10 FAVOURITE COVERS THROUGH THE YEARS
8 years on, we've worked with countless talented toques, dived iuto intriguing topics, and created plenty of arresting visuals along the way. Here are some issues that captivated you.
epicure issues that most captivated us
The vibrancy and freshness of guava, jambu, starfruit and fresh herbs certainly befit the Earth Dayinspired theme for April 2011 issue. To such, we explored sustainability in the culinary world and locavorism, and ways to offset our carbon footprint. A trip to an organic cattle farm enlightens readers as to the difficulties in being certied ‘organic’ in Australia, while our cover story took on the challenging task of going locavore in Singapore.
Our team has fond memories of this cover. It was voted the favourite among epicure’s first year of issues by industry friends at our first anniversary gala dinner and was deemed the most artsy. The image of a fork dripping with black squid ink represented how sexy The New Black Foods theme could be, whether it’s the aromatic allure of black truffles, unearthed from fecund, crumbly soil; or the inimitable sweetness of Kyoho grapes, which are black with a tinge of deep purple.
The broad nature and many sub-varieties of Chinese cuisine make it an extremely complex topic to tackle, so we distilled the essence of it and compressed it into an easy-to-digest A to Z of China’s eight master cuisines, from Sichuan and Zhejiang to Hunan and Fujian. The visuals roused a craving for Chinese dishes – signature regional dishes such as Beggar’s Chicken and Chilled Pig’s Ears are interspersed with images of noodle inns, tu lou (round, fort-like structures unique to the Hakka people in Fujian), and wooden stilt houses along Lake Dongting in Hunan. Readers discovered the two forms of dining in Shanghai (Benbang and Hai Pai), and how China’s Ferran Adrià – chef Yu Bo – preserves his country’s culinary legacy. We also highlighted Chengdu’s dining hotspots from chef Du Fei.
We used typography as the central eye-catching motif on this cover, but what was more unusual was how we shaped the text into a handgun and surround it with cannoli, in direct reference to The Godfather’s iconic quote. Celebrating food in film, this issue made numerous references to memorable dining scenes such as the namesake ratatouille from Ratatouille, the Big Kahuna burger in Pulp Fiction, and apple strudel with whipped cream from Inglourious Basterds. We mused how film scenes can offer insight into characters dynamics and the story plot, highlighted Hollywood celebrities who took their love for wine one step further by investing in vineyards, and shared how Jean-luc Goddard’s 1965 sci-fi movie Alphaville inspired the futuristic interiors of AMMO restaurant in Hong Kong.
With kids being more discerning of what’s on their plate than ever before; an issue on these junior gourmets was inevitable. We tweaked our cover and pages to look playful and featured cocktail and mocktail recipes for parents and their tots. Who knows – you might be bringing up a future master chef!
Going with monochromatic chic for our annual Christmas bumper issue proved tougher than we thought, as the traditional yuletide season is full of festive colour, but we pulled through with aplomb. On our double covers: glistening blackberries in a tart and a pristine white lime sorbet, or crab meat and a quenelle of caviar atop charcoal crostini. A flip through the pages revealed how zealous we were with the black and white theme – festive dinner tables are decked with starkly contrasting dinnerware and accoutrements; celebratory cakes are dramatised with sensuous black and pure white; and even gifts are no less lust-worthy when kept to extreme dark and light tones.
Typography was put to great effect again on the cover of our Power Entertaining issue – the hierarchy of capitalised text fills the white space, portraying pomp and power. Big names in the F&B industry were peppered across the pages: Marco Pierre White talked reality cooking shows and Michelin stars, while Emmanuel Stroobant and Edina Hong played consummate hosts in their sprawling 7,000 sq ft house. Our wine editor June Lee recalled her tour to the house of Champagne Laurent-perrier. We also highlighted exclusive venues to impress guests, and how to pull off a power lunch (wine pairings included) to seal that business deal.
With a resurgence of interest in baking these few years, it was apt to dedicate a whole issue to bread. We paid tribute to the comfort that bread brings to the soul in a compendium of feature stories, ranging from the Top 10 Brioches in town, a masterclass on natural starters to musings on the artisanal bread revolution, which has spawned a wave of bakeries such as Bread & Hearth, Nick Vina and The Bread Table. Page after page, we documented the many forms of bread around the world: focaccia, sourdough, or Chile’s bread-based dishes. For the cover, we went with a simple silhouette of a loaf – achieved with flour, of course.
50 best dishes we ate this year was an ambitious undertaking, but well-worth the months of effort put into compiling the list. Our team studiously took notes and compared dishes, debating what qualified a creation for the list and why certain dishes had to be included (or excluded). The result was a stunning page turner of an issue that highlighted standout dishes of the year, including head chef Aitor Jeronimo Orive’s Chlorophyll Carnaroli at Iggy’s and chef Jason Tan’s Mozambique Langoustine with Cadoret Oyster, Yuzu Kosho, Shiso, Hasu-imo, Mint and Kristal de chine Caviar at Corner House.
The art direction for the four starring dishes in the cover story was also a stark departure from the norm – art director Jenn Chew chose to tie the dishes together using a luxe amethyst coffee table as the background and a mix of modern, pop art-ish Marimekko prints with elegant tableware from Ralph Lauren, Royal Selangor and L’OBJET.
With Asian cuisines in the spotlight, the Asian gastronomy issue was a timely tribute to the flavours of the continent and featured an attention-grabbing cover with hues of bright pink and electric blue. Chef Petrina Loh of Morsels injected Korean, Indonesian and Japanese cuisine elements into her innovative dishes. We discussed how Korean cuisine has come into its own and infiltrated the dining scene of major cities around the world, and investigated the new wave of premium spirits rising out of Asia. The issue also offered tips on the dining spots to hit when in Manila and how to spruce up classic Chinese dishes of lobster claw and mango sago.