Aren’t you just a little curious about the 2013 Oscar Nominee Luncheon? Let’s be honest, if you want to know who was there, what they wore, what their Oscar nomination was, don’t ask The Food Stalker! As always, I had one thing on my mind and one thing only – what culinary creations Executive Chef Suki Sugiura would be serving 160 motion picture artists. With that mission in mind, I found myself valet parking my vehicle at The Beverly Hilton Hotel for the annual celebration.
Without an official Press Pass and only my camera in hand I set out to find Executive Chef Suki Sugiura (he previously led the Polo Lounge at the Beverly Hills Hotel to garner the reputation as one of the top restaurants in the world). From restaurant maitre d’, concierge, Hotel Manager, Food & Beverage Director and even the sexy pool boy the answer was always the same, “He’s not available”. I sensed all eyes were on me moving about the hotel and it was clear word got out as I was being followed by a towering husky security guard. Let me tell you, these guys take their jobs seriously and won’t hesitate to kick you to the curb in a heartbeat. I was able to avoid him by blending in with paparazzi (yea right, with my platinum hair) to get a few snapshots of A-List Stars such as: Hugh Jackman, Steven Spielberg, Jessica Chastain, Robert De Niro, Sally Field and Denzel Washington. I personally met Mr. Jackman, Sally Field and Steven Spielberg. Not my first day at the rodeo! (For the record Hugh, you are just as lovely in person and caused the most swoon-worthy-moment with the fans). Security glared at me and I knew my cover was blown but I had one more task, to get a copy of the menu. Luckily this mountain man’s attention was diverted and I slipped through a cracked door into the ballroom. It was dimly lit resembling Studio 54 back in the day, complete with black lighting and hints of fake fog. I grabbed the nearest menu and made my escape. Mission accomplished.
The Oscar Nominees were treated to a glass of Champagne (or two or three, hey, it’s free booze) and blueberry vodka martinis. Burrata arugula canapés and Sesame Beef with Horseradish Chive Mousse & Cucumber Salsa on French Bread got things started. The luncheon Menu consisted of The Beverly Hilton Salad -Twin Medallion of Goat Cheese, candied Walnuts & Citrus Segments on Bibb Lettuce & Radicchio with Papaya Mango Relish & Champagne Dressing. The big hit was the Orange Miso Marinated Pistachio-Crusted Seabass fillets with Rhubarb Fennel Ragout & Yellow Beets, Kabocha Squash, Broccolini and Campari Tomato. A VIP Vegan Vegetarian dish of Mushroom Ravioli with Grilled Vegetables and Red Pepper Sauce was also served.
Dessert was a shower of treats including: The California Redwood Platter: assorted Pralines. A Black & White Platter: Cookies & Cream Pralines, Vanilla Latte – Cheesecake Peak Pralines. Blue Water Crystal: Dark Complexite Praline, Mini Chocolate Chip, Banana Peanut Butter. Sunset Palm: Apple Jelly Praline, Pistachio Cherry, Ginger Lime Praline. Spirit Dog: Rum Raisin Truffles, Bailey’s Truffles, Kirsch Golden Peaks. Mini Desserts on Gold Plates: Cheese Cake & Fudge Pops, Orange Sanguine Tarts, Vanilla & Chocolate Almond Cake, Mini Canache Cones, and Tuxedo Strawberries. A meal worthy of an Oscar!
As a special honor, each nominee left with an official certificate. sweatshirt, goody bag and my personal favorite, a vertically challenged Oscar (just being politically correct) with the hope it will be replaced by the real thing on February 24th, 2013 at The Dolby Theatre in Hollywood. Oh yea, the Easy Rider dude with the pup in goggles (last photo) drove by just as I was leaving…only in LA!
Not bad for a Monday…See you at The Oscars!