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Taiwan Dinner

Taipei, October 5, 2012

Free-flow Oysters and Free-flow Wine in Henry’s Bar at the Sherwood Taipei

Putting on this event had been a long-standing wish of mine, as it was on October 19, 2001, when, as the then Chancelier, I arranged one of my first events: an ‘Oyster Cocktail’.

At the time it was a daring move here in the Bailliage of Taiwan, as it was not a dinner 'just' a cocktail, but the response to the format was good and everyone liked it. At last, after 11 years and almost to the day of the anniversary of that first event, we were able to organise a repeat performance.

It was a select group who participated. Just a ‘few’ oysters and wine created a memorable experience and those present had a great evening.

The two chefs in charge of opening the oysters were opening them non stop for some two hours! We were so lucky to benefit from their exclusive attention and delighted that we had chosen to be there. A great choice indeed  … should we keep this amazing event a secret in future?  Maybe!

We were served Kumamoto oysters from Japan (a slow-growing oyster, which takes at least three years to reach a size ready to eat) and Gillardeau oysters from France, which are often named the ‘Rolls Royce’ of oysters.

The chosen wine was, perhaps not unsurprisingly, a crisp Chablis (Joseph Drouhin 2010 vintage in fact), which was the perfect partner to the saltiness of the shellfish.

There was an eclectic mix of members and guests. Bailli Délégué Honoraire Richard Chang was in fine form – that was good to see. One guest was so enthused by the evening and its camaraderie that he was easily convinced to become a member.

In the final analysis, there was an average consumption of more than 20 oysters per person - we lost count during the feast - and the wine was very free-flowing too. Maybe that is why we lost count!

What is more, it was fun to listen to all the oyster stories. Everyone had a special experience to recount – each becoming taller and longer as the evening progressed.

No doubt many of these stories will be replaced with ones from this latest experience held in Henry’s Bar at the Sherwood Taipei. General Manager Achim von Hake, Maître Hôtelier, and his team did a great job and certainly demonstrated what real hospitality can be.

Everyone now hopes that it will not take another 11 years for a third performance, as once news of the fantastic evening had spread throughout the Bailliage, it was clear that many more will be extremely keen to attend the next one not making the mistake of missing another ‘just oysters and wine’.

Paul Wyss, Bailli Délégué