Take A (Tasty) Peek Inside The LANDMARK By Lexus Marquee
If you notice smoke curling up from the Lexus marquee at this year’s Lexus Melbourne Cup, don’t be alarmed....
The Birdcage isn’t on fire -- it’s just the hibachi grill from Eazy Peazy, smoking its mouthwatering yakitori meats and fresh veg over the famed bitchotan coals.
Yes, caviar is on the out, while moreish Japanese bites are decidedly in for the 2019 Melbourne Cup Carnival. Taking a firm step away from the traditional track-side cuisine, the Lexus marquee, known as LANDMARK by Lexus, will be transporting its guests (through their taste buds at least), to the back alleys of Tokyo.
To do this the team has enlisted the help of Sharlyn and Yuta Kobayashi, owners of Richmond’s Eazy Peazy.
Sharlyn and Yuta will be setting up shop with their head chef Dan Chan, formally of Hong Kong’s Yardbird which is loved for skewers and hibachi grilled meats, and will be transforming Level 2 of the marquee into their kitchen, complete with their hibachi grill.
“With Lexus being a Japanese company, their distinct way of thinking was very similar to ours,” said Kobayashi.
"Their theme of Omotenashi, that distinct Japanese style serve, is exactly what we’re all about and we want to bring all those elements into that space. On-point food, delicious and tasty, but also the service that people get, because that's what, being Japanese, I’ve grown up with. That's what my parents instilled in me, and that's what we want to put on a plate in the Lexus marquee."
Guests can expect to enjoy delicious vegetables and meats on skewers done over bitchotan coals, which is a distinct and very dense type of charcoal that imbues food with a stunning smoky flavour, unlike any traditional Aussie barbeque.
“Anything cooked on it brings another element to your taste buds,” explains Kobayashi of the incredibly hot coals.
Having spent plenty of time exploring Japan thanks to their sake company, Toji Sake, the husband and wife duo found themselves drawn time and time again to the alleyways of the big cities with their small yakitori houses, or Izakayas.
“We’ll be taking guests down that journey of the alleyways, the smoky flavours complemented with a really fresh drink and beverage offering and trying to take them for an adventure in Japan while still in Melbourne at the races, and an iconic Australian event.”
Behind the smoke, LANDMARK by Lexus guests will get to see Chef Dan Chan in action. With an impressive CV that includes the likes of Supernormal, Cutler & Co, and Cumulus Inc, guests will certainly be impressed.
Yuta and Sharlyn will also be there to help serve their delicious food while also pouring their Sake made in Niigata, Japan, as an extra treat.
“Fire and smoke draws people in, and I think it will naturally mean people gravitate to that area, so that will be the Instagram moment,” jokes Kobayashi. “It’ll be quite different from what everyone else is doing, and it will be really interesting to see what guests think and how they interact with us on the second level of the marquee.”
Eazy Peazy will be appearing in LANDMARK by Lexus throughout the 2019 Melbourne Cup Carnival, along with other collaborations from leaders across design, style and culinary.