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Emigrated from America to New Zealand and never looked back. Couldn't have asked for a better husband, family & life!


Like anyone else, I really enjoy a night out once in a while. I love good food and great company, but every now and then I see a particularly snooty menu and it irritates me. Today I received an invitation to a "winemakers lunch" along with the following menu that made me laugh...needless to say, it's a bit "over the top" for even me. At first, it all sounded very interesting...

The lunch includes:

  • A sumptuous five-course meal
  • 6 glasses of superb wines from the guest vineyard
  • Return transport from Central Wellington
  • Extreme Golf (10 balls per person)
  • Claybird shooting (10 shots per person)
  • Use of petanque and horseshoe throwing sets

Not too bad yet, right? They also provide transport so no one will drink & drive. So, I decide to have a look at the menu to see what is on offer...

Petit Brioche with Alaskan King Crab Fraiche
Abalone on Japanese Seaweed Salad
Served with Allan Scott Cecelia Reserve Brut
Whipped Goat Curd
on sweetcorn Parantha with mustard greens, melon and ginger salsa
Served with Allan Scott Millstone Organic Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2008
Spiced Pork Gyoza
with grilled scampi and an Asian herb salad with lime labne
Served with Allan Scott The Wallops Chardonnay 2007
Seared Ostrich Medallionon roast beetroot and shallot with
Vincotto olive pate, snail wontons and caramelised beer vinaigrette
Served with Allan Scott The Hounds Pinot Noir 2007
Roast Nectarine
With a pear, brandy and butterscotch sauce
with gorgonzola icecream and madelines
Served with Allan Scott Late Harvest Riesling 2007

Now, I will admit that some of these things sound interesting, but...whipped goat curd on parantha - can't they say goat cheese on indian flatbread? Or...how about the ostrich...the stuff is nearly flavourless on it's own, so why try to dress it up rather than serving duck or even quail (if you want to cook exotic fowl), at least they have flavour!!!

Now, the snail wontons - I mean, really? Yes, I have eaten snails as escargot and although I thought it was okay, it wasn't something I'd rush madly out to buy...would you? Again - flavourless except for the fat, herbs & garlic they are smothered in (usually).

Finally, we get to dessert, this has to be good, right??? Well, the fruit and sauce sound okay...I'll even take a madeline or two, but gorgonzola ice cream??? WHAT?! I detest blue vein cheeses at any given time, but to make an ice cream out of the vile stuff has to be a crime against all things right in the world or something, really!

So now I suppose that with three out of six courses featuring cheese of some variety or another, the seaweed, snails and fruit are supposed to be nature's laxatives to help push it all through, right?

Well, whatever the case, I think I'll give this one a miss. I would prefer the lunches on offer at , Willamette Valley Vineyards, where I know the menus will still be first class, but not overstated...much like their wines, I suppose. I know this because my Uncle is their winemaker as well as a first rate cook (as is my Aunt Maria).

Enough for this post...have a laugh and be thankful that most people, no matter what their class, status, or income, are not so snooty as this. LOL


5 Thoughts & Remarks:

Cheryl said...

I will say its one snooty menu, LOL. I have no idea what half that stuff is!

NuKiwi said...

I guess they word their menus that way on purpose to confuse people and to try and justify NZ $150 per person! LOL
(That's about US $75-80 right now I think...)

By the time you realize that you are basically getting corn flatbreads/tortillas with cheese, that gyoza are potstickers, and a madeline is just a puffed sugar cookie, it's too late to get your cash back! LOL

Joie de vivre said...

So you didn't try the gorgonzola ice cream? I love snooty sounding things, I think it just heightens the experience. Is that weird?

NuKiwi said...

Oddly enough, it's probably not weird...I guess I just think a little goes a long way when it comes to menus like this...and here in NZ people just aren't as pretentious/ostentatious as the "winemaker" providing this lunch...no one eats like that here! LOL

Have a great weekend!

Nikki The Foodie said...

Hahaha...some people have more $$$ than taste or sense I guess lol. Thanks for sharing!