Gourmet Girl Graffiti, also known as Koufuku Graffiti, is a twelve episode slice-of-life anime, adapted by Shaft from a four-panel comic strip manga written and illustrated by Makoto Kawai. The anime was directed by Naoyuki Tatsuwa and Akiyuki Shinbo, and written by Mari Okada.
Gourmet Girl Graffiti focuses on Ryou Machiko, a middle school girl who has been living alone since the recent death of her grandmother. She cooks for herself, though she never quite feels that she is able to reproduce the same delicious results as her grandmother.
During that time, Ryou’s second cousin Kirin Morino starts to stay at Ryou’s place during weekends in order to attend the same cram school.
Also joining Ryou and Kirin is Shiina, a fellow student in Ryou’s class.
As ever with slice-of-life series, the focus is on the characters rather than any form of plot.
Ryou is a talented cook, though she doesn’t find satisfaction in the dishes she cooks. Fortunately, the arrival of Kirin helps her to realise that the key to great-tasting food is eating together with friends and family. This is a theme that runs throughout the show.
Kirin is Ryou’s second cousin, who is actually the same age despite her young appearance. She is very shy around adults, and during the series she worries about making new friends. Despite her petite appearance, Kirin has a big appetite and willy happily eat Ryou’s cooking.
Ryou’s friend Shiina is something of a loner. She tends to be the more level-headed of the three main characters, though she can be quirky. Also, if she is splashed by water, she falls ill for a week.
There are several other characters that appear over the course of the series, from Shiina’s family to Ryou’s neighbour. Each one has their own quirks, and it’s fun to watch Ryou and Kirin interact with them.
Though character interaction is generally a driving force in slice-of-life anime, the biggest draw of Gourmet Girl Graffiti is arguably the food.
Food porn is a phrase that accurately describes this series, and the characters tend to eat in a manner befitting such a phrase. They always describe the sensations they get from eating the food, and it is always rather sensual.
Watching Gourmet Girl Graffiti on an empty stomach is a bad idea. Still, it might inspire some aspiring cooks to tackle creating their own versions of the meals featured on the show.
Also, after preparing a dish, Ryou has a tendency to show it towards the camera, seemingly somewhat aware of the fourth wall.
A cute slice-of-life series that one should avoid watching on an empty stomach. The interactions between the characters are fun to watch, but the biggest draw is definitely the food.