The place settings for the State Dinner. (All photos: Yahoo Food)
The White House gave a sneak peek today at the food and décor for the Tuesday night State Dinner in honor of Japan’s prime minister and his wife. The guest chef for the evening will be Masaharu Morimoto of “Iron Chef” and the Morimoto restaurants in New York and Philadelphia.
The first course for tomorrow’s State Dinner is a toro tartare and Caesar sashimi salad.
Morimoto has been working with White House Executive Chef Cris Comerford and Executive Pastry Chef Susan Morrison on the menu, a celebration of American cuisine with Japanese touches. The first course, Toro Tartare and Caesar Sashimi Salad, pictured above, is wrapped in clear acetate and tied with a Mizuhiki cord. The second course, Vegetable Consomme En Croute and Shikai Maki, is a tribute to the First Lady Michelle Obama’s kitchen garden. The main course is American Wagyu Beef Tenderloin with Spring Vegetables and Maui Onion Veal Jus.
This is a blown sugar teapot surrounded by petit fours.
Dessert features a healthier take on cheesecake. It’s made of silken tofu and soy milk and accompanied by berries from Florida and White House honey. The petit four platter, pictured above, features an elaborate blown sugar tea pot decorated with edible cherry blossoms.
President Barack Obama and the first lady will welcome Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and his wife Akie Abe with a sake toast of Dassai 23 from the Asahi Shuzo brewery in Japan. Three American wines will be served throughout the evening: the 2013 Ryo-fu Chardonnay from Freeman Vineyard & Winery, founded by Ken and Akiko Freeman in Sebastopol, Calif.; the 2010 Joli Coeur Pinot Noir from Morlet Family Vineyards in St. Helena, Calif.; and the 2007 Russian River Cuvee sparkling wine from Iron Horse Vineyards, also in Sebastopol.
A close-up photo shows the detail on the red chopsticks which will be used at the State dinner for Japanese Prime Minister Abe.
Each table will be decorated with cherry blossoms, a symbolic gesture as Japan gifted two cherry blossoms trees to Washington, D.C., in 1912. Today the flowering trees symbolize springtime in the city.
The place settings will feature red lacquered chopsticks (and regular cutlery for those not practiced in the use of chopsticks) and the new Obama State China Service. Made by Pickard China of Antioch, Illinois, the service features 11 pieces for each setting. The company produced 320 sets, which were paid for by the White House Endowment Trust, which is administered by the White House Historical Association.
The evening’s entertainment will be provided by the stars of the film Jersey Boys.
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