Reaching new heights
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Reaching new heights

New chef de cuisine Luca Russo unveils menu at Red Sky at Centara Grand at CentralWorld

Reaching new heights

Red Sky Restaurant at Centara Grand at CentralWorld has a new chef de cuisine and a new menu.

Blending traditional flavours with modern creativity is Italian chef Luca Russo, whose gastronomic sojourn includes stints at Assaje at the Aldrovandi Villa Borghese, Giuda Ballerino in Rome, Locanda del Pilone in Piedmont and the illustrious La Pergola at the Waldorf Astoria Rome. Most recently, chef Russo was the sous chef at Zaranda in Mallorca, Spain, a two-Michelin star restaurant.

At Red Sky, chef Russo has designed a new menu and, despite his Italian heritage, does not lean towards Italian cuisine. “My style of cooking is food that can draw inspiration from different cuisines to create dishes that are modern yet rooted in traditionality. I want to cook international food, food that is relatable to everyone. Though many times I do get influenced by the cuisine I grew up around. I am from Puglia in the south of Italy. I order ingredients that are from that region because I know they are good quality and I am confident cooking with them,” says the young chef. 

The enthusiasm is not just felt in the chef’s personality, this vibrant energy has also transferred to his cooking and onto the plate. Since joining some two months ago, chef Russo has changed the entire Red Sky menu and plans on keeping it “fresh and happening”, which merely means that it will be constantly changed and adapted. 

Begin with the Fresh salmon tartare with keta caviar (B890++) served with avocado puree and finger lime. Fresh salmon is mixed with smoked salmon, shallots, sour cream, avocado and also has ikura.  The succulent Mazara red prawns crude (B1,250++) comes with capsicum coulis, lemon mayonnaise and a pink garlic gel. To keep it seasonal the Wagyu beef tartare (B790++) features Piedmont hazelnuts and truffles. 

The Pan Seared Foie Gras (B1,350++) is a must-try for something indulgent. The dish comes with Tropea onion confit and toasted pine nuts in a Madeira sauce. “Caramelised onions are put on top of flaky pastry rectangles, on which sits the foie gras, which is glazed with a brown sugar caramel and the I use pine nuts, chives and drizzled with a Madeira sauce to give it the added zing,” explains chef Russo. 

Fagottelli alla carbonara (B950++) is a pasta called “pling” casually, which refers to the sound or action when the pasta is being made. To me, they look like soft pillows of dough stuffed with cheese and white sauce that ooze out with every bite. It is served with a zucchini brunoise and Alpine bacon. 

Grilled Galician octopus (B1,390++) follows next. “The octopus and broccoli is a common pairing Puglia, which the pork sausage ’Nduja is from Sicily. Though for this ’Nduja chip, I mix fish and pork. I cook the octopus and then pasteurise with garlic oil and thyme,” says the chef. 

The real extravagance was the 72-hour slow-cooked Japanese Hitachiwagyu beef (B2,350++). I was surprised to see it being served with a Belgian endive, which I absolutely love. Endives are rarely seen on plates in Thailand but the slightly bitter vegetable was such a good pairing with the richness of the beef. The plate is drizzled with a prune red wine sauce. “Before I cook the meat, I marinate it in apple syrup and then BBQ for five minutes and then it is smoked in cherry wood for 15-20 minutes. It is then sous vided for 72 hours and then it is barbecued again right before service” explains chef Russo. The sauce is the chef’s favourite made from dried smoked prunes.

To welcome the season of white truffles, chef Russo has curated a special menu. Start with the exquisite carpaccio of red prawns adorned with Verona celery hearts and mache salad and topped with white truffle (B2,350++). Then savour the silky texture of an organic egg butter poached to perfection, accompanied by a velvety Parmesan cream and a rich Marsala wine reduction, and crowned with white truffle (B1,750++). Pasta lovers can revel in the handmade tagliolini adorned with Alpine butter and Parmesan cheese, and white truffle shavings (B1,750++) or the rich flavours of the Parmesan and organic egg ravioli served with fondue, brown butter and topped with white truffles (B1,850++). The star of the menu is the special Gundagai lamb pan-seared with a hazelnut crust, accompanied by a corn and celeriac truffle sauce with a generous serving of white truffle slices (B2,950++). This menu is available until Nov 30.

“We’re not just serving food, we’re creating art on a plate. This new menu is a tribute to the culinary traditions I’ve been fortunate enough to be part of, along with a touch of innovation and flair that makes each dish uniquely Red Sky,” adds chef Russo. 

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