What is Hikaru Nakamura's Favorite Food?

What is Hikaru Nakamura's Favorite Food?

| 42 | Fun & Trivia recently sent an e-mail survey to its titled players to find out their preferences on a wide variety of subjects, including blitz chess, music, television, schedules, food, and drinks.

Some 71 chess masters filled out the survey, including the current world-number-four GM Hikaru Nakamura. 

Nakamura and the other masters answered up to 27 questions about their favorite things. Nakamura's favorite food? You'll have to read below to find out.

So what were the most interesting results? Enjoy a guided tour.

Let us know your own favorites on Facebook and in the comments.

First things first: how do the best players on prefer on

Surprisingly in today’s multi-tasking world, most titled player respondents preferred to play online in silence — though it was close.

Nakamura, despite being a symbol of the game's digital age, chooses to play without music or television in the background.

Those who did choose to listen to music or TV had a wide range of preferences. While most preferred modern music, CM James Coleman admitted a preference for "cheesy 80s pop."

Could that explain why the candidate master is "never gonna give up" on tough positions?

Even those who didn’t like playing with music in the background still provided some interesting musical selections when away from the board.

Hikaru Nakamura said he preferred the classical and jazz genres, while other masters like pop and rock. NM Gaston Andretta of Florida took the classy route in expressing a love for opera, the only master to do so on the survey. 

The responding masters reported a huge variety of favorite television and movies to watch outside of chess. Game of Thrones was the most popular response, and was also Nakamura's favorite TV show. 

What kind of set-up does the average master use to play online?

While you might picture the masters using multiple gigantic computer monitors like stock day traders, most actually play from a laptop — albeit (typically) one with a large screen.

Nakamura also plays with a large laptop screen.  

When do the masters like to play? Results skewed toward the evenings and late nights, which received many more votes than mornings and afternoons. The plurality, though, had no clear preference on time of day to play.

The majority of masters are night people, 40 points ahead of the early birds.

Nakamura said he most liked to play in the afternoons, and did not consider himself either a night or a morning person.

Nearly 60 percent of responding titled players say they usually go to bed after midnight, and just short of one-quarter usually sleep after 2 a.m. local time.

Three-fifths of the players said they typically get seven hours or less of sleep.

Nakamura reported a bedtime of midnight, and said he usually gets about seven hours of sleep. 

Maybe it's all those long blitz chess sessions that push bedtimes late?

Not usually. The majority of players preferred short sessions, one hour or less.

Sometimes, though, a marathon is in order. 

Nearly 40 percent of respondents indicated they had played monster online chess sessions of six hours or more.

Nakamura, of course, was part of those two-fifths who had played for six hours or more. 

As with the music conundrum, it was a close race for the question of whether to eat or drink while playing online at

Seven titled players reported enjoying alcoholic beverages while playing online.

In the question of coffee vs. tea, java was the clear winner, with 44 percent choosing it as their favorite, 28 points ahead of tea.

Away from the chessboard, pizza, pasta, hamburgers, and sushi were all popular choices. Many titled players reported various sodas as their favorite drinks, and FM Thomas Gempe expressed a preference for sugar-free limeade. 

So what was Hikaru Nakamura’s favorite food, as promised by the headline? Sushi and pasta, with some white wine to wash it down.

Finally, we asked the masters to name the greatest human blitz chess player ever, living or dead. 

The vote was a runaway. Hikaru Nakamura received an astonishing 24 votes, 15 more than the second-place Bobby Fischer, who had nine votes.

Nakamura himself was modest and voted for Mikhail Tal, who finished tied for third place with six votes along with Magnus Carlsen and Garry Kasparov.

What are your food, drink, music, and blitz chess preferences? Let us know in the comment section.

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