OMGD Philippines Dinner
Bailliage of Manila
Manila, January 21, 2020
'Game' theme at The Peak
" Guests lingered for the better part of an hour after the dinner "

The year's first dinner was really special. Taking advantage of the availability of game, Mark Hagan, the Grand Hyatt’s Executive Chef, executed an outstanding game dinner in the intimate speakeasy room of Hyatt's The Peak - the highest dining venue in Manila.

Starting us off was a rich and slightly peppery pheasant consommé with pheasant tortellini, winter vegetables, and caviar accompanied by Champagne Delamotte Brut.

This was followed by a homemade game pie (Pithivier) containing duck, pigeon, and rabbit, with a parsnip and mustard purée. Some considered this the dinner’s highlight. The chosen wine was Guigal Hermitage 2007 - perfectly aged and at its peak. The wine's tannins were already quite soft, yet the ripe fruit had not faded at all. It was an excellent foil to the gaminess of the pie.

A break was provided by a cranberry and Port sorbet to prime the palate for the main course.

Generous portions of roast saddle of venison in a Parmesan crust, accompanied by butternut squash, truffle mash potatoes, kale, crisp shallots, and venison jus certainly satisfied even the most hungry diner. Extra portions were laid out in the middle of the table in case anyone needed more. An outstanding Paolo Scavino Rocchhe dell'Annunziata Riserva Barolo 2007, decanted for about an hour, had the perfect weight and acidity to match and cut through this hefty dish.

The cheese course was a large wedge of Stilton topped with a fine zucchini and apple chutney. The classic accompaniment of a Vintage Port, in this case Dow's ‘Quinta do Bomfim’ 2005, rounded out this dish nicely.

Finally, another classic of a poached spiced pear with a hot chocolate sauce (pear Belle Hélène) with vanilla bean ice cream closed the dinner.

Guests lingered for the better part of an hour after the dinner admiring the views of the city from this most impressive dining room.

Jay Labrador
Vice-Échanson