Posts Tagged ‘food’

Wine and more wine from Clare Valley!

June 11, 2017



Yesterday’s trip was full of wine! And sun, it was a glorious day in Clare Valley, much sunnier and nicer than Adelaide. And with Sea and Vines ongoing in McClaren Vale, it is perfect to visit other regions.

Taylors..oh yes. Long weekend sale, so we arrived early and immdiately laid our hot hands on a box of museum release Jaraman Chardonnay. The find was the Riesling thoughEden Valley grown from 2004 for 75 dollars for six bottles. Smooth, elegant Mosel style, wonderful, no tongue curdling Watervale ‘mild corrosive for cleaning reluctant teeth’. Our friends who asked us to buy Gewurztraminer if they had any on sale will be thrilled! If not, that box is MINE!

Then there were TWP Montepulciano, and a nice Merlot, and then we got three kinds of Cab sav, 2010 Jaraman, 2009 and 2010 Taylor’s own brand Cab sav. The Jaraman is made from Coonawarra grapes, and is absolutely fabulous! Oh and there were quite a few people there ūüėč and no, we did not buy any Shiraz. We did buy a bit for friends and colleagues, I am sure that they will be thrilled too.

After that…phew….we went to Eldredge and sampled their beautiful Malbec and checked in to see how their Blue Chip Shiraz was going. We were joking about the fact that we have their 2015 vintage of Blue Chip at home, the bottles are hoarded, and then we go to their cellar door during the year to sample and find out how the wine develops. We did have a long nice conversation about the next edition of their Gilt Edge Shiraz, one of the best Shirazes out there. A year away, le sigh. We do have some 2007 left.

Then Skillogalee for a late lunch, and wow, they have released a 2015 Gewurztraminer, which achieved a whopping 95 points from James Halliday, and whilst I may not always agree with the rating but this time, this is hands down one of the best and most powerful fragrant aromatic Gewurztraminer here in Oz. Get¬†it¬†before it is too late. Who cares if it is Winter! It took on pasta, anchovies, capers, tomato…..without batting an eyelid ( we had the roasted garlic and anchovy dip with Cabernet soaked toast as a starter, then a wonderful Vitelli tonnato with capers-fried,¬†recipe¬†and then a small pasta dish …..with the Gewurztramner, what else?).

Whilst in Clare, we did what we almost aleays try to do…visit a new winery, so this time we went to Jeanneret. I did a double take because their tasting list was very similar to Eldredge, but ( didn’t sample the Rieslings)…..too much sugar, everywhere. The poor Malbec! The Grenache blend..vojne. But Jeanneret is also the home of the Clare Valley brewing company, ‚ô•ÔłŹ so not all lost.

A long wine inspired day. And smashing food at Skillogalee. It is June so middle of Winter in the Southern Hemisphere, which means it gets dark at six. And it is cold.


More Easter weekend winery visits!

April 18, 2017

Hello again,


So we went down to the Limestone Coast wineries over Easter by way of Coonalpyn and Keith. We had seen Coonalpyn featured on Landline, so it was with delight we saw on Good Friday the amount of people stopping and admiring the painitngs and sampling the baked goods and other offerings in Coonalpyn.¬†Here¬†is a link to what was happening earlier this year.¬†Liege waffles¬†is of course another reason to stop there ‚ėÄÔłŹ

Stopping in Keith we were a bit disappointed to find that¬†Henry and Rose cafe¬†wasn’t open, neither on Good Friday nor on Easter Sunday, but hey…hopefully they will be next time.

On Easter weekend, many wineries may crack open their more ancient vi tages, and Patrick of Coonawarra was no exception. When visiting wineries for the second or nth time, we always try to go to at least a new one. Patrick fit the bill, also, cider from local apples and not at all sweet would be a great temptation! And indeed it was, made with champagne yeast, very bubbly, or should I say effervescent ūüėč absolutely fab with food.¬†Link

We tasted some great wines but it is the cider thst stood out. And the aged Risling, just wow and wow. Great! And I was by now pining for lunch and rest and a respite from wine tasting, so we sort of missed out on buying their Savignon blanc fume which angers me a bit because it was truly European in flavour with a nice twist. Exploding with glowy green flavour, a bit emerald or peridot green, not beryl green. Oh my! Of course there are other means but there is so much more fun to be had to do it on e day whilst at the geographic region where it all happens.

Well, the beauty of staying in Penola means that everything is nearby, and takes no time at all, so we hung out at Ottelia for a coffeee. Ottelia is of course another cellar door and restaurant in the heart of Coonawarra, and we are talking the village of Coonawarra, fabulous pizzas(we had none this time), and lovely wine, Chardonnay and Pinot noir, and yes, their wines are from mainly Mt Gambier. Wonderful to find in the middle of Coonawarra! Just coffee and something small to nibble on. Ottelia

Finally…lunch, late luncheon, at Hollick upstairs.

And wine tasting, Hollick makes great wine. Hollick also makes great food. Of all their good wines, their Barbera stands out, as a wine that can, despite its youth stand up to a steak, to Kangaroo, to tomato, flavourful salats, and blue cheese. Barbera

If I was to buy ONE red at Hollicks, it would be this one because versatile, good, but don’t expect a Shiraz or a Cab sav. Barber is simply, Barbera, and these guys make a really good one. Ok, we bought this one plus their Tempranillo. As vintage cellar members ,we enjoyed 20% off, so, why not.

What a wonderful day with food and wine. And it was my first kangaroo, with plenty of lemon myrtle and … sesame seeds, yellow beets, and a compote. Quandong? Yummy.

Getting back to work today was truly hard. And I am thinking Mount Benson and Robe next time, the Museum event is apparently in July where the older vintages are sampled and sold. Or…Southern Flinders. Langhorne creek in August.

Choices choices!

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 ūüėÖ 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 ūüėÜ oh, and it was on sale as well ūüėÄ

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.

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.


Food and wine weekend

June 5, 2016

Hello World!


It was a busy weekend. First of all, Dh had a birthday on Saturday, so I decided to make him a cake. I know, I know, quite a few loving wives do that, or they buy ir Dhs something¬†nice. I like to imagine myself to be a discerning foodie with opinions, but…however…yes. I can bake sour dough bread that is good, but cake, cookies and especially for important holidays, ouch!

But this year, I braved my fears and made him¬†Nigella’s Nutella cake. I don’t like Nutella, being a dedicted chocolate fan who hates sickly sweet treats, but this seemed to tick most of my boxes. Of course, it had to be made with Lindt chocolate, and I love my chocolate with rum, so it became a version of the original recipe, and a very nice version too. Discovered that one of the Lindt chocolates that I bought was in fact Intense Mint instead of the 70%, and I just hate the mint so….it all came together ( hate or not) and was..fantastic. Can’t taste the Nutella, it is just wonderful. Used local Jersey Double cream, and there was bliss. I offered to take the leftovers with me to work, and Dh got a very proprietary look in his eyes. Ok, guess not. The Intense Mint was just the ticket with the rum. Oh well. Life usually loves to dish out those is like…express a strong opinon on something and Life will make you change your stance.

No added sugar.


So, we also went away for the weekend, ducked out of the hustle and bustle on Friday, and went to Currency Creek, south of Adelaide, I think of it as being wedged inbetween Langhorne Creek and McLaren Vale. Yes, it is about wine! In reality, Currency Creek is not far from Lake Alexandrina. We stayed at One Paddock it is a winery, and a good getaway spot, and DH wanted to try out his new fab lens and some astrophotography, and I had a hankering for a fibery weekend in peace and quiet.

Well….we ended up eating cake, and visiting two of our fave wineries, Rusticana and Bremerton.

Rusticana….a wonderful winery with the for South Australia unusual grapes Durif and Zinfandel. Dh had sort of hoped to pick up a sparkling Durif on his birthday, but it turns out the vintage was sold out and the new not ready yet. Let’s be honest here, we both aren’t too fond of that speciality you will find in Australia, ie sparkling Shiraz. Often using grapes of lesser quality and heavily flavoured with a fortified wine, a sparkling Shiraz can be a wonderful but deceptive mouthful, with a deadly hangover. And it can make you tipsy….quickly. One wonderful place for sparkling Shiraz that is recommended is Primo Estate in McLaren Vale, but one glass, no more. Now Durif, sparkling, is wonderful for us who stay away from sparkling Shiraz. Yes, even sparklign Shiraz haters can find something to love with the Durif.

All those words, and what we found was a beautiful new vintage of Durif and Zinfandel, 2012, both. Better than our memory of 2010, and so mellow, round and flavourful. Of course,% close to 16.5, it is like no other wine, Grenache may at time be like this….and this is how Rusticana makes their wines. Just wonderful. But no sparkling Durif, yet. To be bottled.

We inquired about the museum wine weekend and were told it may be at the beginning of August this year. Some fond memories of last year, so we will be keeping our eyes peeled! Musem wine tasting at Rusticana is special, and overwhelming, the wines are so good and powerful and in a league of their own.

And yes, beautiful dips and horseradish condiments can be had there as well. Beautiful view and a fab garden. If visting Langhorne Creek, and you had to pick just one winery to visit, this would be the one. Always!

Our trip went on to Bremerton another beautiful winery in Langhorne Creek. Tamblyn is perhaps the one I like the most of their wines, and the Malbec a close second, and alas, some of the Batonnage range was sold out. Had a lovely pizza lunch, and left, feeling very full and happy. Can really recommend Bremerton, their wines and souvenir side is outstanding. And when we went to their wine tasting during the museum weekend, we were so blown away by their older wines.

After those two wineries, it was time to return back to One Paddock in Currency Creek, and to do some wine tasting there as well. We did have Lake Breeze on our wish list but some other time.

Read more about what Tim & Rachel has done to upgrade One Paddock and turn it into a memorable  place to vist, and why you should pay them a visit, the place is truly spectacular, and secluded, whilst close to everything from Victor Harbour to Langhorne creek and McLaren Vale. We ended up doing a tasting, and settled down in front of a friendly fire with a glass each of their Moscato, despite being only about four years old, had a nice aroma reminiscent of roses. It goes truly well with their cheese platter.

Sunday became a rainy misty and cold ( brr) day, so we returned to Adelaide to hunker down.

Cooking Puy/French lentils and finding out ( online) about Canada’s status as one of the world’s largest lentil growers and exporters. Yes, the taste of these lentils beats ¬†anything I have ever had before, and what can I say…there is more to lentils than one would imagine, and this was from our local Foodland, clearly labelled Canada.

Our lunch boxes next week will be about slow cooked beef cheeks, leftovers from Osso bucco, home made stock, and cooked French lentils with Roma tomatoes and corinder leaf.


Next weekend……Sea and vines S C Pannell Day of the Dead End