Sponsored by:

Comment, blog & share photos

Log in | Become a member
The Honolulu Advertiser

Posted on: Wednesday, December 5, 2001

Quick Bites
Harpo's line of salad dressings takes national honors in contest

By Wanda Adams
Advertiser Food Editor

Mike Trombetta of Harpo's pizza restaurants is bursting his buttons over recognition his company's line of salad dressings received in a national condiment competition. Harpo's' Mango Maui Onion Dressing won second place and the Thai Dressing won third place in the 2002 Scovie Awards, sponsored by Fiery Foods and Barbecue magazine. There were 600 competitors in the show in 60 categories, Trombetta said: "Not bad for a little company out in Hawai'i."

The salad dressings, manufactured and bottled locally, contain no water, no chemical preservatives or emulsifiers, Trombetta said, "so what you get is the real flavor, not a diluted taste." They also make an Italian and Oriental dressings.

The Scovie awards are named for Wilbur Scoville, who pioneered a hotness-rating scale for chili peppers, but the competition has expanded to include dressings, sauces and other condiments of all types of flavors, not just spicy ones, according to Dave DeWitt, producer of the annual National Fiery Foods & Barbecue Show, a trade event that will be held in March in Albuquerque, N.M.

Check harposdressings.com. Or find the dressings at Safeway, Times or Daiei supermarkets, Wal-Mart, Kmart and all military commissaries.

Sample cuisine from L'Uraku chef

Chef Hiroshi Fukui of L'Uraku is planning an evening's sampling of his particular brand of contemporary Japanese cuisine on Dec. 14, called "Contemporary Sushi & Mini Bites," featuring 10 mini-courses matched with eight wines.

The one-night-only event — $65 without wines, $78 with, plus tax and tip — will range widely as Fukui marries his classic training in Japanese cuisine to his trademark no-holds-barred inventiveness, from an opihi pasta course to tako ratatouille. Fukui's cuisine has received recent favorable mention in the New York Times and Bon Appetit.

Reservations: 955-0552.

Culinary group honors Alan Wong

The Confrérie de la Chaînes des Rôtisseurs culinary organization Saturday night honored Alan Wong with a Medaille d' Merite award from its Academie Gastronomique of Brillat-Savarin at the Hawai'i chapter's annual dinner at Mariposa at Neiman Marcus. The award recognizes Wong's service to the Chaine and his culinary excellence and promotion of regional cuisine.

The Academie, a sort of sub-organization of the Chaine designed to assist culinary students and promote awareness of regional cuisine, was recently revived by the Chaine and Wong is the first recipient.

Fortnum & Mason marketing in U.S.

Any foodie who has been to London recalls with joy strolling the food hall at Fortnum & Mason in Picadilly, the famed purveyors to royalty for more than 250 years. Now Fortnum & Mason is marketing some of its signature (and pricey!) products to the United States via a new online catalog — fortnumandmason-usa.com— launched just last month.

Also in food shopping online mode, if you're into tapas — those little bites from Spain — you may be interested in tienda.com ("tienda" means store or market) online or toll-free at (888) 472-1022. This Williamsburg, Va.-based company imports Spanish cheeses, hams, sausages, spices, oils, cookware and dried foods — even soaps and colognes — from España. In contrast to the Fortnum & Mason catalog, prices are reasonable.

Locally grown vanilla available

Finally, a ready retail source of products made from locally grown vanilla, which has been available to chefs here, but not home cooks: Jim Reddekopp of Hawaiian Vanilla Co. (producers of the only commercially grown vanilla in the United States) is marketing vanilla extract ($11 for 4 ounces), vanilla-infused coffee beans ($24 for an 8-ounce bag) and whole vanilla beans ($9 a bean or $26 for 3 beans).

Find these products at Compleat Kitchen, Executive Chef and, on the Big Island, at Cook's Discoveries.

Send tidbits of food- or restaurant-related information to Wanda Adams, Food Editor, P.O. Box 3110, Honolulu, HI 96802. Fax: 525-8055. E-mail: wadams@honoluluadvertiser.com