Category Archives: Wine and Food

Oct 10 2011

A Weekend Discovering the Wines and Food of Orange: Day 2

Posted on October 10, 2011 | By merrill@cellarit.com

Day two began with coffee and breakfast at Benson’s Cafe (the best place for coffee in Orange!) and a trip out to Ross Hill. We were greeted by father and son team Peter and James Robson, who took us on a tour of their immaculately kept winery (originally an old apple packing shed), and poured us samples of almost the entire Ross Hill range.

While not certified organic, Peter and James believe that minimising the use of commercial preparations in the vineyard is key to expressing the unique characteristics of their special terroir. Vines are hand-pruned, grapes are hand-picked and insecticides aren’t used. At an elevation of almost 800 metres and with rocky, free-draining soils over a 410 million year old limestone base, the pair believe they have one of the best sites in Orange, especially for red varieties.

Since 2009 the wines have been made by Phil Kerney and his wife Rochelle and marketed under two labels: the higher priced Pinnacle Series and the more moderately priced Family Series. All of the wines were excellent, but for me the stand-outs were the refined, yet full bodied, wild yeast fermented Pinnacle Chardonnay 2010, the rich, savoury and elegant Pinnacle Shiraz 2009 and the Bordeaux blend Isabelle & Jack Cabernet Franc Merlot 2009.

Next we headed down to Fiorini’s where Italian chefs Patrizia Fiorini and Marina Fedeli delighted us with their home-style Italian cooking served on shared plates in a brightly coloured little cottage decorated with exuberant Van Gogh prints. More superb examples of Orange wines were chosen to complement a wide assortment of dishes including warm olives, lightly fried calamari, smoked mozzarella, locally sourced garlic mushrooms and a veal schnitzel topped with a ‘to die for’ truffle and gorgonzola sauce!

Wine selections were the De Salis Wild Fumé Sauvignon Blanc 2010, the 2011 Brangayne of Orange Chardonnay, the 2008 Mayfield Vineyard Private Reserve Orange Pinot Noir,.. [Read More]

Nov 11 2010

Danes: Making Waves in Wine and Food!

Posted on November 11, 2010 | By merrill@cellarit.com

René Redzepi is Head Chef and co-owner of noma in Copenhagen, Denmark, which was recently named the world’s best restaurant. Peter Sisseck owns Dominio de Pingus in Ribera del Duero, Spain and makes Pingus – one of the most celebrated wines in the world!

Both are remarkably good looking, intellectual, famous and youngish Danish men who share a surprisingly similar philosophy towards their respective arts.

Redzepi sees it as “a personal challenge to help bring about a revival of Nordic cuisine and let its distinctive flavours and particular regional character brighten up the world.”.. [Read More]

Sep 09 2010

Why Great Wine Promotes Healthy and Good Food!

Posted on September 09, 2010 | By merrill@cellarit.com

If you follow food trends, you would have noticed the explosion of interest in sourcing food locally. This phenomena has been sparked not only by a desire to reduce ‘food’ miles – ie. the distance food has to travel to reach our tables. More importantly, buying local is about promoting sustainability, self-reliance, seasonal and indigenous produce, and supporting family-owned farms that are growing food of very high quality.

Not surprisingly, premier Australian winery restaurants have been at the forefront in promoting regional cuisine and sourcing locally grown produce… [Read More]