This month saw Martin Bosley launch a series of wine dinners held in the boardroom at his restaurant in Oriental Parade, Wellington. Any meal I’ve had at Martin Bosley’s Restaurant has been spectacular, and for many of the things he does are, I’m not afraid to admit, rather over my head. The last time I dined at Martin’s I was privileged to sit next to food writer and critic David Burton, who is no mean chef himself, and he explained some of the marvellous ideas and techniques that Martin employed in his meal he served to us. (Click here to see my review of the Fromm 20 Year Anniversary Lunch.) Whether I understood fully the meaning and intent was a moot point, as I enjoyed the meal, the visuals, the aromas, flavours and textures. What was also spectacular was how Martin matched the food with the wine at the time, the interactions superb.
Martin Bosley has always had a great skill in wine and food matching, one of the few masters with this ability in Wellington city. I’m sure that is why when wine producers wish to have their wines served in a setting that shows them off to their best, Martin Bosley’s is one of the most desirable venues. At the ‘normal’ lunch and dinner service, the wine list has been chosen with great care to be sympathetic with the style of the food, no doubt certain matches already worked out to accompany certain dishes on the menu! That is another reason why Martin Bosley’s is one of the most highly regarded dining establishments in the country.
For this year, the first Wednesday of every month, a wine themed dinner will be offered. B.Y.O. evenings will alternate with Winemaker Dinners. Of particular interest are the B.Y.O. dinners which are themed on Martin creating a series of food courses designed to match certain grape varieties and wine styles. This puts the onus, a pleasurable one, no doubt of selecting and bringing a type of wine to fit into the evening. This turnaround in focus challenges the wine lover to play their part in the match.
The first B.Y.O. Wine Dinner was held on 4 April where diners were invited to bring Riesling and Aromatic wines. For a fixed price of $130.00 pp, including corkage, Martin Bosley’s served an amuse bouche followed by four courses of progressing weight and textures, finishing with dessert and coffee. The dinner was held in the Noel Manthel Boardroom of the Royal Port Nicholson Yacht Club, so places were limited. Martin reports it was a great success, and already has strong bookings for the next dinners.
- Bread with olive oil
- Amuse bouche – Gougere with duck liver parfait
- Chilled crayfish nantua, citrus salad
- Pork and hazelnut terrine, bay leaf – parsnip vichysoisse, parsley puree, pancetta – almond praline crumble
- Sashimi of fish, lemon peel puree, coconut pudding, freeze-dried mandarin, lemon oil, candied rosemary
- Grilled fish, corn veloute, corn parfait, spanner crab, cos lettuce
- Desserts – Apple sponge, apricot ice cream, freeze-dried gala apple, blue cheese mousse, candied walnut bread
It sounds like a lot of fun and very enjoyable to B.Y.O. with your own wine, either attending by yourself or with friends. In any circumstance, I’d imagine you’ll be trying all sorts of wines with fabulous food and like –minded, interesting people.
- 6 June – Bordeaux/Cabernet Merlot blends
- 1 August – Pinot Noir/Burgundy
- 3 October – Chardonnay
- 2 May – Fromm Winery
- 4 July – Old World vs New World with John Saker
- 5 September – Beer with Neil Miller
- 7 November – Seresin Estate