Test Kitchen x Chef Nyesha Arrington: Journey to the East
18 Jul 2019
Address 158A Connaught Road West, Shop 3, Sai Ying Pun
Last weekend, LA native Chef Nyesha Arrington graced Test Kitchen for a three-night-pop-up-food-venture! The carefully-crafted pairing menu successfully incorporated flavours stemming from the West with a bit of Eastern flair. On top of that, a location that immediately transports you to the City of Angels with furniture (big commune tables and simple light bulbs) that make you feel at home and fit for socializing.
It was a dining experience to remember as Chef Arrington treated the guests with a warm welcome as she explained the entire creative process from conceptualization down to kitchen prep (most ingredients are locally sourced!). Interestingly, a visit to a local market is what birthed the idea of infusing milk tea curd in the sorbet.
Starting off the tasting journey was the Porcini Bouillon with Kombu, a mix of fresh and dried wild mushrooms steeped in Japanese seaweed served as tea. Immediately, scents reminding you of home and nature quickly warm your heart (and stomach!).
Unexpected Turn of Flavours
The Beetroot with Creamed Spinach and Leek Ash was such as a pleasant surprise. Desiring to play on traditional beef cheeks and celebrating the humble vegetable at the same time, Chef Arrington treated beets three different ways to attain the right texture (a kitchen journey in and of itself). Glazed with vegetable stock, it added another layer of flavour while pulling in the root’s natural sweetness achieving optimum balance.
Food for the Soul
What takes the cake for us is the Cured Duck Breast with Pineapple-date Compote Mint. The duck breast was exceptionally executed; tender and juicy. The flavours dance harmoniously in your mouth showing the chef’s expertise as it requires immense precision in timing and portion control. To add, the compote is successfully covered the overwhelming fatty flavour that duck meat has naturally.
Kudos to the Test Kitchen and Chef Nyesha Arrington for yet another successful pop-up. Perhaps Chef Nyesha Arrington will return with another “Asian-inspired” artisan menu after a trip around the globe!