Famous Japanese chef offers special cherry blossom dinner

WAIKIKI (HawaiiNewsNow) - He's a legend in his own country. The Imperial Hotel Tokyo's Executive Grand Chef Kenichiro Tanaka, famous in his own right as a major culinary talent, became a household name in Japan after presiding over the 2005 wedding banquet of Her Imperial Highness Princess Nori, daughter of Emperor Akihito. Industry watchers say he forever changed the way hotel weddings are perceived by Japanese.

Now, Chef Tanaka is bringing his culinary skills to Hawaii, for a spectacular dinner that blends the flavors of the Far East with the robust tastes of the tropics. His cherry blossom-themed dinner will be at Halekulani on April 5, and will include seven courses plus canapés.

Why cherry blossoms? April is traditionally the month the trees bloom, and the flower holds special significance in Japan as a beautiful symbol of the fleeting nature of life. Chef Tanaka will import the ingredients from Japan, and will use the flowers in the dinner in ingredients such as cherry blossom paste and salt-cured cherry blossoms.

The event will be held on Friday, April 5 starts at 6:30 p.m. at La Mer, with a canapé and Champagne reception followed by dinner. Cost is $295.00 per guest, exclusive of tax and gratuity (limited seating). Guests will depart with a special gift: the Imperial Chef Mochizuki Original "Orchard Cake," available exclusively at Imperial Hotel Tokyo.

The menu is:

Roll of Smoked Salmon with Caviar
Canapé of Codfish Brandade and Crab
Mille-feuille of Foie Gras and Mango with "Muscat de Rivesaltes" Wine Jelly

Dinner Menu
Mango and Carrot Puree with Ginger Confit
Assortment of Seafood and Exotic Fruits with Cherry Flavor
Cream of White Asparagus Soup "Argenteuil Style"
Paupiette of Lobster Mousse Wrapped in Cabbage with Newberg Sauce
Roast Veal with Honey and Soy Sauce
Mille-feuille of Potato and Comté Cheese with Morel
Cherry Flower Sherbet on Rice Wine "Daiginjou" Granita
Grand Marnier Parfait with Orange Flavored Strawberry Sauce and Plum Jelly
Coffee and Petit Four

Beverages: Wine pairing with each course

For reservations, contact Halekulani at (808) 923-2311.

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