This is the CR8 concept I have been wanting to do for over 5 years. My fascination with liquid as a flavor catalyst constantly reminded me of a direction that I could explore in great detail. Using vapor, solid and liquid as conceptual starting points and incorporating them their properties to create a dinner scenario took me many years.
Here is an excerpt from my notes: “When it comes to taste, liquid acts differently on the palate than solid food. Chewing food becomes a process by which flavors are expelled and discovered in stages as they are released by the teeth. Liquids immediately cover the entire tongue, which in turn activates all taste buds and it’s crevices giving instantaneous flavor delivery. This seems to be a more powerful way to taste as it requires less use of facial muscles, And with this, additional brain activity which stays in a state of “waiting” to see what the food tastes like. This also brings in a subconscious element of expectation and wonder, which deters from the purity of taste and experiencing flavor”. Roberto Cortez
The dining scenario was to rest on a virtual magenta pool of light created by an incredible designer named Avelino Sotelo!
The beautifully designed table by Rob Hendrickson of One Works Seattle never ceases to amaze.
The dining room consisted of a blue cloud of light above the diners by Yuri Kinoshita.
Diners in the dark.
This CR8 was additionally exceptional for 2 reasons. One, a collaboration with the renown cocktail specialist, Matthew Biancaniello. What better person to explore aqueous dining possibilities than him! We previously did a collaboration together under the flag of CR8 The Art Of in Los Angeles a few years ago. I quickly realized then, that Matt and I have a very similar perspective on dining. The endless possibilities where taste can go is road we both want to travel.
The Team was Yuri Kinoshita, Matthew Biancaniello, Me, Avelino Sotelo and Rob Hendrickson.
We were incredibly fortunate to find and incredible space at 1461 Elliott Ave. W. (And it is for lease!). Becky will be happy to take care of you! 206-284-7004.
Avelino Sotelo, an incredibly talented human!
Toshi Asai takes care of every detail.
Nicholas Furrow waits his turn in the many tasks needed to activate the event. He was great, thanks Nick!
I was fortunate to have Hiro Tawara, a brilliant Japanese Kaiseki Chef, help in the kitchen as well as any other job needed. Thanks Hiro!
Matt preparing the opening cocktail, Stinging nettle and Cuban oregano infused gin with satsuma and dill. All in a glass spoon designed by London’s Andreas Fabian.
Sapling: Golden Char Caviar, PX sherry hen egg sabayon, black oak maple, pecan oil, tangerine lace, crumbled hen yolk
Incredible Golden Char Caviar from Mikuni Wild Harvest
Cocktail for Sapling: Gin, cucumber, beet and horseradish
Black Truffle Tamal
Maize: Black truffle tamal, charcoal, Incan corn mole, sweet canela, red amaranth, red strawberry popcorn
For the past year I have been fascinated with popcorn and have been incorporating it in my cuisine in many forms. I eagerly searched the country for the best popcorn in America. I found it! Red Strawberry Popcorn from Jacks Popcorn. I developed a relationship with Wayne Schandelmeier and now I will only use this incredible ruby jewel for cooking and especially eating!
Cocktail for Maize: Wild juniper infused Mezcal, Krogstad Aquavit, fresh kiwi and wild mustard flowers
Vaporious: Ember beets, wild juniper, foie gras, sunchoke cream, akamiso, blood orange, scallions, pomegranate
Cocktail for Vaporious: Bergamot and Yuzu infused tequila, guava infused tequila , bergamot juice and dehydrated bergamot peel with home made caramel on top
Monsoon: Crab Tonkotsu, roots, soft tofu, liquid nahm prik pao, cucumber noodles, hibiscus daikon, black sesame
*The base of the broth was collected rain water that never touched the ground. It took 3 months. The dish was also inspired by my favorite Liquid Artist named Shinichi Maruyama. He is incredible!
Cocktail for Monsoon: Sage and Surinam cherry infused gin, wild horehound infused maraschino liqueur, lemon and green chartreuse with dehydrated banana flowers on top
Terre Fondu: Fermented Japanese rice, date poultry bouillon, coffee pork jowl butter, Kishibori shoyu, shallot pickled in Nordic beer
*I used the wonderful Tamaki Haiga Mai Rice from ChefShop.
The concept was Melting, the diners were to take the mini blow torch they were given and actively melt their own butter before eating. Thus, they interacted and finished the concept.
Cocktail for Terre Fondu: Gin, 25 year old balsamic, strawberries with a bergamot and Tahitian vanilla infused saint Germain foam
Succulent was the concept and it was called Wetlands. It manifested into a 2 part dish. I incorporated the incredible meat from BB Ranch Seattle for ultra rich flavor.
Brisket Float: Brisket syrup, West Texas mesquite smoked cream, chile salt, preserved smoked tomato bbq puree, caramelized brussel sprouts, grain mustard, dill oil, arugula blossoms
Cocktail for the Brisket Float: Wild toyon berry infused Pisco, kaffir lime, egg whites with rosemary flowers on top
Brisket in Elderberry juices, douglas fir, yogurt, parsnip, pumpkin greens
Cocktail for Elderberry Brisket: Wild white fir infused tequila, pine sap infused saint Germain, cinnamon infused wild flower honey, fresh turmeric and persimmon juice
Frostbite: Salted brazil nut panna cotta, coconut cream, kaffir leaf, sour apple, cinnamon toast crepes
Cocktail for Frostbite: Benedictine, roasted almond oil, lemon and cacao nibs
Amedei Blanco De Criollo 70% Chocolate.
Peru’ where Cecilia discovered and selected rare cocoa form the most remote plantations to create our new dark chocolate, the result of years of experience and research throughout the world and the final workmanship performed in our beloved Tuscany. An unforgettable experience.
Cacao Imbue: Amedei Blanco de Criollo70% Chocolate, red plums & beets, licorice, dandelion root, wild cherry bark, Duchilly hazelnut oil
*There was a crucial ingredient missing from this dessert. I will revisit this sucrose expression soon and update with the absolute final dessert!
Cocktail for Cacao Imbue: Cynar, cassis, espresso with a blood orange air
Matt loving the prep..
My good friend Christoph Milz of Pressmeister Oils introduced me to his incredible nut and seed oils done in the artisan old world style. One taste and I was hooked! I was happy to incorporate them into my liquid conceptual dishes.
Reason number two: Miele
One of the best appliance companies in the world was part of CR8 Liquid Forms success. I was familiar with Miele while in Singapore at 2am lab.
Janice Wong spoke highly of them and I knew that we could do something wonderful together in America.
The 30” Induction M Touch Range. The best I have ever cooked with. The Miele range is the most precise I have ever used. The heat commands are immediate and the control panel is incredibly fluid and helpful!
Tower of brilliance in White
Kristin Ruohonen, a wonderful representative for Miele was crucial to making every step of this union possible. Thank you Kristin
I look forward to a long, creative and edible relationship with Miele, I can’t thank the entire team around the globe enough. I am incredibly honored to have used their excellence. Liquid Forms would not have happened without them!
Sous Chef Ken Lee and Andrew Pierce, couldn’t of done it without you guys! Grateful
Some of the kitchen crew: Max George, Wyatt Campbell, Ken Lee, Me, Andrew Pierce, Issac Rivera, Hiro Tawara
CR8 Liquid Forms was my most satisfying concept and event. I am looking forward to another collaboration with Matthew Biancaniello this summer. Stay tuned!