Chef Wesley Young has been introducing some new dishes to the menu at Gastown’s Pidgin and this fabulous kampachi loin in among them.
Sourced from 46 South Fish Company, the fish (aka Amberjack) is lightly seared off before Wesley brushes it with an almost imperceptibly thin coat of apple and wasabi puree, which acts as a sort of glue to the soft green herb mix it is subsequently rolled in (Thai basil, mint, cilantro, chinese celery leaves, honewort). The green-cloaked loin is then sliced and arranged on top of a puddle of soy sauce that’s been hit with sake and bonito flakes.
Garnishing the plate are thin slices of cucumber that have fermented overnight in rice bran, plus a brightly pickled mix of carrot daikon and kohlrabi. The ‘salad’ pile is Fregola, buckwheat and raw watermelon radish seasoned with olive oil, soy, mirin and lemon juice.
It all makes for light, springtime eating, and the flavour threat-level players (wasabi, mirin, pickles) play nice and easy. It’s nothing overtly fancy, but it shows a deft touch and goes down deliciously.