Med to order

THE DEEPWATER giant red shrimp found in the Straight of Sicily is a special kind of fish.

By Vijay Dandige (Contributor)

Published: Tue 11 Mar 2008, 11:06 PM

Last updated: Sun 5 Apr 2015, 3:27 PM

Scientifically known as aristaeomorpha foliacea, Risso 1827, it lives at depths of between 200 to 1000 metres, on the muddy floors of the Mediterranean Sea. It grows to an average length of 12 centimetres and belongs to the most prized and expensive species.

The giant red shrimp was the star attraction of an event last week, titled ‘Mediterranean Gold,’ organised by Orange International, a well-known international company in Sicily, Italy that deals in high quality food. Sponsored by the Italian Embassy, the event was held at La Moda restaurant in Radisson Hotel, Deira.

“We’ve organised this event in Paris, Tokyo and London. This is the first time in Dubai,” said Giuseppe Montalbano, trade consultant, Orange International and organiser of the event. “Basically, we bring and introduce some quality products like fruits, marmalade, olive oil, wine, red shrimp and rose shrimp from Mediterranean countries such as Portugal, Spain, Crete Island in Greece and from Sicily.”

He added that they got chefs from Dubai to come and prepare dishes from these products for the invited guests. “The idea behind the event is to make known some of the products of some companies from Mediterranean countries and find a market for them here,” said Montalbano. “We’re representing companies who care for quality because there is a demand for high quality products in Dubai. We especially want to introduce the red shrimp here.”

Invited guests included members of the Italian Embassy, heads of restaurants, food and beverage managers, chefs and potential distributors. A delegation from the municipality of Mazara de Vallo, the biggest port for fishing in Sicily where they catch the red shrimp, was also present.

Montalbano said they chose Dubai ahead of New York where the event would be held next. “Dubai is now a cosmopolitan city. The entire world is looking at Dubai and I think really the future is here,” he said. Guests at the Mediterranean Gold sampled some succulent dishes, like marinated prawn served with mix green salad, olive oil and orange dressing, and fettuccine tossed with prawn, garlic, cherry tomato and fresh basil.

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