Let's face it, business travel often equates to long hours, uncomfortable accommodations, sub-par unhealthy food and a cramped up hotel room "office" but NOT anymore! At least not at the brand new Island Hotel's 20th floor, Island Club Lounge.
Executive Chef David Man has designed California-inspired menu experiences throughout the day that the most discriminating guests will enjoy.
“While high-end, personalized service is the foundation for our new Island Club lounge experience, we also know how important reliable connectively and a comfortable environment is to our guests when traveling. Ensuring we deliver the best experience to every guest, including our tech-savvy Club Ambassadors who will help guests with their every need, means they can stay connected, relaxed, and productive in a sophisticated and professional setting simply an elevator away,” said Donald Stamets, general manager of Island Hotel Newport Beach.
The Island Club lounge culinary experience enhances the exceptional service and sophisticated atmosphere guests will enjoy as they take in the sweeping ocean views from the 20th floor. The menu Chef David Man has created for the lounge features ‘small bite’ experiences based off of the hotel’s most popular classics that also calls for California-grown produce, herbs and wines.
Below are three popular Island Hotel Newport Beach selections that will be included in the Island Club lounge’s ‘wine-down’ experience:
Island Hotel Tortilla Soup
½ each Ancho Chile
1 each Red Bell Pepper, Rough Chopped
½ each Onion, Roughly Chopped
1 each Leek, Chopped
½ each Jalapeno, Chopped
5 each Roma Tomatoes, Chopped
¼ tsp Ground Oregano
1 tsp Ground Cumin
32 oz Chicken Broth
¼ bag Tortilla Chips
½ bunch Cilantro
Heat stock pot with oil and then add the Ancho Chile, red bell peppers, onions, leeks and jalapeno.
Cook this mixture until vegetables are soft. Add in the spices, chopped tomatoes and cook for another 3 minutes. Add the chicken broth and bring to a boil. Simmer for about 20 minutes.
Turn off the heat, and then add the cilantro and tortilla chips. Cover the pot (no heat) and let the soup sit for about 10 minutes. Blend well and season to taste with salt and pepper.
Garnishes and serving suggestions: cooked chicken, Cotija cheese, colorful tortilla strips, chopped cilantro, or avocado.
“I wanted the ‘wine-down’ menu to be fun and different than what you’d expect at a hotel club lounge,’ Chef Man says. “Guests will find little bites of high-end offerings with Asian, Italian, American and Mexican influences. I think the tortilla soup will go great with one of our homemade flatbreads that’ll be kept warm all day.”
Prosciutto-Wrapped Prawns with Island Hotel Chimichurri Sauce
1 cup Finely Chopped Parsley
1TBL Oregano, Chopped Fine
¾ cup California Olive Ranch brand Olive Oil
Juice & Zest Half of a Fresh Lemon
1 TBL Red Wine Vinegar
Pinch Red Chili Flakes
Pinch Salt & Pepper
Combine all ingredients and mix well. Add the salt and pepper to taste.
If you prefer the sauce to be loose or thinner, add a little oil at a time until it reaches the consistency you like.
This is best served at room temperature so it stays fluid.
“The Chimichurri sauce lasts for three to five days so you can make it ahead of time,” Chef Man says. “Let all of the ingredients speak for themselves, so no garnish. A glass presentation will let the colors shine through and complement the color of the prawns.”
Island Hotel Red Wine Sauce – Beef Wellingtons
1 each Shallot, Minced by Hand
1 cup California Red Wine
1 Sprig Thyme
½ Bay Leaf
1 cup Beef Demi-Glace
In a sauce pan, add the minced shallot, California red wine, thyme and bay leaf.
Bring everything to a boil, and then reduce to a simmer. Reduce the wine sauce by 75%, and then add in the Demi-glace. Bring the mixture to a boil again, and then reduce it down to a simmer. Continue the reduction until it is a nape consistency or to your own desired thickness.
Season the sauce to taste with salt and black pepper. Before serving, whisk in the butter to give the sauce more richness and to smooth it out.
“We make the Demi-glace in house at Island Hotel and the secret is time and patience,” Chef Man says. “It takes about two days to make. The secret is to make sure you roast the bones properly. That’s critical and so is roasting the mirepoix properly to get the sweetness and full flavor out of the vegetables. After that, we cook the sauce slowly for a long time to reduce the liquid before straining it and reducing it again.”
On red wine, Chef Man says, “To make the Demi-glace, I like to use a California Cabernet or Zinfandel table wine primarily because California makes the best wines in the world. But for serving purposes and to enjoy with the meal, my favorite Cabernet is Silver Oak. Buehler would be my favorite Zin.”
For more information please visit The Island Club.