Marinated Norwegian diver scallops, Iberian pork collar barbecue–sampling the Oscars of gastronomy | Lifestyle.INQ

OCTOBER 27, 2022

KING crab atWorld Gourmet Summit

SINGAPORE—BRUNCH at The Capella was a major event at the World Gourmet Summit (WGS). Norwegian waters and Australian pastures were highlighted at the expansive ballroom of this luxury hotel in Sentosa. Beside the seafood served fresh on ice and in other reincarnations, there were carving stations for lamb and halibut.

The event gathered luminaries of the culinary world who provided a sampling of their cuisine in different stations set up throughout the venue.

All tables had been sold out at what could only be described as gastronomes’ heaven. It was dizzying trying to decide where to begin. An internal debate raged over whether to sample as much as was available or to be selective and follow gustatory instincts.

It was also a challenge to give the food full attention when some of the celebrated names of the culinary world were on the premises and the opportunity to meet them in person was a strong likelihood. This dilemma is understood by food enthusiasts who hold chefs, sommeliers and vintners in much the same regard as others would a rock star or an actor.

Marco Pierre White top-billed the Celebrity Chef Dinner one evening, featuring his signature dishes at the Grand Hyatt Singapore. The British restaurateur made history in 1994 when, at 33, he received three Michelin stars, becoming the youngest at that time to be accorded top distinction.


The golden boy of Russian cuisine, one Michelin-starred Anatoly Komm, had also come to serve up his brand of specially paired molecular food at another gala dinner. Masterchef Michel Sarran had flown in from Toulouse to share the story of his journey through a five-course meal at TungLok Group’s My Humble House.

The roster of award-winning luminaries was another feat for the organizers of the 16th annual event, who conceptualized an epicurean celebration that has drawn thousands of foodies, business travelers, corporate executives, social elite and hospitality professionals.


The center of the dining area held the wealth of oceans in a circular counter. Natural light, streaming overhead through the solar panel, cast an ethereal luminescence over delicate white flowers blooming from tall, slender branches. Beneath the floral arrangements was a variety of crustaceans, fish and shellfish in different preparations.

There was freshly chucked oysters on ice with Mignonette, lobster and avocado salad; sashimi and sushi Nordic style, and Norwegian salmon prepared in several ways as low temperature slow-cooked with caviar; crème fraiche and assorted condiments, oriental-style croquettes and as ceviche combined with prawn, mango and lemon.

CAPELLA’S Eric Guth, LifestyleAsia’s Cheryl Tiu, Lifestyle Asia editor in chief Anna Sobrepena, A La Carte Productions principal Peter Knipp, Capella general manager Robert Lagerway

It was the marinated Norwegian diver scallops with coriander, blue mussels and seafood salpicon that foiled the game plan to taste selected dishes only once. Fresh, plump meat rested in its open shell, like a glistening jewel difficult to resist. There were no regrets after popping a couple more into the mouth, displacing other desirable options in the limited space of a distending abdomen.

Displayed in one section beside small dishes with tasting portions was a whole cooked king crab still intact. It was surprising to see that the crab was even bigger than it already seemed on television shows. Sweet and tender portions were easily forked out and consumed slowly to linger over the pleasure of flavorful goodness.

Waitstaff walked around offering pass-around dishes of Norwegian White Halibut and Ble Mussel “Bake” and Confit of Norwegian Mackerel with Crushed Sun-Dried Potato and Lobster Essence.


TORONTO-BASED chef Susur Sobrepena, Michel Sarran, Tiu, chef Ken Lin of My Humble House

The food adventure came to an unexpected abbreviation while we were spooning a Tawa delicacy of three mix lamb grill, lamb chop, lamb mince and lamb liver onto a plate. New York-based Vikas Khanna was standing by the Indian cuisine of executive chef Manjunath Mural of The Song of India. The specialty restaurant was hosting the one-Michelin-starred chef, restaurateur, food writer, filmmaker, humanitarian and host of the television show “MasterChef India.” The boyish-looking founder of Cooking for Life graciously obliged a photo.

Two days later, it would be lunch at the host establishment serving his menu, but for that moment it was sufficient to meet “New York’s Hottest Chef,” who participates in gastronomic events around the world in support of different relief efforts and awareness campaigns.

Radars were also up to spot Paco Roncero from the two-Michelin star La Terraza del Casino in Madrid, Spain. The man, considered the highest representative of avant-garde cuisine in Madrid, was the guest of the hotel for the WGS.

Fortuitously, it was Anatoly Komm who was suddenly a few feet away. Moscow’s celebrity haute cuisine chef serves some of the most demanding and sophisticated clienteles in the capital who patronize his high-end restaurants. Ferran Adria, possibly the most celebrated chef today, publicly pronounced in the book “Coco” that Komm is among the world’s 100 best contemporary chefs.

Philippine presence

It was back to the tables after a brief exchange with grilled food that elevated barbecues to superstar status. There was smoky, done-just-right, apple mustard marinated Iberian pork collar, Guinness-marinated slow-cooked rump, and Norwegian salmon and prawn with sambal in banana leaf.

The stage was occupied by the pasta station, supervised by Capella’s executive chef Jakob Esko, a Swedish national. His collaboration with two Michelin-starred chef Dani Garcia of Malaga and Roncero headlined the Citibank gastronomic jam session.

Citibank is the presenting partner of the lifestyle event produced by A La Carte Productions, a subsidiary of Peter Knipp Holdings Pte Ltd. and supported by the Singapore Tourism Board. The festival, which began on April 23 ended on May 3 with a black-tie dinner, the 2eme Grand Capitre, Sabre d’Or dinner featuring Three Chinese Masters at the Conrad Centennial.

Lifestyle Asia is the exclusive Philippine publication partner, a distinction for the country recognized the organizers.

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