So a few weeks back… oh who am I kidding, back in late July(!) – (how did we get to September already?!), I was invited to attend the ‘Kangaroo Island’ dinner, the first of a handful of Regional Wine Dinners being held at the National Wine Centre for 2014 – there’s 2 more to mark in your calendars but we’ll get to that shortly. The purpose of these hosted wine dinners is to extend your knowledge, engage your palate and enhance your enjoyment of Australia’s many wine styles.
For the evening, we got to savour a selection of decadent food and wine from Kangaroo Island with the menu showcasing the local produce matched with regional wines prepared by the Wine Centre’s Executive Chef, Philip Pope. The dinner was hosted by winemakers Yale Norris of The Islander Estate Vineyards and Ross Trimboli of Hazyblur.
We started off with Greenlip KI abalone with wakame, black sesame and tobiko served in fancy spoons and paired with 2013 Hazyblur Pinot Gris. A refreshing and crunchy burst of flavours with a mouthful of abalone, Japanese seaweed, crunchy black sesame seeds and pops of the sea from the tobiko. Unfortunately, I found the seaweed to dominate the bite in terms of flavour and texture and the abalone was lost within it all.
Once guests were all seated and speeches had, we had our first course of wild caught KI garfish ceviche.
Wild caught KI garfish ceviche and buttered island crayfish, watermelon radish and garden peas
NV Hazyblur Blanc de Noirs L’Eclat Sparkling
2011 The Islander Estate Wally White Semillon
Such a pretty and vibrant looking plate! Delicate pieces of garfish ceviche with a medallion of buttered island crayfish, topped with bright and colourful watermelon radish, garden peas, fresh micro herbs and pops of tobiko. A light and well balanced entree that played with texture, flavours and colour.
Lamb breast, haloumi, white eggplant and tomato essence
2012 The Islander Estate ‘Old Rowley’ Shiraz Grenache
2013 Hazyblur Cabernet Sauvignon
The lamb breast was cooked to the brink of medium/well done with the centre still slightly pink but I found the meat to be a bit on the firm side. The lamb slices sat on a white eggplant mash and accompanied with haloumi slices which were a tad too dry and crumbly for my liking along with a very flavourful tomato essence and cherry tomatoes. Lovely presentation and a warm hearty main to combat the cold… plus the main was paired with not one, but two glasses of wine! (Same with the entree)
So much wine! And we were only up to main course!
Dessert was a different kind for the evening.
Island pure cassini, 12 month old (manchego style) with poached quince and wholemeal lavosh
2006 The Islander Estate ‘Investigator’ Cabernet Franc
A whole block of cheese for every person. A block! It felt and looked like a block! Or would you call it a slice? A wedge? A slab? Either way, I’ve never had such a big piece of cheese to myself in one sitting. Ever. I didn’t even think I’d go through half the piece… but what do you know… it wasn’t long and there was only a third left. Haha. I reluctantly left the rest alone which I’m sure my tummy will thank me for later.
We did end the night off on a sweet note with dried raspberry speckled chocolate pieces.
Sweet cravings satisfied. 🙂
Thanks to the lovely people from JP Media for the invite and kind hospitality, it was an enjoyable evening!
Want to attend a regional wine dinner within the coming months? There are 2 more!
September 24th – Tasmania
October 29 – McLaren Vale
All regional wine dinners are held on Wednesday evenings from 6.30pm and all tickets are priced at $120 per person. For online reservations click here or call the National Wine Centre Reception on 08 8313 3355.
National Wine Centre of Australia
Corner of Botanic & Hackney Road
Adelaide SA 5000
P 08 8313 3355