By: Kim Se-jeong

A renowned charcutier who is currently visiting Grand Hyatt Seoul is improving its deli shop’s menu items.

Benito Plasschaert from the Netherlands is a third-generation charcutier. He makes his own sausages and meat spreads, including pate, terrine and rillette.

Plasschaert received the Golden Medal from Belgian King in 1998 for pate. It was one of many medals he received in his four-decade old career.

He ran “Benito” delicatessen in Ghent, Belgium for 20 years until 1998. His shop in Belgium had more than 300 different kinds of pate made with recipes that are almost a century old.

Now, he works independently, along with his wife, traveling around the world to train butchers and promote his recipes. He has been coming to the Grand Hyatt Seoul since 2011.

Plasschaert came up with several menu items that local customers might appreciate, including champagne pate with grapes; baked apple pate with calvados; and red wine chicken pate.

Pate is relatively unknown in Korea. It is a meat spread in which the key ingredient is liver, especially goose liver. Because of its scarcity, goose liver is often replaced with pig liver. Pate made with goose liver is often expensive.

Plasschaert said there are many different kinds of pate, each of which can be enjoyed according to the time of day and season. For example, he recommended champagne pate with grapes for weekends, when one is simply relaxing at home. He also recommended red wine chicken pate for breakfast on Monday, as “you get prepared for the week ahead,” he said.

Plasschaert makes pate from scratching using organic ingredients. Because his pate doesn’t have preservatives, it doesn’t last very long.

On Friday, the charcutier is presenting a selection of meat spread and meatloaf at the hotel’s deli, along with red wine sausage with bacon and chicken and veal sausage with saffron.

After he leaves, the hotel’s butcher will start making pate using his recipes.

The deli is located on the lobby floor. The shop also offers a variety of gourmet food, both locally made and imported. It also serves coffee, tea, wine, cakes, chocolate and sandwiches, among others.

The deli is open from 7 a.m. till 9 p.m. every day. For more information and reservations, call (02) 799-8167 or visit seoul.grand.hyatt.com.

SOURCE: THE KOREA TIMES