Cross­ing Cul­tural Grounds

Robb Report Singapore - - Savour -

The omakase con­cept has been shared widely with the world, even per­me­at­ing cer­tain vari­a­tions of Western cuisines. For Stephan Zoisl, Aus­trian chef-owner of Chef’s Ta­ble by Chef Stephan Zoisl (www.chef­stable.sg), he wanted a con­cept that would chal­lenge the bound­aries of pro­fes­sional cooking. “Chef’s Ta­ble is meant to be a think-tank, a daily on­go­ing thought ma­chine about cooking. As there is no menu, we are not lim­ited by any rules or types of cui­sine. There are no sea­sons that we have to fol­low or his­tory that we have to obey. It’s to­tal free­dom of cooking,” he ex­plains.

Zoisl’s 34-seater restau­rant is as close to omakase as any Western restau­rant can get. Ev­ery­thing from the lay­out of the din­ing room to the ever-chang­ing menu echoes clas­sic omakase sen­si­bil­i­ties. He even goes as far as to have his culi­nary team serve the food. “It’s key to the ex­pe­ri­ence. And the only ones who know what is on the plate are the chefs. It would be too time-con­sum­ing to pass it on to our front-of-house team, as not ev­ery ta­ble gets the same food,” he says.

Of­ten, the metaphor­i­cal blind­fold makes omakase a huge ex­er­cise in trust. How­ever, there is still an el­e­ment of per­son­al­i­sa­tion as din­ers can axe cer­tain un­favourable in­gre­di­ents. “We cus­tomise the menus ac­cord­ing to the guests’ di­etary re­stric­tions as well to the in­gre­di­ents that they don’t want to eat. Ev­ery­thing is done on the spot in the kitchen.”

And the pur­pose of such an ar­du­ous en­deav­our? “The big­gest goal and phi­los­o­phy at Chef’s Ta­ble is this: no sig­na­ture dishes, no re­peated dishes. Ev­ery din­ner should be a dif­fer­ent ex­pe­ri­ence,” Zoisl says.

And you can’t put a price on that.

“The big­gest goal and phi­los­o­phy at Chef’s Ta­ble is this: no sig­na­ture dishes,

no re­peated dishes. Ev­ery din­ner should be a

dif­fer­ent ex­pe­ri­ence.”

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