Honolulu, June 22, 2009 – Time: 11:00 am – Temperature: 88 degrees – life is beautiful…
That means it’s summer time. In Honolulu I feel very much like in Marseille my first home town in Provence. Even if the temperature is above 90 degrees you always feel a breeze from the ocean (or the sea) and you are very comfortable.
It’s why we call Hawaii a Paradise. We don’t suffer in Paradise.
I do not take Hawaii for granted, especially during this critical time. What a wonderful place to be when the whole world is in trouble. The stock market is down? Look at the ocean. You lost 35% of your 401K? Smell the plumeria flowers. Your bank cut your credit? Taste the 1st mango of the season.
Do not think that we are not working very hard here…we are. Especially at Chef Mavro Restaurant when we change the menu for the new season. But we have so much fun that I wonder if work is the right word.
If you are already in Hawaii; don’t move…if you’re not; don’t wait… we are ready for you.
I guess now you want to know about our new Summer Menu…
Lychees from the Big Island:
With Kevin Chong Chef de Cuisine and the kitchen team, we worked on the new sautéed foie gras with lychee, lemongrass, opal basil, green apple. It was going to be fantastic, we could not fail. So very confident; we put everything together. Looked beautiful…great; what about the taste? NOTHING??? We had first deconstructed the whole dish, the flavors were separated and fighting each other. We almost gave up when we decided to mix the ingredients together…et voila!
Suddenly the whole garnish became an explosion of flavors. The combination accents perfectly the foie gras.
We all learned again a lesson. To sacrifice to the trend of the presentation we forgot about the flavors. I always remember what one of my masters told me, “don’t worry, if it tastes good it looks good.”
Todd Ashline our sommelier did an advance selection of 5 wines, all were foie gras friendly. The wine pairing committee picked up a Sauternes from the Château Gravas. Personally I am not a fan of Sauternes with foie gras but “if you don’t try you don’t know.” Perhaps because the lemongrass, or the lychee, or the basil, or everything together… the match is perfect.
“Big Wave” Tomatoes:
Our “tomato queen” Jeannie drives us nuts. When it’s windy…no tomatoes. It’s raining…no tomatoes. It’s too cold…no tomatoes. This is the inconvenience to grow anything only from the soil and the sun.
But come the summer time, and… wow! The result makes us forget about the frustration and we decided to create a dish around the tomatoes.
The keahole confit sablefish, big wave tomato-ogo sauce, fines herb emulsion, sablefish cracklings…best recipe in the world baby! Do not expect a chef to be humble, to me a chef too humble is suspicious. The wine, a rosé from Chinon (cabernet franc) the Rafflault (rose petals, raspberry, cherry with a hint of mint).
Hirabara summer baby greens:
The cheese course is always a good excuse to eat a salad. Hirabara farm in Kamuela grows the best baby lettuces in the State. The challenge is not to spoil them with the wrong vinaigrette. Forget about blue cheese dressing, 1000 island,
Caesar etc…extra virgin olive oil, sherry vinegar, shallot, salt and pepper is enough. The cheese better to be good, no reason to worry it is good. Honokaa fresh goat cheese mousse flavored with lemon zest and chives, served with kumquats, red and yellow beets. (The world is divided in two categories the ones love beets and the ones don’t). We have the solution to this issue. We simmer the beets in vinegar to remove the aggressive earthy taste and it’s a miracle, everybody love beets. Some extra virgin olive oil, bread croutons and you are perfectly ready for dessert. The Vouvray Domaine Huet “Le Mont Sec” selected was not a surprise. With green apple, pear and tea aroma it was made to be paired with fresh goat cheese.
Sorry I always get very excited about our new menu; I hope I am not too long.
If you want to know more, please check on our web site www.chefmavro.com. You will learn about the day boat catch wrapped in brick, our new lamb with eggplant dumpling etc…
Keep in touch by following me in TWITTER follow @chefmavro and right here on our BLOG…
To feasts & friends,