Highlights from the NZ Life & Leisure and Walk Japan reader lunch at Hot Sauce restaurant, Wellington
NZ Life & Leisure readers crowded into Hot Sauce restaurant in Wellington on this recent wet Wednesday to take a journey straight to the cultural and spiritual heart of Japan. They came intrigued by the prospect of wandering ancient stone trails beneath delicate cedar trees, wondering what overnighting in an historic Japanese inn would be like and anticipating the delight of soaking in a traditional onsen hot tub.
What they didn’t have to imagine was delicate and delicious Japanese cuisine as the guests happily sampled from a full banquet of traditional Japanese dishes, accompanied by generous servings of wine and sake. Hot Sauce’s head chef Mark Hsiong, who trained at Le Cordon Bleu and the Tokyo Sushi Academy, created a bespoke Japanese menu that included sashimi, handmade sushi, beef tataki, oysters, tofu and mushroom gyoza, vegetable tempura, chicken karaage, miso-glazed salmon and triple-cooked beef short ribs.
CEO of Walk Japan Paul Christie took guests along the wooded and peaceful trails of rural Japan and delighted them with stories of his own attempts at revitalising a small part of the Japanese countryside.
It is clear that the interest in Japan lives far beyond the two major sporting events being held there in the next 12 months as most guests were anticipating travelling outside of the Rugby World Cup and the 2020 Olympics.