Monthly Archives: April 2016

A perfect French drop with your Autumn casserole


Domaine de l’Olivette 2013

This French organic wine is a perfect accompaniment for your autumn or winter casseroles. I can sure praise this wine as it went so well with the Coq Au Vine I cooked this past Saturday, one more recipe I will be sharing with you very soon. This nice drop is made with a blend of Merlot, Syrah and Grenache in a 16th-century Chateau, you almost feel quite grand when you drink it. The wine is smooth, well balanced  and exhibits black fruit notes like raspberry and blackberry with a hint of spice.

Where can you buy this wine?


152 Elizabeth St, Sydney NSW 2000

Ph: (02) 9264 3022


A Barossa Riesling that’s pretty left of centre


I love good wines and enjoy the challenge in pairing wines with the recipes I make. One area I need to do more work on this year is to blog the wines that are often a hit with my dishes.

On this occasion, I was encouraged by a local wine aficionado to try the 2015 Il Chicco, a Riesling from Shobbrook wines. He loves this wine so much that he was heading back to the Oakbarrel this week for a few more bottles and convinced me to do the same.

He was right the wine was quite a hit last night with the simple tomato sauce based pasta and king prawns. Like a true Riesling, it’s high in acidity and aromatic, but it’s quite left of centre for a Riesling as winemaker Tom Shobbrook blended a seven-year-old sherry, the result is stunning. Tom follows traditional European methods and the wine’s natural state sure comes through with its striking oxidative flavours. In addition to its aromas, you have the freshness from this young wine that makes it a perfect match for shellfish.

Where to find this wine?


152 Elizabeth St, Sydney NSW 2000

Ph: (02) 9264 3022



A typical Spanish dish, Arroz caldoso!

Arroz  caldoso is another great typical dish from Spain, and the star ingredient is Calasparra rice. The main characteristic of this recipe is that the rice is served in its rich broth, as opposed to allowing the liquid to evaporate. As soon as you are done be quick to serve it before the rice absorbs all the liquid.

Across Spain you will find many varieties of this dish, the most common ingredients used are chicken, pork ribs, duck, rabbit, prawns, clams, vegetables or a combination of these ingredients. I was fortunate to try this recipe in Seville, where they use wild duck as they have a vast population that breed in the southwest of Seville.

Recipe (serves 4)

  • 1/2 free range chicken, cut into 4 pieces
  • 300g pork ribs
  • 200g chicken livers
  • 150g toasted almonds
  • 1/2 brown onion, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 red capsicum, chopped
  • 1/2 red chilli, chopped
  • 4 cloves
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 200 ml white wine
  • 6 asparagus, chopped into 2cm pieces
  • Pulp of two small tomatoes
  • 1 tsp smoked sweet paprika
  • 150g calasparra rice
  • 1.5 ltr hot water
  • salt and pepper


Sear all the meats in a heavy based pan + olive oil + garlic cloves. Once all well browned, remove the meats and garlic from the pan + quickly sear livers. In a mortar and pestle, gently pound the liver and toasted almonds into a paste + 50ml wine + paprika + stir well.

Add the onions, capsicum and chilli to the pan, gently brown all the ingredients until it becomes a sticky sofrito + salt and pepper to taste + tomato pulp + stir well + allow the juices to evaporate + wine 150 ml wine to deglaze the pan.

Add chicken and pork ribs  back  to the pan + water + bring to a slow simmer + cloves and cinnamon + liver and almond  paste + stir well + rice + allow to simmer for 15 min, add the asparagus in the last 4 minutes. Make sure to serve it as soon as it is ready. This dish is well matched with a Carinyena wine from Catalunya, Spain.


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