Cloudy Bay Pinot & Duck Trail will return this year throughout all of the month of July to the eastern seaboard with a line-up of Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane’s finest restaurants.
At a sneak preview progressive lunch in Sydney this week our Cloudy Bay Pinot and Duck Trail started at Toko, with signature duck dishes matched to the 2010 Cloudy Bay Pinot Noir. With our small group was our host for the lunch, Cloudy Bay winemaker, Nicholas Blampied-Lane. Yet it was Sommelier Daniel Jacobson from Toko who had the first say:
“Pinot Noir is the most unique and individual of the ‘mainstream’ red varietals. While it’s not uncommon to mistake cabernet for merlot, or even shiraz at times, Pinot Noir stands on its own. The unique blend of bright red berries like ripe cherry, and savory aromas of mushroom, forest floor, and leather, are matched best with gamey complex foods. As such; Duck is a fantastic meat to pair up with Pinots like the Cloudy Bay. With a meat as rich and fatty as duck, it is important to have a wine with proper acid structure to cut through that richness, yet it must also have strong enough flavours to not get drowned out by the rich duck meat.
Our Miso marinated duck breast blends fantastically with the 2010 Cloudy Bay Pinot Noir, the earthiness of the wine melds seamlessly with the gamey rich duck, with the acidity perfect for cutting through the lovely fatty rich layer of duck that coats your mouth.”
It was for Sydney, an increasingly rare fine day, though Nick Blampied-Lane, heard a (later confirmed) whisper that back in his Cloudy Bay home, it had started to snow. That’s what I call cool climate wines.
He’s seriously impressed with the 2010 vintage (and foretells of signs that this year will also be a cracker.)
2010 Cloudy Bay Pinot Noir tasting notes:
Our 2010 Pinot Noir is deep garnet in colour with warm rosy hues. The complex bouquet offers layers of dark berries and cherry, cinnamon, sweet leather, fresh herbs and soft tobacco. The palate is plush and round on entry. Ample red and black fruit, including rhubarb, bramble fruit and cranberry, is balanced with notes of fresh mushroom, white pepper and savoury spice. We love this vintage’s delicate and lacy tannin structure and its bright acidity gives delicious lift to the lingering finish.
The middle culinary note was a salad trilogy designed and created at bistrode CBD by Chef Jeremy Strode. It was the perfect interlude. Three cuts of the duck and three treatments created a symphony that underscored the 2010 Cloudy Bay Pinot Noir. We nodded in agreement, luscious confit duck leg was offset by lightly smoked moist duck breast and highlighted by the piquancy offal of gizzards. Brilliant! Bring more..
As if the day could have got any better. I’m surprised, yet grateful: it did. Seated with Golden Century owner Mr. Eric Wong on my left, our palates were entertained by three Chinese offerings (two classics and one newly created dish to celebrated the wine and our visit.) Mr Wong’s conversations also entertained as he charmed us with stories of the dishes and his restaurants.
Ducks tongues led the Golden Century experience. Ducks tongues with the bones still in place, for sucking and savouring. (I ate the most – despite the feast we’d already had and what was yet to come.)
Think duck and perhaps (or maybe even for sure) you’ll be thinking..
Yes, Peking Duck was next on the menu. Classic! Perfection! Golden Century!
And as the ultimate finale, our last dish on the round Lazy Susan was a new recipe created especially: Golden Coin Duck. Beautiful contrasts of duck liver with pork. And if I’m right, it might be an auspicious sign, as (like the gorgeous red vest cardigan that our host was wearing) the eating of a coin is believed to be lucky!
Our 2010 Pinot Noir is deep garnet in colour with warm rosy hues. The complex bouquet offers layers of dark berries and cherry, cinnamon, sweet leather, fresh herbs and soft tobacco. The palate is plush and round on entry. Ample red and black fruit, including rhubarb, bramble fruit and cranberry, is balanced with notes of fresh mushroom, white pepper and savoury spice. We love this vintage’s delicate and lacy tannin structure- and its bright acidity gives delicious lift to the lingering finish.
Participating restaurants on the Sydney trail include Bistrode CBD, Golden Century, Uccello and Toko. Melbourne will hero with Taxi Dining Room and Brisbane to offer an extensive and impressive line up with Ristorante Tartufo, Reserve Milton, Little Truffle, Marriott, Citron, and heading a little further north to Noosa’s exclusive Sails Restaurant.
Diners will be taken on a culinary journey with each restaurant serving a signature duck dish that has been carefully crafted to showcase the seductive characters of the 2010 Cloudy Bay Pinot Noir. If like me, you adore duck and pinot: the Cloudy Bay Pinot & Duck Trail will be available at participating restaurants for all of July 2012. Seems like there are more than one or two restaurants that will need a visit.
And for later cook up at home reminders from the fabulous meals, recipes from the three restaurants from the lunch are available on Inside Cuisine courtesy of Cloudy Bay wines:
For more information visit www.facebook.com/cloudybay
490 Crown Street Sydney NSW Australia
+61 2 9357 6100
52 King Street, Sydney NSW Australia
+61 2 9240 3000
Golden Century Seafood Restaurant
393-399 Sussex Street, Haymarket Australia
+61 2 9212 3901