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Gourmet Japan celebrates the best of Japanese culture and fine cuisine

Singapore, 24 April 2014 – In recognition of the status and influence of Japanese cuisine in Singapore and Asia, the third edition of Gourmet Japan kicks off this season with a month-long festival that offers the sophisticated diner with new gourmet experiences.

Starting 28 April to 31 May 2014, Gourmet Japan will bring together renowned restaurants and dining establishments across the island to showcase a myriad of gourmet activities which includes dinners, soirees and tastings. 

Following the same successful format of previous years, this year’s event promises to deliver more finesse and exclusivity through its introduction of fine sakes and champagnes as well as renowned local and international Japanese chefs including Michelin-starred chef Masayasu Yonemura and guest chef Joe Endo. The delectable events will be held at some of Singapore’s best dining establishments such as Shinji by Kanesaka (The St. Regis), Han, Kaiseki Yoshiyuki and Ki-sho. 

For the first time, Gourmet Japan will also be working with establishments such as Hashida Sushi, Tenshin, Izy, BAM! Tapas-Sake Bar and ME@OUE, to offer innovative dining concepts to the discerning diners. 

Connoisseurs of sakes will be in for a treat as they have a chance to savour a range of premium Japanese sakes that are making their public debuts in Singapore. Premium sakes such as Taka, Sawaya Matsumoto, Tengumai, Yamagata Masamure, Hakurakesei, Meikyoshisui will be on show and made available to diners participating in the Gourmet Japan events.

Other than the premium range of sakes which will be making their debut, Gourmet Japan continues to serve up exquisite whiskies which include the Yamazaki, Hakushu and Hibiki brands as well as evening yakitori session featuring Japan’s number one prestige beer, The Suntory Premium Malt’s. 

Gourmet Japan is jointly organised by Sphere Exhibits, a wholly owned subsidiary of Singapore Press Holdings (SPH) and Poulose Associates, a Singapore-based food and beverage consultancy firm. 

As the presenting partner of Gourmet Japan, JCB International Ltd is offering its card members 20% off all event ticket prices, 15% off Taste Japan dining offers and 20% off Mixology Japan cocktail offers. 

Reservations and ticket purchases can be made through the official event website www.gourmet-japan.com or the official hotline 6319-2153, from 12 April 2014. 


Innovative Pairing Concepts

Simply put, the Izakaya Cocktail Dinner on 30 April held at Izy, will be a cocktail aficiandos dream! Izy will be showcasing a specially crafted six course menu paired with six cocktails which will be concocted using Midori, Paraiso Lychee, Kuromara Shochu, Champagne Nicolas Feuillatte, Hakushu Whisky, Yamazaki Whisky. Look forward to a thoughtful new take on Japanese cuisine which redefines traditional Izakaya and be prepared for a frenzy of flavours that culminate in gastronomic bliss!

The name Bam! is indicative of the flavour explosions you’ll experience as your palate is subjected to imaginative, surprising and above all, delicious combinations that are served up to the in-laid steel placemats adorning the concrete industrial counter. For one night only on 14 May, indulge in the sensational menu specially curated by Chef Pepe paired with fine sakes from Yamagata Masamune, Meikyo Shisui and Hakurakesei at the Tapas & Sake Dinner. What may seem at first strange blend, Spanish and Japanese elements, will become an almost obvious marriage!

French cuisine finds an unlikely partner in Sawaya Matsumoto Sake, but to surprisingly delicious results. To be held at JAAN on 22 May, one of the defining bastions of French cuisine in Singapore, the evening at East Meets West Sawaya Matsumoto Sake Dinner will feature a specially crafted menu by resident Chef Julien Royer. Each delectable dish will be paired with the six expressions of Sawaya Matsumoto Sakes.

29 May will see the finale of Gourmet Japan at ‘The Best of Japan Dinner featuring Michelin-starred Chef Yonemura and Celebrity Chef Kentaro. This evening showcases a seven-course menu with two representations of Japanese, Chinese and French cuisine where each course will be paired with various liqueurs including sake, shochu, Hibiki, Yamazaki and Hakushu whiskies. Celebrity Chef Yonemura oversees the entire kitchen of ME@OUE while Celebrity Chef Kentaro acts as the consultant to the Chinese Kitchen. With both chefs working hand in hand, be prepared to enjoy what we call the best of Japan dinner, both cuisine and beverage!


Keeping the Traditions

Kaiseki refers to a multi-course Japanese dinner where the epitome of skills and techniques are used to celebrate seasonal ingredients to a culinary art form that are not just a feast for the eyes but a feast for the senses. Gourmet Japan celebrates this art form with a new dimension of pairing these dishes with the complexity of fine whiskies, sakes and the exquisite distinction of champagne.

At "The Art of Kaiseki Dining with Tengumai Sakes" on 7 May at Ki-sho, Chef Kazuhiro Hamamoto, a protégé of Chef Tetsuya of Waku Ghin, will be presenting his unique interpretation of Kaiseki which will be paired with 68 expressions of Tengumai sakes which is making its debut at this event. Each course has been artistically created to enhance its natural flavours with the nuances of these fine sakes.  

21 May sees ‘An Omakase Experience with Champagne Jacquesson’ held at Hashida Sushi. The revered tradition of multi-course haute Japanese cuisine served omakase style has long been the unwavering custom of the Hashida family, who pride themselves in moulding the best of nature’s offerings into an art form and gastronomic adventure. For one night only, experience Japanese dining the Hashida way by witnessing the perfect balance of flavours, textures, colours and fragrances, while being served unforeseen creations to progressively whet the appetite. Delicate techniques and craftsmanship are significantly apparent in the dishes, and these are accompanied by six expressions of Champagne Jacquesson to complete the magic of Kaiseki dining at Hashida Sushi.

One of the highlights of Gourmet Japan will be the ‘High Expression Suntory Whiskies Sushi Dinner’ at Shinji be Kanesaka, St. Regis on 27 May. Head Chef Shunsuke Kikuchi and his team take centre stage at the hinoki sushi counter, bearing testimony to the deep-rooted commitment behind an age-old craft. Lush red carpeting lends an air of grandeur, as does the floor-to-ceiling display of premium sake and wines which serves as a lavish backdrop. This showcases the richness of Japanese culinary heritage and unrivalled hospitality. Diners will be treated to a fine evening of delicate sushi, paired with Hibiki 17 Year Old and 21 Year Old, Hakushu 18 Year Old and 25 Year Old and Yamazaki 18 Year Old and 25 Year Old.

On 28 May, one of the city’s newest and most talked about Kaiseki restaurants, Yoshiyuki, will create a near perfect Kaiseki experience by balancing taste, texture and presentation using the best seasonal produce which will be specially procured and flown in. Chef Yoshiyuki Kashiwabara takes "A Kaiseki Experience with The Hakushu" to new heights and complements the delicate flavours of his signature creations with a selection of the finest sakes from The Hakushu. 

Chef Yoshiyuki has spent seven years as the personal chef to the Japanese ambassadors based in San Francisco and Singapore and has partnered with famed restaurateur Ignatius Low to open Yoshiyuki in 2012.


Fried to Perfection

On the night of 8 May at Tenshin, Tempura Classics with Champagne Nicolas Feuillatte and Palmes d’Or will feature Chef Hideaki Onedera’s experience. With freshly flown-in seafood, artistic presentation and excellence of culinary techniques, diners are sure to enjoy a specially prepared 6-course menu featuring five to six variations of tempura to delight palates.

Taste buds are further pampered with premium Kushikatsu and Osaka-style cuisine prepared by Chef Seiichiro Arakawa on 20 May at the True Culinary Essence of Naniwa with Brown Brothers “Patricia” Series. The menu will feature Chef Seiichiro’s signature dishes in a 7-course dinner to entice. With seafood specially flown in from Japan, a batter made using breadcrumbs specially imported from a bakery in Tokyo along with a dipping sauce made from scratch, this promises a splendid occasion where food and nature, texture and colour comes brilliantly together.


Casual Evening Indulgences - Japanese Style

For more casual take on Japanese cuisine, there will be three evenings of casual Japanese dinners and soirees featuring a wide variety of famed casual Japanese cuisine styles paired with a wide variety of beverages.  

To kick start the entire Gourmet Japan, head down to ME@OUE on 29 April for "Risis presents An Evening Soiree with The Hakushu". This captivating evening offers whisky lovers the ideal opportunity to chill out and enjoy two expressions of Hakushu whisky, and tantalising gourmet spread by ME@OUE. The perfect view and great company completes the mood to unwind after a hard day at work.

On 6 May, head down to San-Sui Sumiyaki & Bar for "Honda presents Suntory The Premium Malt's & Yakitori Sunset Session", a casual evening of good company and free flow of the new Suntory Premium Malt's Beer. 

For lovers of meat and wines, Fat Cow will feature the best way to enjoy premium meats with the bold flavours of Chilean wines. Enjoy a selection of meats with fine wines of Errazuriz on 15 May in the "The Best of Japanese Meats with the wines of Errazuriz".


The Art of Japanese Cuisine Workshops

For participants who have a keen interest in learning how to whip up Japanese dishes at home, these workshops offer the ideal opportunity to enjoy intimate sessions with various leading culinary maestros as they share their signature Japanese-inspired dishes. Held in the comfort of the well-equipped ToTT Cooking Studio, this rare opportunity spans one weekend from 17 and 18 May with limited sessions and seats available. 

Gourmet Japan will also cater to an ever-growing group of diners and enthusiasts through the following activities. 


Heralding 7 years of success in Tokyo with Master Chef Joe Endo

Fans of Asian cuisines will be whisked on an eye-opening gastronomic journey from 19 – 25 May at Si Chuan Dou Hua at the TOP of UOB Plaza. 

Heralding seven years of success in Tokyo with Master Chef Joe Endo marks Si Chuan Dou Hua’s seven successful years in Japan since it made its entry into the country’s sophisticated and well-developed market back in 2007. Helming the Sichuan kitchens of the restaurant in Tokyo, Japan-born Chef Endo had worked in some of the most famous kitchens in Japan before being appointed Master Chef of Si Chuan Dou Hua Tokyo prior to its opening. For reservations, call 6535-6006


Oita and Okinawa Fair

Enjoy great dining and entertainment options with over 20 different restaurants and F&B outlets at Liang Court, which is the “Official Mall” for Gourmet Japan. Diners and shoppers can also take part in activities that celebrate authentic Japanese cultures and cuisine. From 30 May to 5 June, sample fresh produce flown in directly from Oita and Okinawa Prefecture. Diners and shoppers can learn more about the events and activities happening in Liang Court during our Kodomo No-hi promotions as well as the Oita and Okinawa Prefecture fair from our website at www.liangcourt.com.sg orwww.facebook.com\liangcourt.


Taste Japan and Mixology Japan 

Complementing the various events of Gourmet Japan, a selection of 11 Japanese restaurants and 10 bespoke bars will also be offering special offers exclusively for the month under the Taste Japan dining and Mixology Japan cocktail offer.

As the presenting partner of Gourmet Japan, JCB will be offering its card members a 20 % off all event ticket prices as well as 15 % off a la carte food menu for Taste Japan dining and 20 % off bespoke cocktails for Mixology Japan promotions. 

Reservations and ticketing for the Gourmet Japan events will start from 12 April 2013.

Ms Mandy Wong, Business Director, Consumer, of Sphere Exhibits, said: “We have been encouraged by the positive reception for our past two editions of Gourmet Japan.  This year’s Gourmet Japan continues to uphold the traditions and high standards that the best of Japanese cuisine and produce has to offer. Working with leading chefs and F&B establishments, diners are guaranteed of a memorable dining experience.”

We have also continued to push the envelope in innovation through introducing new and unexpected concepts such as cocktail pairing dinners, tapas and sake pairing and Japanese-influenced French cuisine and Sake pairing. To cater to an even bigger group of diners, we have included in this year's program a gourmet fair at Liang Court, a specially flown in guest chef from Tokyo who will be hosted at Sze Chuan Dou Hua as well as a new concept for the Taste Japan dining promotion at more than 10 renowned Japanese restaurants. With the continued support of our presenting sponsor JCB and other partners, we are confident that this year's Gourmet Japan will continue to scale new heights in the Japanese culinary scene,” she added. 

"We are delighted to be the presenting sponsor of Gourmet Japan 2014 again for the third year running. Over the past three years, JCB has made significant progress in brand share across Asia and Gourmet Japan is one of the platforms that has enabled us to deliver unique JCB values, aligned with our vision as a true global brand, supported and preferred by the customer," said Mr Kimihisa Imada, Deputy President, JCB International Co Ltd.


Issued by Singapore Press Holdings Ltd
Co. Regn. No. 198402868E 

For more information, please contact:

Ian Lim (Mr)
Senior Manager
Marketing
Sphere Exhibits Pte Ltd
DID: (65) 6319 1653
Email: cwlimian@sph.com.sg

Cheryl Chan (Ms)
Executive
Marketing
Sphere Exhibits Pte Ltd
DID: (65) 6319 8539
Email: ccheryl@sph.com.sg

Yeo Siew Chi (Mr)
Manager
Corporate Communications & CSR 
Singapore Press Holdings Ltd 
DID: (65) 6319 1586 
Email: yeosc@sph.com.sg 


About Sphere Exhibits Pte Ltd

A wholly owned subsidiary of Singapore Press Holdings (SPH), Sphere Exhibits, which stands for "SPH Events, Roadshows and Exhibitions", aims to be the leading events company catering to a diverse mix of trade and consumer clientele. 

Backed by a committed and experienced team of professionals and SPH's comprehensive range of media platforms, Sphere Exhibits’ shows, events and exhibitions centre on unique concepts that attract local audiences and regional participants. Among Sphere Exhibits' events are The IT Show, COMEX, Licence2Play, Asian Masters, Gourmet Japan and Kidz Academy.

Leveraging on its expertise in event conceptualisation, planning and execution, Sphere Exhibits delivers memorable and quality events that meet the objectives of its clientele and partners.


About Singapore Press Holdings Ltd

Incorporated in 1984, main board-listed Singapore Press Holdings Ltd (SPH) is Asia’s leading media organisation, engaging minds and enriching lives across multiple languages and platforms.


Newspapers, Magazines and Book Publishing 

SPH has 19 titles licensed under the Newspaper Printing and Presses Act, of which nine are daily newspapers across four languages. On an average day, 3.05 million individuals or 76 per cent of people above 15 years old, read one of SPH's news publications. SPH also publishes and produces more than 100 magazine titles in Singapore and the region, covering a broad range of interests from lifestyle to information technology. SPH's subsidiaries, Straits Times Press and Focus Publishing, produce quality books and periodicals in English and Chinese.


Internet and Mobile

Beyond print, SPH's suite of digital products, including online editions of newspapers and magazines, as well as mobile applications, enjoy over 400 million page views with 20 million unique visitors every month. Apart from AsiaOne, SPH’s online and new media initiatives include ST701, the leading online marketplace for jobs (STJobs), property (STProperty), cars (STCars) and general classifieds (STClassifieds); Stomp, 
omy.sg and The Straits Times RazorTV. SPH also launched The Straits Times’ iPad and enhanced iPhone applications, an Android smartphone application and The Business Times’ iPhone application. SPH’s Chinese flagship newspaper Lianhe Zaobao has also launched its digital editions which include a web application, as well as online and PDF versions.

Broadcasting

In the radio business, SPH Radio Pte Ltd operates entertainment stations UFM 100.3 in Mandarin, as well as Kiss92 and HOT FM91.3 in English. SPH has a 20 per cent stake in MediaCorp TV Holdings Pte Ltd, which operates free-to-air channels 5, 8 and U, and a 40 per cent stake in MediaCorp Press Limited, which publishes the free newspaper, Today. 


Events and Out-of-Home Advertising

SPH’s events arm Sphere Exhibits organises innovative consumer and trade events and exhibitions as well as large scale conferences in Singapore and the region. In addition, SPH has ventured into out-of-home (OOH) advertising through its digital out-of-home platform SPHMBO. 


Properties

SPH REIT is a Singapore-based REIT established principally to invest, directly or indirectly, in a portfolio of income-producing real estate which is used primarily for retail purposes in Asia-Pacific, as well as real estate-related assets. SPH REIT is managed by SPH REIT Management Pte. Ltd., which is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Singapore Press Holdings Limited. 

The initial portfolio of SPH REIT comprises the following two high quality and well located commercial properties in Singapore:

· Paragon, a premier upscale retail mall and medical suite/office property, well known for its upscale mall housing many luxury brands, located in the heart of Orchard Road; and
· The Clementi Mall, a mid-market suburban mall located in the centre of Clementi town, an established residential estate in the west of Singapore. 

The Seletar Mall is SPH's latest retail development and is expected to open at the end of 2014. This property is a potential asset to be injected into SPH REIT. SPH’s wholly-owned subsidiary, Times Development Pte Ltd, also developed a 43-storey upmarket residential condominium, Sky@eleven, at Thomson Road.


For more information, please visit www.sph.com.sg