Vancouver’s Top Chefs Create Sexy Dishes for Valentine’s Day

You’ll be tempted to lick the screen when you see the sexy dishes prepared by chefs from Tojo's, Hawksworth, Market and West

Credit: Clinton Hussey

Vancouver chefs from Hawksworth, Tojo’s, West and MARKET reveal their sexiest meals

If the key to your loved one’s heart is through their stomach, let us show you the way. Four of Vancouver’s top chefs – David Hawksworth (Hawksworth), Hidekazu Tojo (Tojo’s), Montgomery Lau (MARKET) and Rhonda Viani (West) – share their sexiest dishes for Valentine’s Day. Just make sure you leave room for the dessert. At home. 

Credit: Clinton Hussey

Tojo’s – Chef Hidekazu Tojo

The dish: 
The Sexy roll with tiger prawn, asparagus, pineapple, avocado, red paprika and cucumber

Why so sexy?
 “I call this the Sexy Roll. The red paprika acts as a heart, surrounded by tastes from both ocean and land. We recommend that guests eat the roll with their fingers, not chopsticks. How you eat this roll is part of what makes it sexy.”

Love at first bite: 
“The Sexy Roll’s taste is very unique, with all of the flavours hitting at once – an explosion of flavour. The fresh prawns and asparagus provide a crunchy texture, the avocado is creamy and the paprika adds a pinch of spice. This great combination of flavours is perfect for a Valentine’s evening.”

The food/romance connection: 
“I believe the two are inseparable. Food is romance.”

Sake Pairing: Tojo’s Choice Dai Ginjo Sake


Credit: Clinton Hussey 

Market – Chef Montgomery Lau

The dish: Tuna tartare with avocado, spicy radish and ginger dressing

Why so sexy? “Absolutely everything about this dish is dripping in sexiness. The raw, unadulterated flavours combined with the smooth, velvety textures of this dish make for a truly seductive and tantalizing experience.”

Love at first bite: “At first sight, the dish grabs your attention with its bright colours and perfect presentation. The fresh scent of ginger hits next. With the first bite, the clean taste of the raw ahi tuna hits the palate along with the creaminess of the perfectly ripe avocado topped with a spicy radish and ginger dressing. An added bonus? Humble avocado has been identified as a natural aphrodisiac, proven to spark romance.”

The food/romance connection: “Food and romance are intricately tied. What more do you need for a hot and passionate evening?”



Rosé wine pairing: Codorníu Pinot Noir Brut Rosé Cava 2009

Credit: Clinton Hussey

Hawksworth – Chef David Hawksworth

The dish: Atlantic lobster with spicy kumquat lemongrass vinaigrette, crunchy rice and cress

Why so sexy?  “Lobster is a real delicacy and it’s such a treat to eat. This dish is very textured and tactile; the creamy flesh of the lobster is spiced up with the kumquat lemongrass vinaigrette and it contrasts with the crunchy rice and crisp peas. It’s light but satisfying.”

Love at first bite: “The sweet delicate white flesh of the succulent Atlantic lobster is paired with the deep warming heat of the spicy lemongrass, which is tempered by the sweetness of the kumquat and the rustic earthiness of the radish, peas and cress.”

The food/romance connection: “There’s a lot of love involved in creating a dish. There’s the love and respect for the ingredients and also the care that goes into making it. You really feel the love when someone has cooked a meal for you; whether it’s celebrating with friends and family or enjoying an intimate dinner.”

White wine pairing: Meyer Family Vineyards Okanagan Valley Chardonnay 2012


Credit: Clinton Hussey

West – Chef Rhonda Viani

Dish? Pineapple Pavlova with coconut rice pudding and passion fruit ice cream

Why so sexy? “Passion fruit has a very intoxicating flavour and aroma. The combination of the textures of the fruit and the crispiness of the meringue and then the creaminess of the pudding – it’s a little tropical getaway.”

Love at first bite: “The Pavlova is a baked meringue. It’s crispy on the outside and then soft on the inside so it really melts in with tropical flavours, the pineapple is roasted and the ice cream is passion fruit coconut. Anything with passion fruit is delicious.”

The food/romance connection: “Whenever you think of going out on a date, food always seems to be involved. The combination of flavours and textures makes people feel good.”

Dessert wine pairing: Château d’Armajan des Ormes Sauternes Bordeaux 2008

Credit: Clinton Hussey

Bonus: A Sea Urchin Dish by Chef Masa from Tojo’s

“This sashimi dish was inspired by the Pacific Ocean. The sea urchin comes from north side of Vancouver Island and all ingredients come from around B.C. We want to show our guests how beautiful and varied the marine life is here. The natural colouring of the fresh seafood looks gorgeous on top of the cedar. We’ve combined the beauty of the Pacific with traditional Japanese food plating.”