You know all about Iron Chef. The Chairman unveils a secret ingredient and competitors are challenged to come up with a multi-course meal on the spot.

But what about an Iron Eater challenge, where a secret ingredient is obscured throughout each course, and it’s the diner’s job to discern what that ingredient is?

Chef Nate Whiting has hosted four such dinners at Tristan, challenging his patrons to figure out just what it is they’re eating.

For instance, last month, he picked the strawberry, plating a “tomato risotto” that was no such thing. Instead of tomatoes, it was made entirely with strawberries. “It tasted just like tomatoes,” says Whiting. “It was wild. We like to play with textures and perceptions.”

He’s also done a rice dinner. “We did all kinds of different things. We dehydrated it and puffed it in a granola with foie gras crème brûlée,” he says. “We used it in the breading for calamari, and we used rice flour for dessert. Sometimes it’s hidden, and sometimes it’s right out in open; we served it as risotto in one course.”

For the next dinner, which is always held the third Tuesday of the month, Whiting has a hint for you, the ingredient is “kind of preserved.” Think on that, and then go ahead and make your reservations. The meal is wine-paired and is guaranteed to get you talking to your neighbors as you try to figure out what’s going on. Call (843) 534-2155 to make your reservations.