Fantasy Feasts

If reading the hugely popular fantasy book series A Song of Ice and Fire makes you hungry, here's your chance to savour the dishes in real life.

Inspired by the tagline "winter is coming" from the books and the accompanying TV series Game Of Thrones, Mr Nicholas Yong of local pop culture website Geek Crusade is organising a new series of events called Dinner Is Coming.

Come April 1, Michelin-starred Chef Osvaldo Forlino of Boon Tat Street joints No Menu Restaurant and No Menu Bar will be serving up a five-course dinner of dishes either described in or inspired by George R R Martin's books.

The 60-year-old may not be a huge fan of the popular show - his wife Patrizia and daughter Gaia are - but he's excited to whip up dishes like mushroom soup with snails and braised boar belly with apple sauce for Singapore fans of the series at No Menu Restaurant.

The almost medieval Game Of Thrones dishes, he says, remind him of the centuries-old cuisine he grew up on back home in Piedmont, Italy.

"Piedmont means 'foot of the mountain' in Italian, so we always had very fresh ingredients and the recipes are very similar to the food we are making for the (Game Of Thrones) dinner," he told M last week.

"For example, there are many wild boar in Piedmont, and my grandmother and mother would cook them using recipes that have not changed for hundreds of years.

"In spring time, also, there would be many snails on the ground.

"It's very familiar food."

So it's fitting that the ingredients for Dinner Is Coming will be imported directly from Italy, as are the ingredients Chef Osvaldo uses for the dishes at No Menu.

Some, like the poached pears that will be soaked in wine for dessert, will come straight from Piedmont.

"I make sure everything is fresh and made on the day itself," he said. "I don't do it any other way."

Though Game Of Thrones may not be his cup of tea, Chef Osvaldo spoke passionately about other cinematic fare that whets his appetite.

Death & food

The 1973 French-Italian film La Grande Abbuffata (The Grand Bouffe) is one particular favourite, with its lavish food scenes illustrating a tale of four friends who go to a villa to eat themselves to death.

Well, death and food are both big themes in Game Of Thrones, and the poached pears look dangerously drenched in blood-red wine.

"Some of the diners on Facebook have asked, 'Is the wine going to be poisoned? When you shut the doors behind us, will we be leaving?'" said organiser Mr Yong.

"Well, we promise you good food and a good time, and we won't try to assassinate anyone."

Sounds perfetto.

Fandom come

Dinner Is Coming is a new series of events organised by local pop culture website Geek Crusade.

"It's a way to bring different fandoms together," said website founder Nicholas Yong, who's already looking into organising dinners inspired by The Hunger Games, Downton Abbey and Hannibal in the future.

Geek Crusade already organises the popular Singapore Zombie Walk.

The first instalment for Dinner Is Coming, based on the popular fantasy series A Song of Ice and Fire and accompanying TV show Game Of Thrones, will be held at No Menu Restaurant on April 1. Chef Osvaldo Forlino will be on hand to talk about each dish and its inspiration.

Though the dinner is already sold out at $95 per head, Mr Yong said he is in discussions with the restaurant to open up more slots.

Expect a few of the 50 diners to even roam around in costume as well. Mr Yong said a couple of Starks and the men from the Night's Watch - all characters from the books and TV show - might just appear.

Those who are interested can visit www.geekcrusade.com/dinner-is-coming to register on a waiting list.


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