Executive Chef Volker Marecek and Food and Beverage Director Matt Carroll created an evening of competitive satisfaction with “A Battle from Vineyard to Plate”.
That evening saw two of the biggest names in New Zealand wine, Pegasus Bay and Man O’ War, go head-to-head in a blind taste battle where guests voted for one of two unidentified wines that accompanied each dish.
Guests were treated to 4 courses of delicately crafted dishes matched to wines chosen by the winemakers to highlight the unique characteristics of their wine, based on a set menu designed by Executive Chef Volker Marecek from The Langham, Auckland.
Marecek relished the challenge of vineyard to plate, saying: “It was all about finding a way to incorporate the winery processes into the menu, while still keeping it Kiwi.” Marecek marinated the beef tartare in lees from the wine barrel and smoked his ox cheek consommé using wood barrel chips.
Man O’ War Winemaker Duncan McTavish and Pegasus Bay Marketing Manager Edward Donaldson had the opportunity to entertain wine enthusiasts with stories of their vineyards while they dined.
With both vineyards taking first place in 2 courses each, Pegasus Bay took home the winning title by an individual count of votes that was as close as 108 – 92.
The evening, which took place in the Chandelier room at The Langham, Auckland is set to be the first of an annual event where Food and Beverage Director Matt Carroll hopes to involve international vineyards including a Kiwi v Australia battle that will draw from his home roots of Australia.