Easter ahead and Coonawarra

April 9, 2017

It is April, and Easter is almost upon us. Work has been insane, so we went looking today online to see if there was anything left anywhere; we passed on booking the last available accomodation at Arkaroola, mainly because it is all about getting there, planning and enjoying (sigh, some other time) and it is a project on its own and not so much about food and wine,  and Robe was booked out, Mt Gambier too, the Barn (le sigh), so we snagged one of the last accomodations in Penola. This is going to be a first for us staying @Penola. So Coonawarra here we come, Easter, yay!

Divine Cafe holds some nice brekkie memories, and Penola is a nice spot. Hollick upstairs is a nice restuarant, and we shall see if there are more discoveries to be had.  As to wineries..ohh…tough one.

We just received our wine box from Tscharke wines in the Barossa, and are sampling and exploring. More to come, but I can say with the reds, it has taken on a new direction. Very much more European if I may say so. Interesting.




Kassler cutlets from Angaston and asparagus plus….

April 1, 2017




We (Dh and I),  just love visiting the Angaston Market for ..well….anything. Today, we just loved the Kassler cutlets, smoked, and wonderful for any recipe! Just wonderful stuff. Yes, repetitive, but broccoli to chillis, to pineapple will work.

As an accompaniement, we have been lately, very involved in fermented veggies. Which honestly can be a lot of different veggies, but kohlrabi is one of those wonderful veggies that works in most parts of the world, as does any kind of cabbage, onion, and garlic&ginger, +chilipepper. Just wow.


How to make you own?



Having that sip…wine from SA

April 1, 2017

Hey it is April and almost daylight savings time, (which is Sunday) !


But….there is nothing like having sips, or gulps, or even a larger schluuuuurp of the wines at home. Especially recent purchases!


Alphabox & Dice.

Wonderful tasting in McLaren Vale. But as with any winery, wouldn’t you be annoyed if the wine you tasted, the wine you bought and then tasted at home, were …….DIFFERENT? Vasty different? Yes, light years!

That beautiful Grenache, called Tarot. Well, we bought four bottles, and as you are a proper winery..sorry serious cellar door,  selling your merchandise, you want the tasting to align with what your customers buy from your cellar door. Spritz????

Sorry Alphabox and Dice, your Grenache called Tarot does not match the taste/tasting offered at your cellar door. Spritz. This says Wild Yeast to me….and I like Wild Yeast ……..BUT…..it is then YOUNG, InSTABLE, and….therefore inconsistent.

WTF? Not what I want in a wine that I paid AUD 30 or thereabouts. Geez!

Nice @cellardoor, inconsistent@purchase.

After this, we opened an Eldridge Malbec 2014. All that you want in a wine. Lee told me onceuponatime that this was often mistaken for a Shiraz, and I can easily see why. No spritz, just good taste. Anything you want in a good consistent full bodied wine, with High Quality, and nice Taste,  even if you are a Shiraz lover. Just do it…OK. 😍 Eldredge

Tonnato tomato..ehhh..what? Tuna fish sauce goodness that goes with everything.

March 26, 2017

This is so much fun, I just had to share.

Being a mostly (on a day to day basis) non-native English speaker nowadays can be fun.

At lunch I frequent a small an interesting crowd, and we frequently talk about food and cooking.

We have been frequenting a local Italian restuarant called Red Ruby Flamingo enjoying their Manzo tonnato. Simple, delicious, fantastic, thinly sliced scotch fillet in a tuna fish sauce. That sauce….oh yum. So I tried to share, tell the dear lunch crowd about my findings, even brought a nice bowl of it to share. Well, turns out that tonnato can be misheard as toMato, and since the sauce itself is greyish, well, it is fun contradictory and gave our lunch crowd a good laugh.

So, recipe..I like it to be tart n lemony, so,

Juice of at least one lemon.

SA capers in salt, try Central Market ( I am in Adelaide, so we go there a lot), one tablespoon(scrape off salt) more if you like.

Anchovies fillets the kind in a small glass jar ( 5, don’t use the sunflower oil). If you use more the sauce will taste of anchovies and be very salty which….under certain circumstances is very good. This jar could be good for three batches.

Mayonnaise, make your own or buy good quality, no soy, corn etc oil.  100 ml or half a cup.

Two small cans of tuna, chunks. 95 grammes in each can.

Virgn olive oil, 50 ml or half a cup.

Mix and blitz.

Add salt if needed, I never needed extra given the salty capers and anchovies.


Eat enjoy, love…as a dip sauce for chips

As a sauce for grilled salmon

With thinly sliced scotch fillet

With chunks of bread because you can

Grilled calamari

Any grilled fish really.

With sufficient lemon juice, keeps at least a week, but it won’t last that long.






Vongole, pipis and thoughts

March 26, 2017

Hello again!

Realised that I forgot to post about the pipi, versus vongole cooking.

Now, pipis or cockles is the name given to a bivalve mollusc found here in South Australia (yees, mollusc…snail), and it is a popular pasttime for the whole family, also known as ‘cockling’link

We saw people digging for pipis some three weeks ago when visiting Murray Mouth for some 4wd on the beach. No time for digging besides, temps dropped below twenty and it was windy and the weather was…..very unexpected, overcast and getting colder.

Anyhow, the vongole shopping was prompted by our visit to Jolley’s Boathouse the other night. We had Goolwa pipis, served in a lush, strong flavourful, tweaked by chilipepper overwhelming sauce. Very nice sauce, except it sort of took over, but the strange part was that the mussels/pipis themselves were so strong in flavour it bowled me over, so I could see why the serving sauce was so strong. Asked how they were cooked, and was told that they were first steamed open and then coated with the sauce.

Hm. First time I cooked vongole (may have been pipis) I used a white wine that we didn’t like very much. The mussels agreed with us. A strong mussel flavour that lingered.

Second time…used a GOOD white wine, success. Strong flavour there but different.

Now, with the visit to Samtass at Central Market, we decided between pipis or vongole, we chose vongole, ie a smaller mussel.

A common compaint you will hear a lot is..sand. Firstly, let them sit in salt water in a large bowl for a couple of hours. This will make the vongole/pipis ‘puff’ the sand out of their shells, they will feel the salt eater and open up a bit. Secondly, the shells must be scrubbed, hard, thoroughly before cooking. All the green algae and the black stains…get rid of them.

Wine for cooking, I had an opened bottle of Chenin blanc from Gascoigne at hand (Vintage Cellars), so heated a skillet so the copper turned blueish, dumped the cleaned vongole in there, added a generous dollop of wine….too generous, killed all the heat 😅 waited until the heat returned, cooked the vongole until all shells had opened, removed them and the juices from the skillet, added some olive oil and chopped garlic (three large cloves),  some dried chili flakes(approx a tea spoon) , whiff of salt, gave it a minute, then added some finely chopped Cavolo Nero (Black kale) and a dollop f the pasta water (we went gluten free),, cooked while stirring for another minute, then added the ongole and juices back in, a hand ful of finely chopped flat leaf parsley, some lemon zest, some pasta, stirred like a mad woman, then served.

600 grammes vongole, and 200 grammes pasta was roughly enough for four people unless they have very hearty appetites.

Served with some more Chenin blanc. Yum.

Smaller mussel, little less meat, but….meat is strong and sweet, and a delight served this way. We were in seventh heaven. The Chenin blanc comes from Vintage Cellars, couldn’t find it on their website. Strongly recommend a visit if you are close by. We cleaned out the one in North Adelaide, so you have Central market and Norwood left to try 😆 oh, and it was on sale as well 😀

Sunday afternoon pesto baked salmon tweaked recipe

March 26, 2017

Hooray for long weekends!

We have now come to Sunday, and F1 in Melbourne, listening with half an ear, getting a bit aggravated with one of the commentators on channel TEN who insists pronouncing Sebastian Vettel’s last name as if he was French. News, he is not…it is pronounced with an ‘f’ and no emphasis on the latter part.

We bought some ‘salmon tail ends’ from Samtass, and decided we would give the following recipe a try Salmon recipe in Swedish with a couple of tweaks, here is the amended recipe:

Four salmon tail ends ( 400 grammes), Praise mayonnaise from Foodland ( with whole egg and olive oil), Woolies shredded mozarella in a bag (because I didn’t have 50 grammes of parmesan at home), Bulla creme fraiche. Original recipe calls for mayo or creme fraiche, we ended up using a little less than two cups in total of 50-50 may and creme fraiche. 2 table spoons of pesto (green). Here I happily used my own.

My pesto recipe;

One bunch of flat leaved parsley, and roughly the same amount Cavolo Nero (Black kale), a handful of assorted nuts (from a. nut mix, mostly walnuts, hazelnuts, almonds and macadamia). One small whole garlic, two heaped table spoons of marinated sun dried tomato strips (easier to mix), extra virgin olive oil (Cornucopia Farming in Barossa ), and the wonderful pink salt fromMurray River salt . Roasted two red capsicums, and added in a container, mixed it to perfection, sterilised two glass jars in the oven, saved the leftovers for the salmon recipe.

I like my pestos to be dry, and then add some olive oil on top to seal, in a cold fridge they can last me a month. Pesto mixed with mashed potatoes is yum too!


Place the salmon tails in a greased oven proof pan, skin down. Salt and pepper to taste. I used some more of that olive oil for greasing btw. Add the mayo-creme fraiche-pesto-mozarella mix on top, and then set the oven for 180-200 degrees, bake/grill until fish is cooked and cheese is browned. Serve with wilted spinach, or steamed broccoli, a fresh green salat.

Next time…our own home cooked chilisaucd instead of pesto. Must be another hit.


Serve with a crisp white wine such as a Savignon blanc. We enjoyed it with some sparkly, Cremant de Bourgogne. The Chardonnay grapes gives just the right combination to offset the cheese and the pesto.

A little drive in McLaren Vale

March 25, 2017

After yesterday’s wonderful explorations, it was decided this morning to go to Central Market to look for mussels. Yesterday’s Goolwa pipi dish at Jolley’s Boathouse made us yearn for a repeat, so this morning we picked up….not Goolwa pipis, but Vongole instead. Let’s see how that cooks up.

As it was still early, we went for a drive to Willunga, the Saturday morning market is just so fabulous. Picked up some lovely herbs, a large bottle of olive oil, didn’t see any chilepeppers alas. Anyhow, when in McLaren Vale, why not do some wine tasting.

Went for lunch at SC Pannell, and tasted their new 2016 release of  Grenache, Shiraz and Touriga. Fabulous food, we had the lamb ragu ravioli, the triple cooked chips that were yummy as anything crisp and soft on the inside, and we enjoyed the view from the patio, looking down at the vines. Very damp and muggy day though, lots of grey clouds. The wine is young but oh so promising, and I can taste a bit of marzipan. Love wines with that bitter almond marzipan taste. And berries too. Yum. Going to hide it for a bit until it settles down. Tasted their Dead End Tempranillo, it has settled down and matured a bit since we were there for their Day of the Dead release party.

2016 New Release SC Pannell

Feeling happy and a bit warm, we headed down the road and stopped at a winery we have never been to before. Alphabox and Dice

They make wine by the alphabet ♥️ and they had some lovelies for tasting. Their Prosecco is just wonderful, their Grenache terrific, reminds me so much of the Grenache Whistler in the Barossa used to make before rebranding a couple of years ago when the younger generation took over. This Grenache tastes of PINE, just love it. Four bottles 😃 came home with us, the wine is called Tarot. New Grenache fave, spot on. Very like a Pinot noir…a good Pinot, without the mushy sweetness that can sometimes take over here in SA. Strongly recommended. Don’t expect that Grenache to last long in our house.

We were really impressed by their Barbera, quite possibly one of the best SA Barbera we have found so far. Goes by the name of Enigma. Smooth, lovely. Yes, the collection at home was just enhanced, why do you ask?

Tasted the Xola as well, grape called Aglianico, also new, apparently originally from Greece. That wine…mm…special. Starts out velvety smooth and then, lots of tannins and tobacco. Dualfaced indeed. Interesting. Not your usual run of the mill.

Then, tne day just got hotter and muggier so we headed home and turned the air con on. Phew!

Various eateries in North Adelaide

March 24, 2017

Greetings Dear People,


Hot humid Mad busy March. Nevertheless, we have been visiting a couple of restaurants. Despite living in a restaurant hot spot, we visited the Curious Squire in Nth Adelaide for the first time today.

Let me explain….we have walked past many times, and it is in a shady windy part of O’Connell street, so it was on a hot muggy day like today we felt like taking the plunge.

I had the Buffalo Wings with shoestring fries, Dh had the American pork ribs. Seeing an impressive American smoker on the premises, we had high expectations.

The wings were served with a special variety of Ranch dressing. And I loved them, they        were almost as good as the Buffalo wings and Blue Cheese Dressing at the Lobethal Bierhaus. But the American ribs”…….disappointing. LEt me put it this way, we have been to the US and especially Colorado where they take these kind of things seriously and no. Acceptable only, do not quite melt with tenderness, and please dear people at Curious Squire. membranes must be removed BEFORE grilling. Do not leave membranes on bones please.

Beer.. we had an APA, and then an IPA. Both ok, but not fabulous and too much taste of Brown Boring Beer for me. So, overall, ok, but not outstanding. Lobethal Bierhaus ticks the boxes of good local micro brewery, with good Buffalo wings/food, and nothing much in the way of Boring Brown.

To top it of at the Curious Squire, there was a magpie. Antagonised the boxes with napkins aggressively tryng to attack its reflection, and then it tried to mate with the stacked cutlery on each table, several times, climbing all over the stacked cutlery on the adjacent tables, several times, over and over. Enough to make you wipe down your cutlery several times before eating, and then wonder over the next guests and the hygiene. And when eating messy finger foods, a bowl 🍚 of water or sanitising serviettes are always appreciated and so are toothpicks. None of this was offered or present.


So….dinner…we made it to Jolley’s Boathouse. Wonderful food, nice staff, patient staff. They let us try a multitude of wines before we found a good one. Brr..not all can be blamed on a mere difference in opinion!

We had six entrees, no mains. All lovely, except for the pork belly. Intensely sweet (sugar) with various greens and Kim chee, and we were told that this is Korean food, hrm…..I saw lately that one ☝️ in five in Asia are in risk of or has diabetes, so small wonder. Disregard the pork belly and the Vietnamese Corander that tastes like. Burdock on steroids, the rest was lovely. Would go back in a heartbeat. Tomic Hill Chardonnay was lovely. We were told it was ‘oldstyle’ Chardonnay. I excersised a bit of my opinionated self and said that the socalled modern Chardonnays, which are as tongue curdling sour as a Clare valley Riesling, and contained almost as much oak as a peaty whiskey, and with no smoothness at all,well. are plain awful. And if that is called a modern Chardonnay, Rebecca Willson at Bremerton winery in Langhorne creek makes a lovely modern CHardonnay, without all that sour acid nonsense.  And Taylor’s St Andrews is superior, hands down.

Ok, think we made our point. Time for the rest of the weekend!

Mad month of March

March 12, 2017



Has been a hasty quick stressful start to the new year, which is why it is mid March on the blog. Some milestones, we are very close to our citizenship ceremony, which is fantastic! I shall see about photos.

On wines and good food, lots and plenty has happened. Went to a nice winery close to Lobethal in the Adelaide Hills by the name of Golding, and came home with their wonderful white wine blend by the name of Mixed Bunch. You know, quintessential white whine golden goodness, perfect allrounder, a good drop that everyone likes. Yup, that was from 2012, and is /was definitely worth it.


Then Chardonnay. I must admit, I have been on a Chardonnay kick lately. And let’s get real here, what is referred to here as the modern version of Chardonnay which is all oak (lets go through a package of tongue spatulas to scrape off the oak), and acid (oak leaves are high in tannins and acids), and thin because oak and acid are bold tastes, isn’t where I am going with this. So, having said all that, let me contradict myself with Bremerton’s Battonage Chardonnay 2014, Rebecca Willson knows what she is doing, oak AND creamy. Wow.

Then Taylor, yep Taylor in Auburn Clare valley. They have something wonderful called Taylor Made 2016 which has oak and sweet tropical fruit and creamy finish, then in their TWP range ( The Winemaker’s Project)another sweeter(think fruit and strawberries) but still creamy full bodied Chardonnay, and finally the flagship St Andrews Chardonnay which is the silky elegant Chardonnay with a sumptious fantastic finsh. 2015.

Pick one? Nope. But let’s leave the oak and the tannins in the bog, it is wonderful in whiskey.

Onto another dear wine variety, and our latest love is Pinot noir from Rileys of Eden valley, 2015. Their 2016 has just been issued, and I think our bottles must be suffering from shock still, it has a bit left to go before coming close to their 2015. But hoping…in the meanwhile, hang onto those 201(!

What else? Um…mostly going with old favourited. Eldredge Blue Chip Shiraz, that wonderful Cabernet Sauvignon from Pikes also in Clare Valley. Been trying to make a dent in some Tscharke as well as there seems to be a lot of them about.


Food; well, have just made the first ever tonnato sauce, and I don’t understand why this wonderful recipe has escaped us all those years.


link recipe


Doubled the lemon juice, and served with lemon basil on the side, heaps of it. Excellent with ovengrilled salmoncovered in chili sauce. Kipfler potatoes, and you are set.

Wonderful on a rainy day in Adelaide.


Merry Christmas!

December 22, 2016

Hello World!

Been a busy past six months since I posted, but here I am! We are both well, have been to a number of wineries and restaurants, and have really enjoyed Life. We bought a new 4WD vehicle, and have been on some trips exploring the new possibilities.

And this is a good opportunity since we are close to Stressmas to wish everyone Happy Holidays!




Lovely Deep Creek on a very very windy day!