The pairing of food and wine has been going on for centuries, but in recent times, Adelaide has seen an emerging trend of multiple course dinners matched with specific wines from a winemaker. The Oliver’s Taranga Vineyards are possibly one of the first to be established in South Australia back in 1841 and are well known for their ultra-premium wines. When a winery with so much history joins forces with one of the best restaurants in Adelaide, we knew we were in for a real treat. Adelaide Food Central, along with other guests, were invited to the Oliver’s Taranga Wine Dinner at Jolley’s Boathouse for a matching food and wine dinner.
One of the Shared Platters we started off with was the Char Grilled Adelaide Hills Asparagus with tea smoked mussel, nduja and saffron vinaigrette. The asparagus was firm but soft with subtle smokey flavours. The accompanying sauce had the characteristics of a Mediterranean dish, particularly with the nduja, an Italian spreadable pork salami. The 2016 “Small Batch” Vermentino has aromas of sea spray and oyster shell, and complemented the seafood component in this dish.
In our opinion, the dish of the night was the Kingfish Sashimi with coconut, Thai basil, green chilli and finger lime in a nuoc cham sauce. The kingfish slices had a smooth and delicate texture and were accompanied by a medley of fresh Asian herbs. The classic nuoc cham dipping sauce was well balanced and was something a Vietnamese Mum would be proud of. A deliciously light and refreshing dish that matches perfectly with the 2016 “Small Batch” Vermentino.
The Caramelised Pork Belly with green papaya, chilli and peanut salad also got our approval. The slow cooked pork was firm but delicate with subtly sweet flavours. This was accompanied by a salad that was full of crispy and crunchy textures. As we all know, pork matches really well with something sweet and fruity, and the 2016 Fiano was the perfect candidate, particularly from the subtle hints of grapefruit on the palate.
The main was Miso Glazed Angus Beef with smoked eggplant, steamed broccolini and Asian black pepper sauce. The cuts of beef were completely lean and the pinkish hues in the centre indicated the meat was perfectly cooked. The eggplant was mushy and stringy with subtle smokey flavours. The elements of the dish on their own were bland, but were a lot better when combined with the black pepper sauce. The dish was matched well with the taste of forest berries and sweet spices from the 2014 “Small Batch” Grenache, and the rich savoury taste of black fruits from the 2013 Estate Shiraz.
The Rosettes of Tete de Moine Cheese with cabbage salad and fennel lavosh was something we’ve never had before. The Swiss cheese has been made for over 800 years and its literal translation means “monk’s head”. One reason behind the naming is that the cheese looks like the top of a monk’s head. The cheese itself had nutty characteristics and is commonly eaten with salads. The piece of lavosh added a nice crunchy texture while the drops of syrup provided much needed sweetness. The 2012 “HJ Reserve” Shiraz comes with fruity aromas and has a combination of dark chocolate and sweet spices on the palate. The wine itself would normally paired with a meat dish, but it went surprisingly well with the cheese.
For dessert, we had the Petit Fours which consisted of peanut brittle, passionfruit marshmallow, chocolate brownie and caramelised popcorn. We particularly liked the marshmallow with its fruity aroma and soft texture. Dessert was paired with the “Banished” Fortified Grenache, a drink that was both sweet in aroma and on the palate.
The Oliver’s Taranga Wine Dinner was a night of amazing food and wine. The view of the Torrens River alone would have been worth it but we were treated to something special. Adelaide Food Central would like to thank the staff at Jolley’s Boathouse for their food and hospitality, and Oliver’s Taranga for their delicious drops of wine. If an event like this comes up again, make sure you don’t miss out!
WHERE: 1 Jolleys Lane, North Adelaide