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Published on : Thursday, June 4, 2015
The Fundão sweet cherry is one of Portugal’s most typical and well-known regional products, and the arrival of this fruit is synonymous with summer. Taking place from June 16 to July 6, 2015, the Fundão Festa da Cereja – Cherry Feast – is an initiative that aims to promote the consumption and enjoyment of this very fruit.
In Lisbon, several restaurants took up the challenge of making gastronomical creations using the Fundão cherry as a base – Varanda Restaurant at Four Seasons Hotel Ritz Lisbon among them.
“Our idea was to associate a typically Portuguese seasonal fruit with the luxury of Four Seasons. We wanted to energise the food and beverage department and challenge the team to offer a different take on this traditional product,” says Flávio Coelho, the Hotel’s Food and Beverage Director. The challenge also promoted teamwork and made the team do research, experiment, try and fail before coming to the final product.
Pastry Chef Fabian Nguyen created a light and summery Callebaut caramel gourmandise with Fundão cherry sautéed with kirch and cinnamon ice cream. This delicious creation will be available in Varanda Restaurant for the duration of the festival.
At the Ritz Bar, there are two summery drinks on offer during the festival: Fundão cherry iced-tea with ginger, as well as a refreshing Sweet Cherry Bellini created by the Ritz Bar’s very own Barman, Francisco Ventura. The cocktail combines the bitterness of yuzu and the sweet Fundão cherry with Portuguese sparkling wine. Francisco says he’s proud of the result. “Above all, we managed to balance the acidity with the freshness and colour of the cherry. It’s the perfect cocktail to enjoy out on our terrace in summer.”
At the Ritz Bar, it’s served on a slate, with two chocolate cups filled with the tasty mixture of cherry liquor and yuzu juice, with a large, succulent Fundão cherry on top. For those who want to try the cocktail at home, Francisco shares his recipe, as well as presentation suggestions:
Sweet Cherry Bellini
For the best crushed ice (and stress relief!), Francisco suggests wrapping the ice in a towel and smashing it with a rolling pin, and “if you really want to impress, make the ice with mineralised water.”
Fill the glass with the crushed ice and slowly pour the sparkling wine up to two-thirds of the way. In another cup, mix the cherry liquor with the yuzu juice, and slowly pour it into the glass until it’s filled all the way up.
Decorate with a Fundão cherry, and serve in a cocktail glass.
Source:- Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts