Dining with the wines of NZ winery Jackson Estate

Oct 20, 13 Dining with the wines of NZ winery Jackson Estate

Posted by in Food and Wine, New Zealand wine

A few weeks ago, I attended a dinner hosted by John Stichbury, owner of New Zealand winery, Jackson Estate and his head winemaker, Matt Patterson-Green. I remember sampling a few of Jackson Estates wines in the past and quite liked them so I was looking forward to the dinner and tasting. I like New Zealand sauvignon blanc although you have to be careful what you buy because there is a lot of boring sauvignon blanc cluttering the shelves. John told me over dinner that  Jackson Estate have always prided themselves on quality and have never compromised this idea. In his opinion, there are “too many wines that are boring as hell!” I couldn’t agree more. To back up his claims, we had a tasting of Jackson Estate wines with dinner at Sushino. A Brazilian/Japanese fusion restaurant, the food was an interesting combination of flavours. My favourite wines of the evening were the Gum Emperor 2010 pinot noir and the Grey Ghost Sauvignon Blanc 2011. John described The Grey Ghost as a  “winemakers wine,” putting s.blanc into oak is always slightly controversial and with the Grey Ghost, it goes into French oak barrels (though they are 6 years old) for an extended amount of time. The result is a smoky, flinty almost steely wine with a lot of complexity and texture. They also make this wine using the wild ferment which might also go towards giving it that elusive quality which gives it it’s name. The Gum Emperor is a single vineyard wine and his named after the stand of Gum Emperor trees that act as a wind break for the vines. An intense and brooding pinot, it has a lush body, silky smooth with medicinal, herbal notes on the nose and a striking minerality on the palate. Excellent, ripe fruit followed by balancing acidity make this a delicious wine on it’s own or paired with food. We were served Miso glazed lamb chops which were perfectly cooked and excellent with the wine. A very...

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Jackson Estate Pinot Noir at the Stolen supper club

Somehow, I have become a foodie. How did this happen? One minute I’m just bebopping along, doing my wine thing, next thing I know, I’m reviewing Michelin starred restaurants and supper clubs. I suppose it shouldn’t be a surprise as food and wine are meant to go together and like so  many of my wineblogging breathren, I do think that wine should be drunk with food close at hand. I have to say though that the wine always takes centre stage, although I do make an effort to think about the food too. Supper Clubs, great idea but a bitch to find! Luiz and I must have spent 10 minutes looking for the Stolen Supper Club in Notting Hill. Can you blame us, here is the door, sans door number: Our charming hostess, Mia (aka Bonnie) greeted us at the door and led us into a currently being renovated flat, cue lots of exposed ceilings and plasterwork. The only thing fully in place was the brand new kitchen where her accomplice Leandro (Clyde) was busy preparing our dinner. It was looking good as she led us past the oven and into a lovely garden where the other guests were chatting and drinking. The Stolen Supper Club’s USP so to speak is that they ‘steal’ famous chef’s  recipes to re-create their dining experience in their supper club at home. This week they were replicating Mark Hix’s menu and due to the fact that Mia had spent 10 years in the London restaurant scene, Mark is a friend and kindly donated Hix napkins for the evening as well as plenty of info on his restaurants and the aperitif for the evening. The menu was from Hix Oyster and Chop House and we duly started with oysters on the half shell fresh from Billingsgate Market that morning, served with a bloody mary granita on top and naked for the purists. I liked the bloody mary granita but I like my oysters unadorned  by anything but a splash...

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