Wednesday, February 5, 2014

First course: Kaiseki returns to Hiroshi

Nadine Kam photos
Braised island tako was the second course served up during the inaugural New Age Kaiseki dinner at Hiroshi Eurasion Tapas. This was my favorite dish of the evening.

The kaiseki dinner has long been a draw at Hiroshi Eurasion Tapas, but the concept was put on hold after namesake chef Hiroshi Fukui's departure last August.

With the new year, the kaiseki dinner returned on Jan. 28, now showcasing the work of executive chef John Iha, exec sous chef Axelrod Colobang, and pastry chef Cherie Pascua, a former James Beard nominee.

The trio honed their skills in Hiroshi’s kitchen, and are moving beyond “Eurasion”— a fusion of European and Asian aesthetic, opening the menu to a world of flavors and ingredients. Even so, the menu is rooted in local meat, seafood and produce in the belief that helping local producers enriches the entire community in terms of sustainability and livelihood.

The nine-course "New Age Kaiseki" dinner was priced at $75 per person, with six-course wine pairing set at $25.

To get on the mailing list for future dinners, email

Here's what was on the inaugural menu:

 First course: Mekajiki carpaccio with sesame oil-chive relish, chili pepper water vinaigrette, micro greens and truffle oil. Accompanied by Birichino Malvasia Bianca.

Third course: Island papaya and seared foie gras with green papaya, sweet Thai chili and ginger reduction, topped with shiso chiffonade. Wine: Elio Perrone Bigaro.

Fourth course: “Surf and Turf” spoonful of oxtail chawanmushi and Kauai shrimp with Chinese five spice dust. The spoon was too shallow to get the creamy chawanmushi effect.

Fifth course: Crispy skin kampachi with saffron-kaffir lime broth, Manila clam and shiso chiffonade with Domaine Skouras “Zoe.” Hard to go wrong with kampachi.

Sixth course: “Mapo Pork & Pork Tofu” with Shinsato Farms Pork shoulder, local wild pig and Mrs. Cheng’s tofu, accompanied by CF Euro-Asian Riesling Medium Dry. This was plated more beautifully, but I toppled the greens to show the pork. Sprinkled over the tofu were crisp pork rinds.

Seventh course: Sous vide Kulana Beef with miso glaze, yukari, pickled wasabi tops, cauliflower puree, roasted vegetables and scallion pesto pasta. Wine: Chateau Fontanes “Coteaux du Languedoc.” I didn't get the juxtiposition of the many disparate elements, but they were fine individually.

Eighth course: Pepper-seared ahi chazuke with ikura, housemade tsukemono and truffled green tea broth. Comfort in a bowl.

Sweet course: Kaffir lime lemongrass Bavarois with coconut Anglaise, pineapple sorbet and Surinam Cherry streak.

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