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New York, Look Out - Here Comes Hawai'i!

Keahole Lobster by Chef Matsubara
Keahole Lobster by Chef Matsubara
Camilla Carboni

It really is quite fantastic to watch as cultured Hawaiian cuisine makes its mark on the map, showcasing the bounty of paradise and the abundance of fresh fish and, in doing so, inspiring a renewed sense of Hawaiian dining itself.

Yes we have Roy’s, Alan Wong’s and Morimoto, but it has evolved from there. People are becoming increasingly curious about the unusual foods and flavors our chefs combine to create the Hawaiian delicacies of today. Such curious people include those at the James Beard Foundation in New York, which, home to the legend of America cooking himself, is quite simple saying something.

New York, look out – here comes Hawai'i – in its refined, playful, creative and sensory seductive form. This Wednesday night, September 14th, 2011, Chef Jon Matsubara, Chef Colin Hazama and Chef Darren Demaya take on the 'Big Apple', preparing a 5 course food and wine experience for the Taste of Hawai'i event at the James Beard Foundation.

What’s on the menu?

A colorful and delectable taste of tender butterfish, succulent lobster and petite filet, with a masterful presentation that rivals the very beauty of Hawaiian paradise.

To start, a sweet and crisp Riesling or a tropical Mai Tai set the mood for a culinary adventure, followed by a three part appetizer consisting of superbly prepared abalone, Ahi poke and a pickled salad. Plated next is the Keahole lobster dish by Chef Matsubara that is subtly dressed with gingery-grapefruit mustard, palm hearts and the vivid greens of paradise, and served alongside a vintage bubbling Rose´. But seafood heaven has only just begun, and Chef Hazama’s poached butterfish in a light buttermilk froth is equally flavorsome, presented atop a symmetrical drizzle of Cabernet-poi reduction, enjoyed with Alii mushrooms and a taste of taro, and perfectly paired with a buttery chardonnay as smooth as the island catch itself. Moving on to red, Chef Demaya’s steak sensation sits amidst a rich and dreamy foie-gras truffle and lingers longer than its drier liquid pairing counterpart. Not yet last or least, the island inspired panna cotta dessert merges crystallized ginger, tart pineapple, sweet passion fruit and dark Wailua chocolate and is followed by the bittersweet sip of Kona Peaberry coffee and the finishing white and milk chocolate bite-sized truffles.

Exotic, vibrant and eclectic, that’s Hawai'i in a nutshell.

For more information visit the James Beard House event page at:

To taste the creations of the three Chefs on O’ahu:

Visit Jon Matsubara at Azure Restaurant, Colin Hazama at Sheraton Waikiki, and Darren Damaya at Kai Market.

Aloha New York!


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