The biggest night in Hollywood calls for a big menu to match.
Following the 89th Academy Awards on Feb. 26, stars like Viola Davis, Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone will dine on more than 50 dishes created by chef Wolfgang Puck at the Oscars Governors Ball official after party.
On Thursday, media members were treated to a sampling of the hors d’oeuvres, which include old favorites like Puck’s black truffle chicken pot pie, served in individual ramekins and topped with a buttery buff pastry; baked macaroni and cheese and smoked salmon served on Oscar statuette-shaped cracker.
The chef offered a taste of his exciting new menu items this year, including Moroccan spiced Wagyu short rib topped with a parmesan funnel cake; taro root tacos with shrimp, mango, avocado and chipotle aioli; gnocchetti with braised mushrooms and cashew cream; and lobster corn dogs (a personal favorite). Gold-dusted truffle popcorn and homemade pretzels add to the list of savory dishes, and three different salads like a baby beet salad with goat cheese yogurt, granola and citrus and bitter greens will also be served.
Puck told reporters there will be something on the menu for everyone, including vegan options like a carrot-juice infused pasta, which he prepared live. He gave a sneak peak at the frozen treats made with liquid nitrogen before noting that the offerings were inspired by the eclectic cuisine of Los Angeles, which he said reflected the diverse nature of the films nominated this year.
At the big event, celebrities will sip on Piper-Heidsieck champagne, Francis Ford Coppola wine and cocktails featuring The Hilhaven Lodge whiskey, while indulging in a 2,600 lb. ice raw bar with poke, sushi and shellfish. But the most impressive display perhaps is the dessert. The pastry team made up of Kamel Guechida, Monica Ng and Jason Lemmonier will offer a menu of playful items served at multiple stations. Lava cakes, seven flavors of gelato and sorbet, vanilla and red velvet waffles and Takoyaki cake balls will all be made to order. The chocolate buffet includes sweets like caramel cappuccino Oscar lollipops, Oreo cookie s’more domes and chocolate bonbons in “movie theater flavors” like Sour Patch Kids, Red Hots and Goobers.
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Puck will use locally sourced ingredients and sustainable seafood to feed the 1,500 guests who will attend — and plans to donate all unused prepared foods to Chefs to End Hunger.
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As for the decor, Academy governor and acclaimed costume designer Jeffrey Kurland explained, “The theme of this year’s Governors Ball is ‘magical transformation.’ As they enter the Ball, guests will transition from a dazzling sea of red to a tricolor motif of eye-popping gold and red on an infinite blanket of white. The unique design of the space has been meticulously created to celebrate Oscar gold.”
The show’s host, Jimmy Kimmel, told PEOPLE he once snuck in to the elaborate, glitzy after party. “I think it was in 1995,” he said. After hanging around for nine hours to get in, the late-night host found himself at John Travolta’s table.
“We sat down with John Travolta and we told him we snuck in and he was laughing,” he says. “[Travolta] said, ‘Well, did you guys have anything to eat?’ and we said no and he got the waiter to bring us food.”
The 89th Academy Awards airs live on ABC on Sunday, Feb. 26, with a 7 p.m. ET preshow and 8:30 p.m. ceremony.