Once again, the Hawaii Food & Wine Festival’s most lavish event, the Halekulani Culinary Masters Series, featured five top chefs from around the globe preparing lavish, indulgent dishes with caviar, foie gras, lobster, Wagyu beer and gold (yes, gold) that were paired with the finest wines.
Friday’s gala at the Halekulani, a $1,000 a head affair, began with mixologists, Tony About-Ganim and Francesco Lafranconi pouring cocktails in the courtyard. The meal then moved inside with dishes prepared by chefs Janice Wong of Singapore’s 2am:dessertbar; Halekulani’s Vikram Garg; Michael Ginor of Hudson Valley Foie Gras; Japan’s Toshiya Konno of Ukai Co.; and top San Francisco-based chef Michael Mina.
Modern Honolulu mixologist Tony Abou-Ganim with his featured cocktail, “A Moment in Time” using Absolut Elyx vodka, Hartley & Gibson Amontillado Sherry, Cocchi Americano, orange bitters and orange oil.
Francesco Lafranconi of Southern Wine & Spirits of Nevada served up a Diamond Head fizz using Atlantico Platino rum, Cocchi Americano, fresh pineapple, lime and grapefruit juices, flour of Amontillado sherry, Perrier Jouet Grand Brut, coconut water and finished with fleur de sel.
Everyone wanted to take photos with chefs Alan Wong and Roy Yamaguchi, even Janice Wong, chef at 2am:dessertbar in Singapore.
Governor David Ige and his wife Dawn were in attendance.
Halekulani’s ballroom was beautifully decorated for the night’s festivities.
The wine glasses were polished and ready for service.
The menu featured five luxurious ingredients, caviar, foie gras, Maine lobster, wagyu beef and gold.
The first course was an oscietra caviar with Hamakua mushroom panna cotta paired with a NV Varnier-Fanniere Brut Grand Cru, Avize, a Champagne from France. Vikram Garg, Halekulani Hotel
The second course of Hudson Valley foie gras with caramelized white chocolate, macadamia nuts, cherry and brioche paired with a 2013 Morlet Family Vineyards Chardonnay Coup de Coeur from Sonoma County, California. Michael Ginor, Hudson Valley Foie Gras, New York.
Third course, chilled Maine lobster with hearts of palm, local avocado, charred Maui pineapple and vanilla essence paired with a 2007 La Viarte Bianco delle Venezie ‘Sium’ from Friuli, Italy. Michael Mina, Mina Group, San Francisco.
Fourth course, Wagyu sirloin with roasted Maui onion, wasabi scented red win and soy jus paied with a 2012 Blankiet Estate ‘Rve Droite’ Napa Valley and 2009 Chateau Gombaude-Guillot from Pomerol, France. Toshiya Kanno, Ukai Co. Ltd., Japan. Photo courtesy of Dane Nakama, Hawaii Food & Wine Festival
Final course, plum cassis 23K gold cake paired with a Cocchi carolo chinato from Piedmont, Italy. Janice Wong, 2am:dessertbar, Singapore.
Adam Richman and chef Sang Yoon were spotted at the Masters Gala.