Saturday, June 4, 2016

All Hands on Deck at The Tasting Room's 4-Hands Dinner

When two Michelin-starred chefs come together for one special dinner at The Tasting Room, it's all hands on deck...

The Tasting Room's Chef de Cuisine William Mahi collaborates with Chef Daniel Negreira, founder and CEO of Marina by DN named the best Spanish restaurant in China, for an exclusive and memorable dinner as part of The Tasting Room's on-going 4-Hands Dinner series. During the exclusive two-day dinner event last May 20 and 21, 2016, chefs William Mahi and Daniel Negreira draw inspiration from classic Spanish flavors reinterpreted with a creative and modern spin.

Inside The Tasting Room, the elegant interiors immediately tell you that dinner will be special (for more on The Tasting Room, see my previous post A Taste of The Tasting Room). Wine from Torres Wines were paired for the curated menu prepared by the award-winning chefs, with a specific vintage for each dish.

The dinner menu reflected a bold, progressive and modern gastronomic take on classic flavors, using the freshest and finest ingredients executed with contemporary culinary techniques. Each dish highlighted both originality and sharpness of flavors, pairing well with Torres Wines. 

Before dinner, The Tasting Room's very own award-winning mixologist, Nino Cruz (R), prepared his own inventive take on the classic Mojito (L). A refreshing cocktail with vibrant citrus notes, it's just what you need to open up your palate and set in the right groove for the elegant dinner.

The cocktail, a soothing Passionfruit Mojito garnished with an Absinthe Lollipop, set the tone for the evening's dinner as the first dish was served...

Chef Daniel Negreira's elegant Summer Expression, a cherry gazpacho with Brined Garlic, Cucumber, Green Emulsion, and Picota, recreates the vibrant flavors of the season using the freshest summer ingredients. The play on contrasting textures are as rich as the wide range of distinct notes combining in a seamless blend. The sweet and tart cherries add that unique summer vibe in this creative gazpacho, capped with a light yet flavorful foam.

Chef Daniel Negreira's equally elegant Spring Expression was then served next, a beautifully plated dish with a delicate Duck Liver Sandwich infused with Cocoa, Pine Jam, and Goji Berry with Bee Pollen. The medley of complex yet balanced flavors come together in another memorable dish, with the richness of the duck liver tempered by the tart notes of the goji berry and pine jam, capped by the subtle sweetness of the cocoa and bee pollen. The clean, fresh flavors of spring, the inspiration behind the dish, is perfectly captured and recreated in this dish, finished by the crisp notes of Champagne Ruinart Blanc de Blancs Magnum to cleanse the palate.

A glass of Penedes, Fransola Sauvignon Blanc by Torres was served, to be paired with the next dish...

Chef William Mahi served pure freshness on a plate, with Morels, Green Asparagus, Purple Asparagus, White Asparagus, Dry Caramelized Coulatelo, Cocques, and Fine Herbs. The simple and uncluttered flavors of the freshest vegetables are subtle yet sharp and distinct, each with a whisper of fresh sweetness. A sip of the Fransola Sauvugnon Blanc adds a layer of dry sweetness to the palate to complete the flavors.

Chef William Mahi then served his elaborate seafood and pork dish, a celebration of classic Spanish flavors, with Cod Fish, Chorizo de Bilbao, Guacamole, Chorizo Crisps, Razor Clams, Mussels, Basquaise Sphere, Roasted Garlic, Black Pig, and Pimientos Del Quitillos. The stark white plate served as the perfect palette to highlight the colorful dish, with flavors that matched the intensity of the bright colors.

The delicate notes of the fresh Cod Fish are released as it melts in your mouth...

...while the Chorizo and Black Pig's distinct sharp notes add even more flavors to the dish. Intricate and meticulously detailed, the dish reflects Chef William Mahi's personal culinary approach, blending both traditional and progressive flavors.

A glass of Rioja Gran Reserva, Castillo Ygay, Marques de Murrietta, with its deep, bold and full-bodied notes, complemented the elegant dish by Chef William Mahi.

Chef Daniel Negreira then served his expressive Winter Has Ended, with Beef Tenderloin, Figs, Raspberry Textures, Sunflower Sprouts, and Corn, a celebratory dish with bright flavors capturing the coming of fresh notes with a new season.

The juicy, savory and beefy notes contrast with the sharp and tart hints of the raspberry and figs. Paired with a glass of Penedes, Mas La Plana by Torres...perfect.

Chef Daniel Negreira then served his beautifully presented dessert, The Forest of Spices, with Chocolate, Truffle, Curry, Rosemary, and Wild Strawberry.

The seemingly contrasting notes weave in layers of distinct flavors, with the richness of chocolate kicked up a notch by the curry, rosemary and wild strawberry for another tapestry of vibrant flavors.

The dessert is paired with the Tokaji Aszu, with its bright golden hue delivering a fragrant nose and deep, rounded and sweet notes with hints of honey.

Finally, Chef William Mahi presented his elaborate dessert, an expression of diverse textures, with his White, Chilled, Dehydrated, Crunchy, and Brown Coffee Amaretto. The distinct texture and flavor of each component delivers different notes, but all come together as you play with the different ingredients for full flavors. It's the perfect dish to cap a memorable dinner at The Tasting Room.  

Chefs William Mahi and Daniel Negreira then come out of the kitchen making rounds at each table, greeted by a loud applause from the guests. At The Tasting Room, you can experience a world-class dining experience prepared by some of the world's most talented chefs. Every single day.

Chefs William Mahi and Daniel Negreira then invite guests to the kitchen, inside where the culinary magic and wizardry takes place, for another round of wine to end a memorable 4-Hands Dinner. It's all hands on deck for a perfect dinner with wine, made even more special, at The Tasting Room...

The Tasting Room is located at the Crown Tower in the new City of Dreams, D. Macapagal Boulevard, Paranaque City, Manila or call 800-8080 or email for reservations.

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