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Caviar spaghetti, caviar dessert and more.

Summary: A Dh1,300 seven-course dinner, each featuring one of the world's most expensive food ingredients, caviar, is how Etihad Airways will make its entry to Gourmet Abu Dhabi festival this month from February 5 to 20.

A Dh1,300 seven-course dinner, each featuring one of the world's most expensive food ingredients, caviar, is how Etihad Airways will make its entry to Gourmet Abu Dhabi festival this month from February 5 to 20.

Participating for the first time in the five-year-old food extravaganza, Etihad Airways will join 19 other of Abu Dhabi's fine dining establishments, where some of the world's most renowned master chefs will be cooking side by side with locally based chefs.

Since Etihad doesn't have a restaurant of its own, its Caviar and Bubbles dinner will take place, on February 15, at the Yas Viceroy. In charge of the kitchen will be Australian celebrity chef Brent Savage and Thomas Ulherr, Etihad Airways' corporate executive chef.

"In honour of the fifth Gourmet Abu Dhabi, we will be using five different caviars in an inspired seven-course menu. We will use only the finest caviar, both farmed and wild," said Chef Ulherr, a 17-year resident of Abu Dhabi.

The full seven-course menu is a closely guarded secret, though Chef Ulherr did reveal the signature dish: a Tom Yam creamy spaghetti with Iranian Beluga caviar infused with lemongrass, ginger and chilli. Chef Savage, who will be in charge of four dishes from the Caviar and Bubbles menu, is a two chef hat (the Australian equivalent of Michelin star), co-owner of Sydney's award-winning Bentley Restaurant and Bar.

"Caviar is one of those ingredients that you rarely get to use in volume, so the prospect of using such a luxurious ingredient over a seven-course dinner is just mind blowing for me and a fantastic opportunity as a chef. I'll be creating a really cool caviar dessert, which I believe will be one of the most exciting dishes of the evening," he said. With the exception of Iranian Beluga, all caviar brands for the Caviar and Bubbles dinner are produced on international farms.

"Caviar sturgeon was grossly over-fished and became a dying element of the global culinary industry. When I arrived in the UAE, wild caviar was Dh1 per gram. Now you can pay more than Dh8 per gram for the same product," added Chef Ulherr.

Gourmet Abu Dhabi will open on February 5 with an all-star cast gala dinner Ritz-Carlton Abu Dhabi. The hotel itself, a beachfront resort, is not quite finished yet, and will only be opened later this spring. With 447 guestrooms and 85 private villas, this will be one of Abu Dhabi's biggest hotel-resorts!

UAE's only professional female Emirati chef, Khulood Atiq and Japan's Shinichiro Takagi, a master of traditional "kaiseki" cuisine will also be among the many other culinary artists joining the party.

"Since the evening will mark the opening of the festival's fifth anniversary, we are planning a celebratory-style event which we suspect will be the talk of the city long after the guest have left," promised Noura Al Dhaheri, leisure products development manager at Abu Dhabi Tourism and Culture Authority, the festival organiser.

silvia@khaleejtimes.com

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Publication:Khaleej Times (Dubai, United Arab Emirates)
Geographic Code:7UNIT
Date:Jan 31, 2013
Words:544
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