Chew on This

Carpaccio is a slice of heaven

June 15th, 2016
By Bruce Asato / basato@staradvertiser.com A simple, albeit skillfully prepared offering of wagyu carpaccio took visitors over the moon at the Wagyu Plaza in the new Shirokiya Japan Village Walk at A Moana Center.

By Bruce Asato / basato@staradvertiser.com
A skillfully prepared offering of wagyu carpaccio took visitors over the moon at the Wagyu Plaza in the new Shirokiya Japan Village Walk at Ala Moana Center. Village Walk is open today for a public preview and officially opens on June 25.

I must say, folks in the newsroom certainly don't hold back on sweat equity to put out the paper each day. But the hard work sure does afford us wonderful opportunities to experience first-hand what's going on in the community. We're a lucky lot.

On Monday during a media preview, a small crew of us visited the colossal Japan Village Walk, Shirokiya's revamped yataimura (food court), at Ala Moana Center's Ewa wing. It took each of us to tackle the 44,860 square-foot space, nearly the size of a football field, even with only about half the shops presenting their fare. The scope of what Shirokiya is presenting is astounding: 56 shops offering a long, varied list of foods and cuisines.

Yet one dish, just a taste, garnished with a couple arugula leaves and delivered on a humble plastic plate, made my world drop away — perfectly chilled, perfectly marbled, buttery, tender wagyu carpaccio from the Wagyu Plaza.

Now, I've always assumed that it takes special care to make such a dish — carpaccio is a raw preparation — but the skilled treatment of the melt-in-your-mouth beef, perfectly balanced with a touch of rice wine vinegar and adeptly seasoned with a perfect, light touch of salt, turned the dish into something magical.

It was decadent and refreshing all at once, subtle yet flavorful, absolutely delicious. The dish achieved what fine cuisine is designed to do: provide an experience.

Staff from the Vintage Cave, Shirokiya's fine-dining restaurant that uses only the finest ingredients from across the globe, runs the Village Walk's Wagyu Plaza, six stations dedicated to wagyu, and eight-station Seafood Plaza, plus a Vintage Cave bakery.

Vintage Cave will next open a cafe focusing on Italian cuisine, slated for the fall.

Village Walk will be open for a public preview today from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Doors will officially open at 10 a.m. June 25. Hours will be 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily.

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