Chengdu culi­nary fes­ti­val to heat up SF

China Daily (USA) - - ACROSS AMERICA - By LIA ZHU in San Fran­cisco li­azhu@chi­nadai­lyusa.com Congjiang Wang in San Fran­cisco con­trib­uted to this story.

Food­ies in the San Fran­cisco Bay Area will get the chance to taste the au­then­tic food of Chengdu, one of the best culi­nary des­ti­na­tions in China.

A two-week fes­ti­val cel­e­brat­ing Chengdu’s arts and cui­sine kicked off Thurs­day in San Fran­cisco with a fes­tive evening gala at City Hall co-hosted by Ed­win Lee, mayor of San Fran­cisco, and Fu Yonglin, vice­mayor of Chengdu.

The fes­ti­val is the first of its kind be­tween San Fran­cisco and its friend­ship city of Chengdu, cap­i­tal of South­west China’s Sichuan prov­ince.

The part­ner­ship be­tween Chengdu and lo­cal chefs is ex­pected to cre­ate new fu­sion cui­sine.” Yin Jian, deputy direc­tor, Chengdu Mu­nic­i­pal Com­mis­sion

Among the vis­it­ing Chi­nese del­e­ga­tion will be a team of 10 top Sichuan chefs, who will be serv­ing up the evening’s sig­na­ture menu of Chengdu mas­ter­pieces.

Renowned Sichuan Opera artists will pro­vide en­ter­tain­ment of a fung fu tea cer­e­mony and “face-chang­ing” per­for­mance.

In the week fol­low­ing the City Hall gala, the 10 chefs will be joined by Chef Martin Yan, star of the long-run­ning tele­vi­sion show Yan Can Cook, on a Bay Area ex­change tour.

“This is a mon­u­men­tal event for both cities,” said Yan, the culi­nary co­or­di­na­tor of the fes­ti­val. “This is a multi-level, mul­ti­me­dia cul­tural ex­change be­tween two of the most dy­namic cities of the world.”

“Art, cul­ture, food, high­tech­nol­ogy — (they are) two cen­ters of in­no­va­tion and lim­it­less po­ten­tial for growth and two re­gions where fine food is revered as a daily ne­ces­sity,” he said.

Dur­ing the first week, five spe­cial Sichuan-themed culi­nary events will be hosted at five fa­mous Chi­nese restau­rants in the Bay Area — Koi Palace (Nov 11), Chef Chu’s (Nov 13), China Stix (Nov 14), Crys­tal Jade (Nov 17) and M.Y. China (Nov 12-23).

The din­ners will fea­ture clas­sic Sichuan dishes such as mapo tofu, tea-smoked duck with gluti­nous rice and “hus­band and wife de­light”, pre­pared by the Sichuan chefs and chefs at each venue.

“The part­ner­ship be­tween Chengdu and lo­cal chefs is ex­pected to cre­ate new fu­sion cui­sine for Sichuan food en­thu­si­asts in the Bay Area,” said Yin Jian, deputy direc­tor gen­eral of the Chengdu Mu­nic­i­pal Com­mis­sion of Com­merce.

Dur­ing the fes­ti­val, the Sichuan chefs will be split up in teams to visit the cor­po­rate din­ing fa­cil­i­ties in Sil­i­con Val­ley, in­clud­ing at Pin­ter­est, In­tel, Or­a­cle, Face­book, Cisco Sys­tems and Google. The vis­its will fea­ture cook­ing demon­stra­tions.

The chefs will also take their pre­sen­ta­tion to schools in the Bay Area — the Le Gor­don Bleu Col­lege of Culi­nary Arts and Con­tra Costa Col­lege.

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