and earnest when he talked about the proper business.

Right after that, however, he smiled and said, "Of course. They are very happy to be your assistant and for their restaurants being chosen as the kitchen."

The words made Yuan Zhou frown. What a joke! Who was Yuan Zhou? He was a person who had quite an obsession. He wouldn't even allow others to enter his restaurant. How was it possible that he would allow other to be his assistant?

Before Yuan Zhou found an excuse to refuse him, Zhou Shijie continued to say, "But that is just a convention. You can actually choose whoever you like. Even if it's Chu Xiao, he has to come to help. But whether or not you can suppress him... you have to count on yourself."

The words obviously carried some expectancy and teasing. After all, Chu Xiao was quite well-known for his bad temper.

Having paused a while, Yuan Zhou thought of a method to refuse and then he said, "..."