This year, we were lucky enough to be offered the opportunity to collaborate with Hachiro Ramen Bar for a Valentine's Day pop-up. Working in collaboration, the Vancouver Private Dining team constructed a 6-course Italian-Japanese fusion menu that boasted some serious flavor. After a successful sold-out event, we thought it was important to reflect on the experience.
Firstly, thank you to the beautiful couples who came out and enjoyed our food. Over the past few months, it's been challenging to connect with our customers due to our business's nature. Following COVID restrictions have taken a big bite out ofour clientele, and we viewed Valentine's Day as a return to form. Without our amazing customers who continue to support our new endeavors, we wouldn't bewhere we are today.
With smaller events like this, the pressure is always higher. Our team members stepped up and put their best foot forward, and we are so grateful for ourhighly dynamic and talented team.
Some of the menu highlights included our koji marinated branzino that we served whole and deboned in a technique called "reverse butterfly."
Also, our duck breast, which we aged in the hay. Wild right? The process is exciting. We sourced hay from a local farm and then steamed it for 20 minutes in a combioven to ensure it is sanitized. After that, the hay is dried until it's brittle, and we place the duck breast flesh side down on top of the hay. This way, the duck breast dries, and the flavor condenses. As the meat loses moisture, it soaks up the hay's flavor, giving it an earthy element. After aging the duck for six days, we pick the hay off, season it, and then grill itover open charcoal, where the fat cap renders down and becomes crispy in texture. We served this dish with a Japanese burdock salad and an umeboshi jus.
We were very proud our our menu and we can't wait to work with Hachiro Ramen Bar again this summer on another pop up!