Food

VIDEO: Feeling ‘Blue’... The Good Kind, That Is

Countdown to the 16th Annual Table Talk Food Awards — Thursday, May 29, 2014

Thursday, May 15, 2014    

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Consider it an upgrade at The Jamaica Pegasus Hotel. Their ground-floor dining space, The Blue Window Restaurant (so named for its expansive window views of the aqua-blue pool and open skies), is making quite the impression with a classy take-two act. Styled by Jackie Hendrickson, the Pegasus's resident interior designer, the restaurant was reimagined to "have a more modern international feel".

Cue the stainless steel accents, solid-faced quartz buffet countertop with copper shimmer and relaxed aura.

The restaurant's three-month revamp exercise complete, the Jamaica Observer Food Awards judging panel was issued an invitation last Tuesday to break bread with the hotel's powers-that-be: general manager Peter Hillary; director of special projects at The Courtleigh Hotel Group Kate Hendrickson; and group director of marketing and sales at The Courtleigh Hotel Group Nicola Madden Greig.

A rather pleasant evening ensued, commencing with cocktails and sprightly chatter in the Pegasus's lobby-sited watering hole, Blend Bar + Lounge, before the dinner party was ushered downstairs to The Blue Window's private dining room, The Nook, for a three-course culinary affair.

Our hosts and judging panel were joined at the table by specially invited guests, Devon Barrett, general manager of Victoria Mutual Wealth Management; Jürg Blaser, country manager for Nestlé Jamaica; and Mark Chisholm, executive vice-president of Sagicor's individual life insurance division.

Dinner, with select items from the restaurant's international skewing menu, got underway with six choice starters: French onion soup, Greek salad, roasted beet and provolone salad, pumpkin ravioli, chilli chicken spring rolls and tuna sashimi.

Awaiting the arrival of entrées, the mix of hosts, judges, and special guests, seated around two elongated granite tables, partook in insightful food-focused banter as Debra Taylor, marketing manager of Select Brands, poured Argentine, Californian, New Zealand and South African wines from her company's extensive portfolio.

For the evening's entrées, the Pegasus' executive chef Mark Cole and his kitchen staff, firing on all cylinders, dispatched a four-choice course: grilled Atlantic salmon, pimento braised short rib, seared loin of lamb, and smoked chicken linguini, all met with polished plates at the table.

The home stretch came with pastry chef Anthony Walters' sinfully fantastic desserts -- a vanilla shortcake, chocolate rum pudding and tiramisu.

— Omar Tomlinson

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