Hockey + Chefs = Charity, A Dux In Tux Recap

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Photo courtesy of Anaheim Ducks/Debora Robinson
Our chef and Duck are in the front row (look for the tattoos)

We had the opportunity to attend the 12th annual Dux In Tux, a fund-raiser benefiting the Anaheim Ducks Foundation, which funds wellness seminars, hockey tutorials and in-school visits to OC's kiddies and beyond. Chefs are paired with a member of the team to assist in executing a custom menu for hungry fans (some players were more adept than others).

Diners were up close and personal with more than 20 of the county's culinary favorites, including Bruno Serato of Anaheim White House, Sea Kyeong Kim of Charlie Palmer, and John Cuevas of the Crow Bar + Kitchen. Our table was helmed by Pinot Provence's Jason Petrie, who delivered an indulgent meal worthy of a future On the Line interview. Fortunately, we didn't spot duck on any menu.

Ready with an amuse bouche, plus up to six courses, many chefs even paired dishes with wines--or, in the case of Slater's 50/50, a beer flight! Chef Petrie's first course was a Japanese Hon hamachi, crispy potato, Calamansi chive creme fraiche, English cucumber and quail egg. It was a delicate sight, with richness from the mini yolk and creme. The crisp crunches of cucumber and tater complemented the hamachi.

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Anne Marie Panoringan
Course One

Our assigned "tux" was defenseman Nate Guenin (front and center in the group photo, next to Petrie), currently signed on through the 2012-13 season. Originally from Pennsylvania, he took bites of risotto, foie gras and salmon between our courses. Guenin's previous team was the Columbus Blue Jackets; he still owns a home in that town. Less Sancerre and more beer, Nate socialized with our table while Petrie and his team plated. Around us, various Ducks and restaurants synchronized entrées during award presentations and live auctions.

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Photo courtesy of Anaheim Ducks/Debora Robinson
Cogliano overseeing teammate Lydman's caramelization skills at the Westin South Coast Plaza table

While we can't decide on a favorite course, the meatiest has to go to our fifth plate: a squab-and-black-truffle pork-belly sausage, with caramelized-leek brioche gateau and cranberry squab jus. Like all the other meats cooked sous vide, it was tender and flavorful from being prepared in its own juices. We almost didn't have room for dessert! Almost.

There's no arguing this Forker's lack of sports knowledge. However, I'd educate myself in hockey if it meant another serving of white-chocolate-and-burgundy-truffle frozen custard, with Fuji apple and Minus 8 Canadian vinegar. As well as to see athletes in their duck penguin suits.

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Anne Marie Panoringan
Hello, truffle sausage!

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