Yes. I really like food and wine. And food and wine people.
And it was AWESOME!!
So many vineyards were represented, all talking their wine and being generous with their tasting.
There were some standouts for me:
Black Estate – Riesling 2014
Dog Point – Vineyard Section 94 Sauvingnon Blanc 2013
Elephant Hill – Le Phant Blanc 2014
Kumeu River – Pinot Gris
Mt Difficulty – Bannockburn Rose 2014
Osawa Wines – Prestige Sauvignon Blanc 2011, Prestige Chardonnay 2013 and their Sticky was delicious.
Trinity Hill – GG Chardonnay 2013
Villa Maria – Keltern Chardonnay 2013, the Attorney Organic Pinot Noir 2013 and the Braided Gravels Organic Merlot 2013 were all outstanding.
And of course my current favorite vineyard, Misha’s. Their High Note Pinot Noir 2013, Starlet Sauvignon Blanc 2013 and the Limelight Riesling 2013 was simply superb. I’m glad I’ve finally managed to try the Riesling.
I love talking to the winemakers and getting a sense of their passion and craft. One thing I’ve noticed is that Chardonnay is definitely making a strong comeback and some of those I tasted were stunningly good.
Exciting times ahead for wine!
But this event wasn’t just about wine. It was about the wonderful world of food.
I enjoyed sitting in on a 1hr seminar, where chef Philippe Meyer talked about fermentation of food. How to make sauerkraut or kimchi. How to make ginger beer. It was great getting an insight into curing meats. This is something I’ve thought about and have never been brave enough to try. Perhaps now I will.
There was also an artisan food producers showcase.
Some of the exhibitors include:
Curious Croppers – I’ve never seen tomatoes like this. And they tasted amazing.
Love Cake – If you suffer from allergies but have a thing for cake then these are the products for you. The baked result doesn’t have a cardboard texture. They taste great! Definitely check out their website for more detailed information.
I’m not usually a fan of oatcakes or crackers etc. but these by Bonnie taste amazing. A little bit of brie on a cake with your coffee and your executive breakfast is done!
Waiwera Spirits were showing off their rums, vodka and gin. I love the idea that they’re developing these products as standalone ‘sippers’. You don’t need mixers with them. Savour them as you would a fine whiskey or tequila. Delicious.
Now these sauces are seriously good. I’d not come across Culley’s before. I do like trying hot sauce and I have friends that are collectors so I paid a little bit of attention. The heat, the flavours, the aftertaste – all were divine. I’ll be purchasing some of these in the near future.
This brand of Danish crackerbread, Line’s Knaekbrod is also a new discovery for me. It was brilliant talking to the makers. Line was a winner in the 2015 Cuisine Artisan awards and you can see why. Having tried these, I’ve already purchased more from Farro Fresh. It’s so good.
This event really was a fun way to spend a Sunday late-afternoon.
I’ve been giving it some thought. I am loving what this school is creating here, not only with the courses they’re providing, but especially the way they’re supporting local producers of incredibly high-quality food and wine. We are lucky to have them I think.