An Asian Adventure
Sometimes in life you get a dream brief. The sort that stirs the creative juices and gets the team spinning on their chairs with excitement. This was one such brief. “Come up with a foodie concept” they said, “something for the Asia market that engages our clients”.
That was in the Autumn and there commenced a frantic period of speaking to the world’s top chefs exploring culinary partnerships that would inspire and intrigue some of the world’s wealthiest and most discerning individuals.
And so it was one cold and frosty morning I ventured east to Singapore and, simultaneously the great Wolfgang Puck ventured west from San Francisco. We had met previously at the launch of CUT in London and Chef Puck had proven the perfect partner, having outposts of both CUT and Spago in the Asian metropolis.
From sub-zero temperatures I arrived to a balmy 28 degrees to be met by our partner agency in Singapore, with whom we have collaborated for some four years. There followed a whirlwind 48 hours. Chef Puck and his team hosted a brilliant masterclass with around 20 guests making risotto, steak and shaving obscene quantities of truffle before honing their skills in the cocktail bar on CUT’s signature drinks. A nervous moment followed as a guest stabbed enthusiastically at a block of ice with what can only be described as a culinary dagger (had we checked the insurance???) before guests retired to the restaurant, booked exclusively for the client, for a lunch showcasing the best of Wolfgang and CUT’s signature dishes.
There was no time to think about jet lag before the private room was turned around for the evening reception. White amaryllis and orchids adorned the tables, set in black and white and surrounded by the world’s greatest wines. A further 30 guests arrived to enjoy a seven course tasting menu cooked by Chef Puck and regular diners in the restaurant couldn’t believe their luck that the maestro himself was in town. Cue numerous autographs and selfies.
What a success the day was – the last guests drifted off in the early hours and the CC team retired for much needed sleep. The biggest of thank yous to an extraordinary chef and his equally marvellous team. And to the joint CC team as well, proving once again that collaboration is key for international briefs and that local market knowledge is indispensable.
There was just time to explore Singapore for a few hours before flying home. China Town beckoned with its colourful lanterns and decorations signalling the New Year vendors hawking their wares to passers by in the bustling streets.
Before I knew it was time to head back to the airport, the Asian adventure complete, with a happy client intent on further events in Singapore and Hong Kong later in the year and on replicating the Wolfgang Puck masterclass in London. What a whirlwind it had been, but an exciting one at that. Roll on the next one, I say.