Cover Masahiko Endo of Mizunara (Photo: Victoria Chow)

Chef Max Levy welcomes Masahiro Endo again for a unique collaborative effort

Though restaurants, gyms, beaches and cinemas are now up and running, the bar industry remains singled out for continuing forced closures. Apart from creating bottled cocktails, one of the only ways they are still able to ply their craft is through collaborations with restaurants. Among them is Masahiko Endo of Mizunara, who, following a one-night-only guest bartending shift at Kakure, is now partnering for the second time with Okra's executive chef Max Levy for a pop-up cocktail and otoshi (Japanese tapas) experience this month.

Taking place in the white-tiled omakase space on the floor above Okra, this pop-up brings together the upscale cocktails and fine Japanese whiskies found at Mizunara with Levy's cuisine of fermented, cured and aged Japanese dishes. Complementing Mizunara signatures such as the Smoky Islay Sour and Earl Grey Martini, Levy will be serving dishes such as the house-made charcuterie stone with shochu-cured duck breast, mirin-smoked salmon and aged smoked lardo, as well as a tasting platter of tuna that has been dry-aged for 22 days, featuring otoro, chutoro and akami cuts. Guests will also be able to order from Okra's a-la-carte food and drinks menu.

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The pop-up is a continuation of a similar collaboration that Levy and Endo hosted in September of last year, and capitalises on their shared connection to Fukuoka: Endo is a native of the city, and Levy backpacked around the island of Kyushu (where Fukuoka is located) 15 years ago, sampling the cuisine of the region. Says Endo: “My hometown, Fukuoka, is famous for fresh produce, including fish, meat and vegetables. As a bartender from there, I’ve always been keen to pair my cocktails with Japanese food. Fortunately, Max has given me this opportunity to make it a reality."

Reserve your seats for this collaboration by emailing or message via Whatsapp at 2806 1038. The pop-up is available every Thursday, Friday and Saturday until April 29, with two-hour seatings taking place between 5pm to 10pm. Government-imposed social distancing measures will be observed throughout.

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