When east meets west: A night of accented harmony at RACV Melbourne
The Sake Iron Master Class held on 29 August at RACV City Club (Melbourne) provided a rare opportunity to enjoy an innovative five-course degustation dinner using the finest produce with nine accompanying premium sake.
The most conservative way to pair food with wine, is to choose a wine from the same origin as the dish. But with these four gentlemen, sake and wine sommelier Masahiko Iga, celebrity chef Ikuei Arakane (Kinsan), RACV’s Executive Chef Mark Normoyle and Club Sommelier Christian Maier, things will only be unexpectedly interesting and heavenly delicious.
Ikuei Arakane, Mark Normoyle, Christian Maier and Masahiko Iga (from left to right)
Sake is booming in Australia yet it was the humble supporting role of that night. The mastermind of the event, Kinsan, would like to experiment the possibilities of sake-pairing – for starter, pair sake with western food for Australians. The objective was to convey the message that sake is such a versatile drink which is good on its own, perfect with Japanese cuisine but also a great match with non-Japanese cuisine! In fact, Mark designed the degustation menu first and Masahiko paired sake based on the flavour profiles of the dishes after.
DASSAI ‘Migaki Niwari-Sanbu’ Junmai Daiginjo
DASSAI ‘50’ Junmai Daiginjo
DEWAZAKURA ‘Ouka-Ginjo’ Ginjo
OKUHARIMA ‘Shimomura’ Junmai Ginjo
KUHEIJI ‘Kudanno Yamada’ Junmai Ginjo
MYOKO ‘Koshino Setsugetsuka’ Junmai Ginjo
BENTEN MUSUME ‘Funeshibori Nakadare’ Junmai
TENGUMAI ‘Yamahai Jikomi’ Junmai
HANAHATO ‘Shiori’ Junmai
Avocado macaron, eggplant mousse (right)
paired with DASSAI ‘Migaki Niwari-Sanbu’ Junmai Daiginjo
Bean curd custard, textures of mushroom (left)
paired with DASSAI ‘50’ Junmai Daiginjo
Cured king fish cone, sevruga pearls (left)
paired with DEWAZAKURA ‘Ouka-Ginjo’ Ginjo
Spanner crab bisque, rouille, soft shell crisp (right)
paired with the OKUHARIMA ‘Shimomura’ Junmai Ginjo
Duck liver pate, sour cherry brioche
paired with the KUHEIJI ‘Kudanno Yamada’ Junmai Ginjo
Quail breast roast, tangy piperade
paired with MYOKO ‘Koshino Setsugetsuka’ Junmai Ginjo
p.s. these two tastings were garnished by four "chef's little helpers"
Pork sausage roll, plum ketchup (right)
paired with BENTEN MUSUME ‘Funeshibori Nakadare’ Junmai
Smoked wagyu sirloin, caper salsa (left)
paired with TENGUMAI ‘Yamahai Jikomi’ Junmai
Chilled melon sandwich, cream cheese and Strawberry pie, liquorice gelato
paired with HANAHATO ‘Shiori’ Junmai
All guests enjoyed their meal while flipping through the “lecture notes” prepared by Masahiko. Q & A section of course, what we didn’t expect was quiz time! We were tested on the things we have learnt and attentive students who got all the answers correct were awarded with a bottle of SATONOHOMARE ‘Hiire’ Junmai Ginjo!
Sake event is the best way to expand your sake horizons because you can savour nice food and sake while having a sake lecture.
So, stay tuned!
[ Behind Scenes ]
The event was completely booked out with 80 guests on the waiting list. Not to mention the honour to dine with two very special guests, Consul-General Mr. Hidenobu Sobashima and Mr. Murray McLean OAM, the former Australian Ambassador to Japan.
It was a night of new insights and enjoyment. Rather than going head to head with one another, each and every guest was wonderstruck how the occident cuisine harmonised with the orient alcohol. Masahiko and Christian, Mark and Kinsan were supporting each other to deliver the best experience to all the guests. Food and sake were divine but the friendship and understanding between Australia and Japan that were enhanced that night are just priceless.
Masahiko Iga, Mark Normoyle, Ikuei Arakane, Christian Maier, RACV Club
You can download your copy of The Sake Experience Booklet - Special edition for RACV Club here