No, I’m not exaggerating in the title. I was in an amazing villa, at an event where the chefs came from Japan, the foodie guests from all over the world, where we feasted on Osetra Caviar, popped the cork of a 1980’ Rioja and enjoyed the best Hungarian foie gras!
The venue and the surroundings were wonderful; the villa is located in the quieter inner part of Ibiza, in the wildly romantic Gertrudis de Fruitera region, in the mountains surrounding the little town where the tires of the rental car sometimes almost gave up on the steep dirt roads. (Later I learnt that there would have been a less steep road to get there but it’s not by accident that most of the cars in the parking lot of the villa were Range Rovers). An unnumbered gate and solid, white walls - if the gate hadn’t been open, I doubt I would have rung the bell (there was no bell obviously)... I was still quite doubtful...I should have, however, already sensed that the hosts live comfortably when someone asked for my car keys saying that he will park it for me and I can walk in. I walked in. As it was to be expected, the villa’s side facing the valley was even more beautiful than the one facing the road. Several pools, huge terraces, lots of lounge chairs and places to hang out are at the guests’ disposal to make them forget all about David Guetta’s tunes. Of course, there was a DJ to entertain us with lounge music and I noticed a few waiters as well, but, naturally, I was more interested in the kitchen, where next to the villa’s private chef, other famous chefs from Japan were busy working. Namely, Keiji Nakazawa, a well-known sushi chef and his assistant, as well as Kentaro Nakahara, the master of barbecuing the wagyu beef, together with his assistant. I’ve already been to the amazing yakiniku restaurant of the latter in Tokyo (and I wrote a detailed report about it). Throughout the evening, they prepared a wide range of excellent dishes. As an appetizer, for example, a few kilos of Osetra Caviars ended up in thick layers on baguette slices. But obviously they prepared some sushi, too, among other delicacies. In this case, I was more interested in the burger. Nakahara prepared it and it had a very important ingredient I was responsible for delivering from Hungary: premium quality, Hungarian foie gras.
It seemed like an interesting challenge to transport a few kilos of such a delicate ingredient, because, with the layover, it took me 8 hours to get there. I was lucky enough to find the very best supplier and their knowledge, experience and best practice helped me to deliver the foie gras in such a perfect condition. Obviously, it was the supplier of Hungarian fine dining restaurants that I procured the foie gras from, and I didn’t go with everyday products from the market, that are of questionable quality and freshness. Travelling through the whole continent, I couldn’t risk having to hand over a cheap, low quality and perished goose liver to the Japanese chefs. So it was the obvious decision to call Tamás Pellérdi (his website) who is an important promoter of the Hungarian foie gras in various places, such as Polish fine dining restaurants. The order didn’t cause him any problem, moreover, he even helped me out with the perfect solution for the transportation: a styrofoam box, a cardboard box and cooler blocks placed inside looked like a fail proof way, but, obviously, who knows what a luggage has to go through, especially in the hottest August weather. Thankfully, it turned out that everything went well, and I was relieved to see the undamaged box on the luggage belt. However, I didn’t dare opening it just yet. Later on, I could relax, as everything was perfect on the inside as well, even the temperature.
Nothing prevented Kentaro Nakahara from pan-roasting it in teriyaki sauce and putting it in the amazing burgers to wow all the guests. Obviously, it was a roaring success!
First on a video, then in pictures:
And the accompanying wine was excellent, too: a Rioja from 1970 (!) that scored 94 Parker points: López de Heredia - Viña Tondonia D.O. Ca. Rioja (more info here for example).
Thank you AisteLuxeat and Gourmand Pilgrim for the great organisation!