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VOL. 48 August 2012

Great kitchen designs

In co

rpo

in g r at

What fires up Wildfire? page 27

Bar food

menu must-haves page 36

Swimming in the water of life

- The Panel soaks itself in brandy page 56


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EDITOR – hospitality Veronica Johnston Ph 021 756 582 editor@hospitalitymag.co.nz Assistant EDITOR – hospitality Jesma Magill Jesma.magill@xtra.co.nz EDITOR – Thirst Don Kavanagh Ph 021 262 3990 donk@mediaweb.co.nz ADVERTISING SALES MANAGER – hospitality Wendy Steele Ph 021 300 473 Email wendy.steele@mediaweb.co.nz ADVERTISING SALES MANAGER – thirst Trish Day Ph 0275 616 556 Email trishd@mediaweb.co.nz DESIGNER Amber Renée Hobbs amberh@mediaweb.co.nz Contributing Writers Linda Bennett (Christchurch) Email: lindabennett@clear.net.nz Sue Fea (Queenstown) Email dave@queenstownproperty.com Kathy Ombler (Wellington) Email: kathy@ombler.co.nz Industry contributors Marisa Bidois, Thomas Chin, Pip Duncan, Ken Harris, Bruce Robertson, Vic Williams. GROUP SALES managER Lisa Morris ADVERTISING CO-ORDINATOR Pip Maclean Ph 09 529 3000 Email ads@mediaweb.co.nz ACCOUNTANT Pam King Ph 09 300 2670 Email pamk@mediaweb.co.nz CREDIT CONTROL Gladys Hooker Ph 09 300 2672 Email gladys@mediaweb.co.nz CIRCULATION/SUBSCRIPTIONS Sue McDiarmid Rates: $80 for 12 issues plus Directory incl GST and post. Overseas rates available on request. Address to: Subscriptions Dept, Mediaweb, PO Box 5544, Wellesley St, Auckland 1141 Email subs@mediaweb.co.nz www2.mediaweb.co.nz/shopping Prepress & PRINT BY PMP Print ISSN 1172 4285 PUBLISHEd By

PUBLISHER Toni Myers Mediaweb 115 Newton Road, Eden Terrace, Auckland 1010 PO Box 5544, Wellesley St, Auckland 1141 Phone +64 9 529 3000 Fax +64 9 529 3001 Email enquiries@mediaweb.co.nz www.mediaweb.co.nz Original material published in this magazine is copyright, but may be reproduced providing permission is obtained from the editor and acknowledgment given to Hospitality magazine. Opinions expressed are those of the authors and may not necessarily be those of Mediaweb. We welcome material from commercial sources for publication but cannot guarantee that it will be used as submitted.

From the editor. More fun at the Fare The New Zealand Culinary Fare and the Restaurant and Bar Show kick off again this month with more competitions, giveaways and celebrity speakers. One stand-out attraction from these two events is Monica Galetti of Le Gavroche in London. Galetti has a strong Kiwi connection. She was born in Samoa and raised in Wellington before she went on to work in London for Michel Roux Jr. at Le Gavroche (the first London restaurant to be awarded three Michelin Stars). At the Restaurant and Bar Show, Galetti will talk about some of the signature dishes and techniques that have made Le Gavroche such a famous foodie destination. In a special show preview, we asked her about some of her own favourite dishes and which restaurants she plans on visiting while she’s here. You’ll find this interview on page 16. From good food to good kitchen design, this month we chat to Nils Danielsen, the managing director of Wildfire Commercial Kitchens and Bars starting on page 27. His story from starting out rather humbly (think one desk and one computer) to now running one of this country’s top kitchen design companies is an inspirational one. It’s also a timely reminder that with a little bit of initiative, and a whole lot of hard work, perseverance and determination, you really can achieve great things. Good luck to everyone competing at this month’s shows,

Veronica Johnston, Editor We have a free copy of Monica Galetti’s new cookbook Monica’s Kitchen to giveaway. Just email me at editor@hospitalitymag.co.nz to go in the draw to win.


Contents August 2012 Appetizers 6 The new Bachelor of Culinary Arts degree from Otago Polytechnic.

15 The NZ Culinary Fare gets set to impress. 16 Monica Galetti reveals her favourite restaurants, ingredients and signature dishes.

18 Northern Nibbles: Jean-Christophe Varnier, Libertine, Revelry Cocktail Lounge and The Commons.

19 Capital Comment: Rachel Tualelei, Peoples Coffee and Visa Wellington on a Plate.

20 Southern Snippets: Connor Sainsbury-Canham and Me and Mee Noodle and Spice Bar.

22

Mains

16

22 For the love of chocolate Discover how and why chefs are now matching ribbons of chocolate with venison, crab and ostrich.

27 Firing up the industry Wildfire Commercial Kitchen and Bar is one of the top three kitchen design businesses in New Zealand. But what drives this business and why is it one to watch?

32 It’s all about the South Food and beverages from the South Island were the stars of a special hospitality showcase in Wellington recently.

36 Bar food, bar none Shared foods, free-range and less of the deep-fried standards please – that’s the clear message being heard from bar foods patrons at two popular Wellington outlets.

Great kitchen designs

46 Marisa Bidois provides support and Cameron

INCO

RPOR

ATING

What fires up Wildfire? page 27e 0 WWW.HOSPITALITYMAG.CO.NZ

Douglas tastes the days away.

On the cover

VOL. 48 AUGUST 2012

45 Ken Harris on why skills are the new world currency.

HOSPITALITY | THIRST

Food for Thought

Bar food

menu must-haves page 36

Swimming in the water of life

- The Panel soaks itself in brandy page 56

47 Size matters to Vic Williams and Bruce Robertson talks penalties. VOLUME 48 • AUGUST 2012

48 Books to Savour

Main production kitchen – Eden Park South Stand – designed and installed by Wildfire Commercial Kitchens and Bars.


50

50 Coolest bar in town Sue Fea reports back from the snowy mountains of the south where pop-up bars have sprung up on the skifields, bringing the apres-ski experience right up to the mountain.

53

Not to be trifled with Kathy Ombler heads off to sunny Spain and comes back with a wonderful tale of how one company is using ageold techniques to make fine sherry.

54 Spirit of change The first of our Panel tastings this month looks at some excellent newcomers to the world of gin.

56 Swimming in the waters of life The Panel takes a broad view of brandy, from the classical notes of Cognac and Armagnac to the fun and funky world of schnapps and grappa.

60

Bubbly personalities Our overworked Panel checks out some out-of-theordinary bubblies that you should consider for your summer wine lists.

62

Peter's Picks Our wine correspondent Peter Saunders presents his final selection of the best wines he has tried this month.


Appetizers. The Thirsty Bear pub in London uses table-side tablets and self-serve beer to help customers help themselves. The pub has iPads at 15 tables, 12 of them linked to self-serve taps. Not only can customers now pour their own pints and order food using the tablets (doing so simply requires setting up an electronic tab at the bar) but they can also send text messages requesting waiter service, order songs from a connected Jukebox, and even update their Facebook profiles. Since installing the new technology, revenue at the pub has apparently increased by 78 per cent. See www.thethirstybear.com for more.

tly hosted some of rden Pavilion recen Auckland’s Winterga -fashioned debate food stars for an old the city’s favourite tentious tossers.” pre are not “foodies to decide whether or Tabron and Simon Nici Wickes, Judith The ‘against’ team of foodie likes a ery te, arguing that “ev ba de the n wo n lso Wi d.” Meanwhile, y all enjoy “simple foo freebie” and that the ng, Alison Leonard ed of Sean Armstro the ‘for’ team consist . and Annabelle White

The team at Mediaweb would like to congratulate our three lucky prize draw winners from Fine Food NZ: Marcus Braun from the CPIT School of Food and Hospitality won a Moffat Turbofan Oven valued at over $2100, Damien Guivarra from Silver Chef won a night and breakfast for two at the Hilton Auckland and Gavin Kempthorne from Shore Mariner won a $200 bar tab from Snapdragon. A big thank you to our sponsors: Moffat, Hilton Auckland and Snapdragon.

Le Cordon Bleu New Zealand has just appointed Adam Newell and Sébastien Lambert as head culinar y tutors for the new school, set to open in Wellington this month. Newell, owner of Zibibbo restaurant, is joining Le Cordon Bleu full-time to teach the Diplôme de Cuisine. Lambert, a Frenchtrained Patisserie chef, will teach the Diplôme de Pâtisserie course.

4 . Hospitality/Thirst . August 2012

Italy’s Train of Taste offers gastronomic excursions featuring delicacies of the regions it passes through. As it travels, tourists on its two cars can not only enjoy the scener y, but they can also taste typical products and dishes of the regions they see, accompanied by local wines. Professional guides are on hand to curate the sensory experience, and both electric cars included in the specially refurbished train are equipped with audio and video broadcasting systems, as well as external cameras that give passengers a large-screen view of the landscape passing by. With a capacity of 83 passengers, the Train of Taste prices its excursions at around NZ $80.

In Auckland presenting the 201 2 Hospitality Report, researched and compiled by RANZ and AUT University, were Professor Nigel Hemmin gton, Dean for the Faculty of Culture and Society, AUT; and the president of RANZ, Bar t Littlejohn.


NESTLÉ TOQUE D’OR 2012 Nestlé Professional is proud to support New Zealand’s hospitality stars of the future as they compete against the best of the best for the coveted supreme title at the 2012 Nestlé Toque d’Or. Monday 20th August at ASB Showgrounds, Hall 2, Greenlane, Auckland at 12.00pm.


Appetizers.

A very creative culinary degree The new Bachelor of Culinary Arts degree from Otago Polytechnic is a worldfirst that’s proving popular here and overseas for its creative design focus. By Sue Fea

A former London chef, now living in Dunedin, has launched a world-first in the teaching of culinary arts that is gaining notoriety internationally. Otago Polytechnic hospitality programme manager Tony Heptinstall and his colleagues successfully launched the unique Bachelor of Culinary Arts degree at the start of this year. It’s a project-based degree that encourages creativity and adventurous food design and is already proving popular with young tertiary students and existing chefs. “It’s the way we’re doing it that makes it unique in the world,” says Heptinstall, who has worked in Michelin star restaurants overseas. “It’s more of a design course. We give them what is similar to a fashion design brief and then ask them to produce. It leaves the creativity over to the chefs.” The course is now turning heads in culinary 6 . Hospitality/Thirst . August 2012

institutions around the globe and its Otago Polytechnic founders are earning a reputation in the industry for their innovative thinking. “Food is becoming more and more creative. People write blogs, their own websites. They want to get on TV cooking shows and write their own cookbooks,” says Heptinstall. There is no other degree in the world like it at present and its 50 students this year include some straight from high school and part-time chefs. Chefs with 10 years relevant industry experience can complete the degree in 18 months instead of the standard three years and many are using it as a gateway to teaching. The course not only inspires originality and individuality in food design, but covers small business, management and food and beverage service.

Assessments are based around using a task to match a brief. First-year students may have to design the likes of finger food around a Mediterranean country theme, first completing research into the food, culture and people. Another task may involve choosing a nursery rhyme or children’s fairytale and designing a pastry around that. “We’re teaching them to be really creative. There’s a really desperate need for this,” Heptinstall says. It’s a departure from the traditional master/ apprentice model of teaching cookery, in which chefs go straight to a recipe. First-year student Amanda Ede (26), who has six years experience as a chef, says the course is “like going to play every single day”. “It’s so cool. It’s all about creativity and the design process behind the food.” Ede wants to teach and hopes to use her new


Appetizers.

Taking the degree

to the world

Student Stephanie Pierce’s Cinderella-inspired dessert. Hot caramel sauce is poured onto a golden chocolate bowl that represents the carriage to reveal pumpkin ice cream. The carriage starts as a pumpkin in the story. The dirt under the ball is made from chocolate sweet pastry.

skills to inspire youngsters to get passionate about food. Polytechnic senior cookery lecturer Adrian Woodhouse says students are given the necessary tools and are then given room to research and allow their own initiatives to take over. “It’s not the typical paint by numbers approach,” says Woodhouse. Associate professor Richard Mitchell says the degree was established for several compelling reasons. “Secondary schools are now changing in the way they teach their food programmes, focusing more on design elements. We want to ensure we incorporated that into our teaching too.” “Increasingly, culinary students want to be given the chance to be engaged in a more creative way with food, while our industry is demanding employees who are adaptable critical thinkers.”

Otago Polytechnic took its much talked about, design-based world-first culinary arts degree to the world this winter. School of Hospitality associate professor Richard Mitchell, hospitality programme manager Tony Heptinstall and senior cookery lecturer Adrian Woodhouse have just spent three weeks on a gastronomic tour of Europe promoting and informing the industry overseas about the new degree. They addressed delegates at the International Conference on Food Design and Designing Food in London about the rationale behind the only design-led culinary arts degree in the world and how it encourages “adventurous food design”. The trio also rubbed shoulders with one of the world’s top chefs, Ferran Adria, and River Cottage’s Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall at the prestigious food symposium, MAD 2012, held in Copenhagen, Denmark last month. The event attracted more than 20 of the world’s leading culinary experts who

gathered to share their musings on the theme, ‘Appetite’. The group also travelled to Champagne in France to progress some joint research being carried out between the Polytechnic and Reims Management School. The research is examining Central Otago’s wine industry and its rapid, 30-year rise to international success and recognition. Their final stop was Barcelona in Spain where the highlight was the chance to dine at 41 Degrees Experience, the acclaimed restaurant of chef Albert Adria, Ferran Adria’s brother. Associate Professor Richard Mitchell says the tour gave them the opportunity to gain inspiration from some of the world’s best, which could then be passed on to their students. “A lot of what we teach our students is modelled on the philosophies of these very talented and innovative people, who are leaders of our industry.”

rub shoulders with top chef The Otago Poly technic crew food symposium in Denmark. Ferran Adria at the recent MAD

August 2012 . Hospitality/Thirst . 7


Appetizers.

Our olive oils stick out Kiwi chefs prefer the locally home-grown, healthier extra virgin olive oils from New Zealand.

Image credit | Thinkstock

By Kathy Ombler

Current debate over the qualities of imported extra virgin olive oils (or not, as has been suggested) is not fazing Kiwi chefs, happy with both the class and cost of our own, home-grown oils. In May, television consumer rights programme, Fair Go, reported on tests carried out on 14 oils labelled Extra Virgin Olive Oil, on sale in supermarkets, to see if they met the International Olive Council standard for extra virgin status. All seven of the European oils tested failed, and all were reported to have traces of rancidity. Gayle Sheridan, Olives New Zealand executive officer, says recent international studies back up these findings. “One of the main reasons New Zealanders buy extra virgin olive oil is because of its health benefits. If the oil is not extra virgin then it does not have these associated benefits.” Sheridan is dismissive of New Zealand Food and Grocery Council claims that the New Zealand Sensory Panel and Australian Modern Olives Laboratory, the organisations involved in the Fair Go testing, were not properly qualified. She says both are accredited by the International Olive Council and listed on their website. Seasoned Wellington chef David Thurlow says he has had suspicions about imported oils for a while and is thankful he can now buy bulk New Zealand oil at a reasonable price. He says production volumes have increased as our trees have grown and it’s feasible to negotiate good prices with top producers. And the olive oil is great. “We get amazing profiles and value for money in New Zealand oils. It is a completely different beast (from European varieties), we get much more flavour. It really packs a punch.” Such a punch, that he often adds a little soy oil to vinaigrette for example, to temper the strong flavours. He also opts for soy oil for hot pans and searing meats. “There’s no point in using quality extra virgin olive oil if you’re going to heat it.” Deer Industry Board executive chef Graham Brown agrees, and says there is no need to depend on imported oils or local extra virgin olive oils for large scale use. “A lot of values in the fine oils get lost in the cooking so you just use them for finishing a dish. Costs are very important these days and you can use cheaper oils for cooking; grape seed oil, bran oil or plain vegetable oil, depending on the dish.” With regards to the imported oils debate, Brown says judging the true qualities of olive oil is a science, best left to the experts. “I know what I like. There’s also a bit of pride at stake. In Canterbury we’ll use oils from Akaroa or Amberly. “Most Kiwi chefs will support oils produced in their local region, we’re all a bit parochial.”

He obviously has a point, given Thurlow favours oils from Wellington neighbour region Martinborough. Meanwhile, Sheridan advises those seeking the real New Zealand extra virgin olive oils to look for the red OliveMark. “Consumers can be assured that the product is in fact 100 per cent extra virgin olive oil and is packaged and labelled appropriately.”

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Appetizers.

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Menu showcases

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It was purported to be the most prestigious event on our athletes’ calendar. The NZ Olympic Committee’s Governor General’s Dinner at Whitehall’s Banqueting House last month featured more than 330 VIP guests, celebrating New Zealand’s best. And nothing was more fitting for our top athletes than cuisine carefully designed by award-winning chef Peter Gordon. Held the night before the world’s biggest sporting event got underway, the banquet featured a three-course menu that reflected our country’s reputation for sustainably produced food. As a strong promoter of the New Zealand food industry, Gordon contacted a number of New Zealand food producers for their help in putting together the celebratory menu. The evening’s starter was a delicate seafood preparation of miso marinated Ōra King Salmon, manuka cold-smoked salmon and Kaipara oysters with wasabi sake dressing. The main was a roast New Zealand lamb rack and venison with mustard mashed potatoes, broad beans, peas and artichokes, minted gremolata and chrain. The meal was finished with a classic Kiwi favourite of baby pavlova with Little Melton mango yoghurt cream, passion fruit chocolate mousse, Heilala vanilla strawberries and kiwifruit. Premium Ōra King Salmon is soon to be launched by South Islandbased producer New Zealand King Salmon. It was also chosen for the menu at Kiwi House, the home of our Olympians during the games. An official partner of Kiwi house, NZ King Salmon was approached by Peter Gordon to provide one of the items on the ‘classic Kiwi barbecue’ menu. More than 71kgs of fresh King Salmon and 20 sides of Manuka cold smoked salmon were flown into Heathrow in preparation for the events.


Al Brown

Ben Bayly

Matt Moran

Monica Galetti

Warren Turnbull

It’s Auckland Restaurant Month Auckland’s BIG little city culinary festival returns and dishes up some world-class talent.

August is Auckland Restaurant Month where city visitors can access a public launch party, world-class chefs and more than 100 restaurants showcasing special menus and offers. A series of celebrity chef events will take place every week. A visiting chef will take residence for the evening at a local restaurant to recreate the signature dishes that made them famous. This includes: Matt Moran with Simon Gault at Euro, Wednesday, August 8 – A Taste of Aria (Australia) Josh Emett with Warren Turnbull at District Dining, Wednesday, August 15 – A Taste of Rata (Queenstown) Monica Galetti with Ben Bayly at The Grove, Wednesday, August 22 – A Taste of Le Gavroche (UK)

 l Brown, Peter Gordon and Sean A Connelly at Dine by Peter Gordon, Wednesday, August 29 – A Taste of Federal St (Auckland). During the month, all participating restaurants will prepare special menus across three price points (< $20, $21-$30 and $30+), providing great value to diners and an incentive to keep coming back for more. Diners can also look forward to some great incentives for tak ing part in Auckland Restaurant Month. Up for grabs is a year of dining worth $10,000 in the Big little City and American Express Card members can receive an automatic $40 credit, when dining at participating restaurants. Auckland Restaurant Month runs from August 1-31. See biglittlecity.co.nz for more details.


Appetizers.

Simon Gault eyes up Queenstown

Gault will open his first South Island restaurant in the popular tourist hotspot in November. MasterChef New Zealand judge Simon Gault is the second Kiwi celebrity chef to make a foray into the Queenstown restaurant market this year. Gault plans to open his new steakhouse and oyster bar, Jervois Steakhouse Queenstown, in Brecon Street, opposite the Lone Star, in late November. In May fellow MasterChef judge Josh Emett launched his first restaurant, Rata, in downtown Queenstown. Gault owns three restaurants in Auckland, including Jervois Steakhouse, two in Wellington and one in Taupo, but this will be his first South Island restaurant. “We’ve been looking at Queenstown as an option for a long time. It was just a matter of finding the right site and the timing,” says Gault. He’s always liked the destination, it was just a matter of the right concept. It’s purely coincidence that he and Emett are opening in Queenstown within six months of

each other, but there’ll be no friendly cook-offs for customers. “They’re two quite different restaurants. Josh is a fantastic chef. He’s done a great job down there.” Jervois Queenstown will not be fine dining: “We’re about great steaks, seafood and options for vegetarians. Primarily it’s about sourcing the best steak New Zealand and the world has to offer.” He’ll be aiming to lure in the locals with enticements like half a crayfish for $19. There’ll be a street-side oyster bar, linking to a main 100-seater dining area and the interior fit-out will feature bricks from Christchurch. Jervois Queenstown will initially be headed up by Gault’s long-time Jervois Steakhouse Auckland senior chef Darren Lim. Gault will take over after he finishes a round of MasterChef filming at Easter next year. Gault is very grateful for the huge welcome resort restaurant owners have already given him. “They’ve been so helpful... really great. They’ve welcomed me with open arms and told me who to buy what off.”

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Appetizers.

A supreme pie

It’s a sweet victory again as a King Country duo make it two in a row in the 2O12 Bakels Supreme Pie Awards. While teriyaki chicken sushi and curried goat with feta pies had the 18 judges salivating, it was a delectable and delicate gingered peach and pear with Cointreau pie which really tantalised the judges’ taste buds and took top honours in the 2012 Bakels New Zealand Supreme Pie Awards. It was the second year in a row and the third time in the award’s 16 year history that a gourmet fruit pie has won the Supreme Pie awards. And it was produced by last year’s Supreme winning duo, Shane and Kathy Kearns of Viands Bakery, of Kihikihi, near Te Awamutu. The pair won $7,500 cash and the coveted Supreme Pie maker Trophy. However, it was a close-run contest, with all the judges, including TV chef and celebrity judge Al Brown commenting on the “magnificent” standard of this year’s pies. Judge and Bakels executive chairman, Duncan Loney, said although the final result was close, he was not surprised by the Kearns’

double victory. “It’s a case of ‘may the best pie win’.” More pies were entered than ever before, with 4,500 pies entered from 444 bakeries. Judges were unanimous in their praise for the higher than ever standard of pies and for the innovative fillings devised by pie makers. Exotic fillings included Balinese coconut chicken; Asian beef with shitake and star anise; chicken; cranberry and camembert; sweet Moroccan lamb; crab, prawn, scallops and vegetables in white sauce; caramelised pork belly with coriander; and curried mutton with coriander. Last year the Kearns knocked the classic meat pie off its perch with their winning spiced plum, port and apple pie, so will New Zealand’s traditional meat pie makers be deterred by another win by a dessert pie? Loney does not think so: “I think for any good pie maker, this will only spur them

into action. I don’t think because a dessert pie looks attractive that gives them an unfair advantage. The judges consider a myriad of factors, from pastry to presentation to flavour.” The Kearns also showed their versatility by winning a Silver award in the seafood category, with their scallop, shrimp and prawn with sweet chilli and coriander pie. Kiwis chomp their way through 75 million pies a year in a market worth more than $140 million a year.

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For further information about the opportunities with Bevintel please contact: Peter Nelson, Managing Director, Bevintel Australasia Phone +64 21 466567 ■ Email peter.nelson@bevintel.co.nz August 2012 . Hospitality/Thirst . 13


Appetizers.

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If you own an up-and-coming restaurant in New Zealand and you’d like to be spectacularly rewarded for doing what you do naturally – to the value of $20,000 – the Up and Coming Business Team of the Year 2012 award, run by the Restaurant Association of New Zealand and part-sponsored by Mediaweb, could be your big break. You must be a full financial member of RANZ as at August 19, 2012 and have been in business for no longer than two years. Teams of two – one person from the kitchen and one front-of-house – must represent your business in the competition. The New Zealand Culinary Fare committee seeks teams of two who wish to show their skills in teamwork when cooking and serving a main course and a cold dessert for six people; that’s four guests and two judges. Business acumen plus a creative food and wine match will also be scrutinised and all this in a setting that conveys the ambience and mood of your restaurant. Simply submit a written summary outlining your business and your three-year plan, market niche, service culture, cuisine style, three photographs and your creative food and wine match. There’s no entry free. The prize comprises a business and mentoring package including ongoing, year-round advice and direction from some of the best hospitality operators in the industry plus some award-winning wines to help savour the sweet taste of success. There’s mentoring from industry leader Steve Logan and financial expert Grant Thornton, PR support from JML Communications, usage of NetPay for one year, a Calcmenu software package, a two-camera security video system from Secure Technical Service in association with Bosch CCTV, a website from Eveve, a story on your business in Hospitality magazine, Thymes and Foodnews, an annual RANZ membership and six bottles of Te Mata Elston Chardonnay to be won. To enter, email martin@restaurantnz.co.nz, call 09 632 1408, or visit www.restaurantnz.co.nz.


Appetizers.

The Fare’s wow factor Judges expect some very high standards at the New Zealand Culinary Fare.

As hundreds of kitchen and front-of-house competitors line up to test their skills at the New Zealand Culinary Fare this month, their performance will be judged by a group who have been there and done that – the judges. With skills honed over many years, the team of judges brings a wealth of practical and competition experience to the panel. And with a starring line up of chefs such as Steve Logan, one half of celebrated fine dining establishment Logan Brown Restaurant and Bar in Wellington, standards are set to be extremely high for competitors looking to impress the judges this year. Judge Jinu Abraham, executive chef at the Heritage in Auckland, says he will be impressed by competitors who let their ingredients take a starring role. “My ideal competitor will create simple, unfussy food which is deceptively difficult to achieve and yet showcases raw talent more than sophisticated dishes which have technical expertise, but no heart,” says Abraham. The executive chef, who brought his expertise in creating vegetarian and vegan

dishes to celebrated restaurant Hectors, goes on to say that his previous award wins – including a silver medal in Chef of the Year 2009 – were crucial to raising his profile in a tough and competitive industry. “It’s important to host these well-established

and respected culinary competitions to encourage talent and skills, so New Zealand can continue to position itself as a culinary destination of choice.” The New Zealand Culinary Fare takes place from August 19-21 at the ASB Showgrounds in Auckland and is free to attend. Visit www.restaurantnz.co.nz for more details.

Welcome back CPIT Making a welcome return to the annual Nestlé Toque d’Or competition will be Christchurch Polytechnic Institute of Technology (CPIT) students who were unable to compete at last year’s event due to the earthquake. They will join competitors from 10 other culinary schools to compete for top honours at the prestigious event. Teams of three students – two culinary and one restaurant service – are required to prepare six covers of a three-course meal within a set timeframe and deliver the dishes to attending guests. The Nestlé Toque d’Or competition will be held on Monday August 20 at the Fare.

August 2012 . Hospitality/Thirst . 15


Appetizers.

Deconstructing Monica London-based Monica Galetti, a guest star at this monthâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Restaurant and Bar Show, revealed her favourite restaurants, ingredients and signature dishes to Hospitality recently. Monica Galetti was born in Samoa, raised in Lower Hutt and worked in several restaurants in Wellington before heading to London. She is now senior sous chef for Michel Roux Junior at his two-Michelin-starred restaurant Le Gavroche, where she has worked for the past 10 years. She lives in London with her husband David and young daughter, Anais. Work is a family affair for the Galettis; David is the head sommelier at Le Gavroche. 16 . Hospitality/Thirst . August 2012

Whatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s new in the restaurant scene in the UK? The UK food scene is constantly changing and moving with the demands and tastes of the customers. There is a huge trend at the moment for sophisticated food in more relaxed dining atmospheres and carbon miles will always play a huge role in the top UK restaurants. It is very much a scene of encouraging and endorsing the local farmers and growers, and creating menus around the seasons.


Appetizers.

What are your signature dishes? One of my signature dishes is one I have on the menu at the moment. It’s a deconstructed peach cheesecake with peach schnapps jelly and fresh almonds. Personally, I love the changing seasons and when new produce becomes available, such as St George’s mushrooms; and the beginning of the asparagus season. I love using the freshest ingredients when available. When were you last in New Zealand? We visited family for Christmas in 2009. It was a very brief visit so we did not even dine out at that time. I have heard in the last two to three years that the Auckland restaurant scene has really taken off, heading towards the Australian-type scene of success. What restaurants are you keen to visit while you’re here? I’m very keen to get back to Logan Brown in Wellington; a visit is long overdue. I’ve read and heard some great things about The Grove in Auckland so definitely need a night at Ben’s place, for sure. To be honest, I am not in touch with the New Zealand food scene and would love to discover more about it on this particular trip. (As part of Auckland Restaurant Month, Monica will offer a taste of Le Gavroche at The Grove with Ben Bayly, August 22 from 6.30-10pm). W hat prompted you to return for the Restaurant and Bar Show? It was curiosity, as well as the opportunity to say hello to family and friends and I’m coming with my five-year-old daughter, Anais. My husband had to pull out and stay behind in London. It’s a very hectic time here at Le Gavroche, and especially more so with the Olympics. You’re currently a judge on MasterChef: The Professionals. What else are you doing? I’m thoroughly enjoying my role as a MasterChef: The Professionals judge. We get to discover the future talents of the UK and some of them are well and truly on their way. I am also in another food show called The Great British Food Revival later in the year. I am championing the English asparagus too. What advice do you have for those wanting to be a chef? Be prepared to work long hours and to take the pressure you need broad shoulders and a great sense of humour. Being a chef is not a shortcut to fame. You need to work hard and be dedicated to your art from the moment you walk in the door. Everything else comes second. It is a selfish industry to be in, but the love of creating and the passion to learn and discover new techniques as well as to master the classics is a constant adrenaline rush. Go forth and conquer, the world is your oyster.

Ben Stuart

Frankie Walker

More superstars at the show Several hospitality superstars have just signed up to join the Restaurant and Bar Show.

With just days to go, some of the hospitality industry’s superstars have agreed to join the line-up for the Restaurant and Bar Show starting on August 19. In addition to the stellar line-up announced in May, organisers Brand Events and Festivals have successfully attracted leading pastry chef and chocolatier Oliver Drayton and a range of liquor industry and food experts. Drayton is probably New Zealand’s top pastry chef and is sharing his secrets for making perfect desserts in a master class at the show. He has worked at a number of Michelinstarred restaurants and hotels in London and most recently was head pastry chef at Braçu restaurant. With a passion for chocolate, he was placed second in the UK nationals of the World Chocolate Masters competition in 2008 and won the Chocolatiers Choice award. Also added to the programme are free seminars featuring hospitality industry superstars such as Luke Dallow (Chapel and Red Hummingbird), Ben Stuart and Calum Chadwick (Beam), Danny Schuster and Dave Batten (wine experts), Tomas Vikario (Monin) and Frankie Walker (Lion). Meat genius Dave Porter from Harmony Foods joins the line-up demonstrating modern ‘head-to-tail’ techniques − how to use an entire pig − in a butchery master

class. Porter then demonstrates the best way to cook each cut. A further innovation is a mini-farmers market showcasing some of the most interesting and lesser-known products available to chefs. The event is a huge net working opportunity for experienced professionals and emerging stars from the hospitality industry. The event features the New Zealand Latte Art Championship, the hotly contested Bar Masters sponsored by Monin, and the Stella Artois Draught Masters competition. As well as seeking professional support at the Restaurant Association’s Business Hub and socialising in the Illy Cafe Showcase, there are a host of inspirational attractions on offer for guests. Monica Galetti of Le Gavroche restaurant in London (two Michelin stars), who is also a judge on MasterChef: The Professionals, shares her skills in the Telecom Master Classes while local chef Michael Meredith lets local chefs in on how to ‘Keep it real’ in the kitchen. The Wine Showcase features a selection of well-known wine companies such as Lion and Mac Vine International alongside smaller, boutique wineries. The Restaurant and Bar Show takes place August 19 and 20 at the ASB Showgrounds in Auckland.

August 2012 . Hospitality/Thirst . 17


Appetizers.

A French chef with more than 25 years experience has just signed up to run SkyCity’s Orbit restaurant, 190 metres above the city. Jean-Christophe Varnier established St Tropez Restaurant in Parnell 13 years ago and prior to that, worked in restaurants in London, at a three-star Michelin restaurant in Paris, and on a sixstar cruise liner. Varnier’s new Orbit menu will be released this month, with an emphasis on using top-quality produce to ensure guests experience an unforgettable taste of New Zealand. The new dessert menu has just been released.

Luke Dallow is involved in another hospitality venture along Ponsonby Road. He’s been consulting on the new eatery, Tin Soldier, with co-owners Mike Marshall and Amanda Williams, where small plates and casual homely dining are what it’s all about.

Joe’s Garage has recently unfurled another set of doors in New Plymouth. With a reputation for serving great coffee and fast food in cool, relaxing spaces, the latest addition is located in the historic State Hotel building in the central city and includes conference facilities. It lines up alongside other outlets in Queenstown (the first), Riccarton, Sumner, Wellington and Palmerston North. The business concept is currently being developed as a franchise group.

Northern Nibbles Libertine is the latest bar and eatery to be opened in Auckland by Pack and Company. It’s located above the Victoria Park Market in Freeman’s Bay, in a 100-year-old building that was part of the former onsite power station. One description of a Libertine is a person lacking moral restraints, but Pack and Company prefers to describe its latest addition to the local scene as offering “sinfully good, free-thinking food and drink” in inspired surroundings. Style influences derive from the Americas with a Kiwi twist. Central and South American cuisine features as individual serves or shared plates. The bar offers American whiskeys and bourbons, rums and rhum agricoles and a comprehensive beer list includes Libertine’s own pale ale called Albemarle, with wines from New Zealand plus North and South America too.

18 . Hospitality/Thirst . August 2012

There’ll be even more Revelry along Ponsonby Rd now. Revelry Cocktail Lounge, Wine Bar and Eatery has just opened on the former site of the Grange Bar. And expect a warm welcome with a touch of the exotic too, at 106 Ponsonby Rd. The ambience has been described as Oriental meets Grandma’s closet, where classic platters with a contemporary twist are feeding the crowds from around 3pm to 3am, most days. It’s closed on Mondays.


Appetizers.

This month’s Visa Wellington on a Plate is not just about city slicker dining, the regions and their artisan growers and suppliers are also fully engaged. Some highlights: Kapiti Vintage and Foodie, Family Steam Excursion, Rock and Rule in Ruth’s Kitchen (Ruth Pretty hosting the stars of Australian hit show My Kitchen Rules), Brew Balanced Banquet at Trentham, Invitational Hummus Cooking in Greytown’s Bar Saluté, Lunar Degustation (featuring local organic and biodynamic produce in Café Medici, Martinborough), and the cultural fusion of Currying Favour (Lot Eight olive oil producer Nalini Baruch ‘demystifies’ the world of Rogan Josh).

Finally something has been done with the historic, century-old former public toilets in Courtenay Place – and it’s about as big a transformation as one could imagine. With the help of Athfield Architects, the old brick building has been transformed into stylish new food-to-go ventures Tommy Millions (pizzas) and Gentlemen’s Beans (coffee and gelato). They are the joint project of Wellington foodies Lorenzo and Leonardo Bresolin plus Simon Niblett (co-partners in Wellington restaurants Scopa, Duke Carvell’s and Crazy Horse), along with pizza aficionado, Tommy Kirton. Tommy Millions is essentially Kirton’s project. His NYPD pizzas have long been favourites at the Sunday Harbourside Markets and he has been making pizza at Scopa for several years. He promises 18-inch “big boy” New York-style pizzas, cooked on stone. Gentlemen’s Beans is roasting its own custom blend and serving Gelissimo Gelato and Sorbetto.

Wellington is known for its edgy approach to coffee roasting, in particular pushing the Fair Trade and organic message. Now Peoples Coffee is telling everyone how to do it, with the launch of a barista handbook. Peoples Coffee Barista Handbook is a practical guide for both commercial coffee makers and home enthusiasts. It also tells the story of the pioneering Peoples Coffee company.

Capital Comment

Congratulations to seafood supplier and hospitality industry advocate Rachel Tualelei, recipient of a 2012 Sir Peter Blake Leadership Award. In 2006 Rachel founded Yellow Brick Road, which has succeeded in sourcing a sustainable supply of responsibly-caught premium seafood for New Zealand restaurants. In 2009 she co-founded with Martin Bosley the not-for-profit incorporated society which runs Wellington’s Sunday artisan City Markets, and provides business mentoring for new artisan producers. Tualelei is also on the board of Grow Wellington, the Industry Advisory Board of Le Cordon Bleu New Zealand and chairs the Advisory Board of the Visa Wellington on a Plate festival. Of Ngati Raukawa descent, Tualelei also supports the development of Maori commercial activities and is an associate director of the Wakatu Incorporation. And in true entrepreneurial Taulelei style, Yellow Brick Road’s contribution to this year’s Visa Wellington on a Plate will be a pop-up oyster truck. Top city chefs shucking and cooking all the ways you can think of cooking an oyster (or not), matched with local Wairarapa wines, Hardie Boys ginger beer and Six Barrel Sodas – no bookings required for this Cuba Street-based ‘Oyster Saloon’.

And continuing the creation so prolific in the city’s annual foodie festival is Eat your Words, a poetry competition to celebrate the love of words, food and coffee, sponsored by 50 cafés and to be judged by local poet and songwriter Hinemoana Baker.

Rachel Tualelei

What do Ella Fitzgerald, Charlie Parker and Cuba Street have in common? Not a lot until recently when the cute Lullaby of Birdland recycle boutique and café opened in the city’s upper Cuba Street. The café serves Flight Coffee, Foxton Fizz and counter food. And if you’re wondering, Lullaby of Birdland is also a song, written about Charlie ‘Bird’ Parker’s jazz club and sung by Fitzgerald – and many others – over the years.

August 2012 . Hospitality/Thirst . 19


Appetizers.

A Queenstown barman, inspired by the two people he would most like to drink with, came third in Appleton Estate Rum’s sixth National Cocktail Invitational in Auckland last month. Connor Sainsbury-Canham (pictured), of The Spire’s No 5 Church Lane, created the ‘Table for Three’ cocktail, which he mixed to a Notorious B.I.G. remix of Frank Sinatra’s ‘New York, New York’. Sainsbury-Canham says his inspiration stemmed from being asked which two people he would most want to have a drink with. He competed against five others from Auckland and Wellington. The winner was Jason Clarke, of Betty’s and Hummingbird in Wellington, and the runner-up was James Goggin, of Auckland’s Suite Bar. Clarke will now head to Jamaica to represent New Zealand at the Jamaica Rum Bartender Challenge in November. He will compete against cocktail makers from 10 countries including the US, UK, Canada, Mexico and Australia.

Queenstown Top 10 Holiday Park Creeksyde owners Erna and Tonnie Spijkerbosch have continued to garner recognition for their worldclass green initiatives in three separate green award events. The holiday park has been a finalist in New Zealand’s Green Ribbon Awards, achieved their ninth Benchmark status for international certification programme EarthCheck, and entered the SKAL Sustainable Development in Tourism award. Erna Spijkerbosch and nominator Marion Metz recently attended the Green Ribbon Awards ceremony in Wellington as finalists in the Waste Minimisation category. The Spijkerboschs were delighted at being recognised for their “outstanding work educating guests, staff and their local community about how to reduce waste”.

Marion Metz and Erna Spijkerbosch

Southern Snippets New Brighton, Christchurch is fast becoming a coffee hotspot with the opening of Jungle Law on Shaw Ave, complementing its nearby sister café Jungle Patrol on the corner of Oram Ave and Rodney Street. Both serve up coffee made with Lyttelton Coffee Company Beans. Meanwhile, Switch Espresso in the New Brighton Mall remains a popular spot for a caffeine hit.

Eastern Christchurch’s pizza favourite Pepperoni – formerly in Stanmore Road – has reopened in Madras Street, opposite CPIT, and The George has reopened after cosmetic repairs. ReStart Container Mall in the central city is set to expand its food offerings with several new outlets going into a new precinct within the development on the site of the former Shades Arcade.

Hilton Queenstown’s Me and Mee Noodle Bar had a spice up in time for the ski season with a relaunch as Me and Mee Noodle and Spice Bar. Peter Thornley, executive chef of the Hilton’s signature lakefront restaurant Wakatipu Grill, says they closed the noodle bar for a short time just before the busy ski season to work on “a new bent.” About 60 people, many of them Kelvin Heights neighbours and local residents, were invited to the early July opening to test the new spiced up menu. There’s now a strong influence from 10th Century China in the dishes, including Bridge Crossing Noodles, Chicken Kung Po, Walking Chicken Po Gi and Jiangxi Three Shot Chicken, which Thornley says has an interesting tale of execution behind it. The dish is finished with a shot of chilli oil, soy and cider served in a clay pot.

20 . Hospitality/Thirst . August 2012


Appetizers.

Amanda Ede and Rosie Sop

er

Two young Southern chefs were delighted to win gold at the regional Otago Polytechnic Salon Culinaire cooking competition in Dunedin recently. Young Queenstown chef Amanda Ede (26), who began studying for a Bachelor of Culinary Arts degree in Dunedin this year, took out the gold medal with her Dunedin cooking partner Rosie Soper. The pair scooped the mystery box section of the competition and they were the only two on the day to win a gold medal out of 40 competing chefs from around the region. The six teams of two included experienced chefs. They had one hour to plan an Italian-themed main and dessert then 90 minutes to prepare both dishes. “Our main ingredient was salmon. We did a traditional cure with lemon and thyme, then grilled the salmon and served it with a lemon and fennel cream sauce, garlic roast potatoes and a deconstructed basil pesto and tomato salad,” says Ede. For dessert they served up red wine poached pear with honey and cream and an almond florentine. The budding chefs won an upmarket cookbook each and received certificates with their gold medals. During her years as a chef in Queenstown, Ede has worked at Saffron, Britannia, Waitiri Creek Winery, Lone Star and the Pig and Whistle pub.

A bottle of Central Otago pinot noir, signed by golfing legend Tiger Woods, sold recently for just over $10,000 at a charity auction in China organised to raise money for the Christchurch earthquake reconstruction. The 2008 Mt Rosa Pinot Noir received the highest price ever paid for a bottle of New Zealand wine and the vineyard owners were charging their glasses last month with the news. The jeroboam of wine (equal to about four litres) was donated by JD Brothers and Mt Rosa Wines. David Wu and Jeff Crawley of JD Brothers, an international trading company, and trade representatives for Mt Rosa, approached Tiger Woods at the Chinese Golf Open in 2011 and asked him for his signature to help out. Mt Rosa co-owner Jeremy Railton says he was honoured that Tiger Woods agreed to sign the bottle. “It’s pretty amazing that we’re able to add this accolade to our name, but even more than that we’re stoked that the money is going to such an amazing cause.” Only 25 jeroboams of 2008 Mt Rosa Pinot Noir were made by the winery, which is in the Gibbston Valley, near Queenstown. As with all top pinots in the world, the Mt Rosa Pinot was aged in French oak barrels for 11 months before being bottled. New Zealand Consul General and Trade Commission of Guangzhou Patrick English said the wine was of a high standard, but the added value was the signature. The wine added to the $397,398 raised at the charity event.

In Riccarton Road, Christchurch, Café Sismo has opened, offering breakfast, brunch, lunch, coffee and home-baked treats. Out of town on the Christchurch Akaroa Road, The Blue Duck Café is now headed up by Glen Swift, former head chef at Tiffany’s. Saturday night dinners are now on offer. And iconic Christchurch café C1 Espresso is soon to open alongside Alice in Videoland in the post office building on the corner of Tuam and High Streets.

To add to the plethora of food and beverage outlets that have sprung up in Sydenham, Christchurch, Sausage Sisters Café has opened in Colombo Street. Its sausage rolls are a signature dish – a treat many Cantabrians have enjoyed at the Saturday Farmers Market at Riccarton Bush.

August 2012 . Hospitality/Thirst . 21 Jeremy Railton with Chief the dog.


Chocolate.

For the love of chocolate Traditionally used to create many a decadent sweet treat, chefs around the country are now matching ribbons of chocolate with the likes of venison, crab and ostrich. Sue Fea delves into the art of creating and combining chocolate rubs, oils and sauces to find the possibilities are endless.

22 . Hospitality/Thirst . August 2012


Chocolate.

Chocolate has always been a decadent, delicious indulgence that few can turn down. It’s traditionally associated with desserts and sweet treats, however, chefs and chocolate makers in New Zealand are getting far more innovative. Chilli and other spices combined with dark chocolate are now popular and in Central Otago they’re even adding lavender to chocolate. It’s now used widely by chefs here to dress the plate or complement game meats, like venison, duck and even ostrich, because the flavours combine so nicely. Sidart owner Sid Sahrawat says the spicy chilli and cardamom flavours of Valrhona Xocopili used in a chocolate jus or chocolate jelly serve as the perfect base for venison or ostrich. He combines agar, milk and chocolate at around 90 degrees for this and once it’s set into a jelly, he blends it to a purée. White chocolate works beautifully with veal and Sahrawat also serves it as a ‘snow’ with sweet corn and crab. Put the white chocolate and butter in some liquid nitrogen, set it, crush it and scatter around the crab. Cocoa powder also emulsifies beautifully into a chocolate oil, often used for game dishes, while a chocolate crumb served beneath venison makes for a perfect entrée. “I think we can get more exciting with chocolate here in New Zealand. It depends where you eat. A lot of restaurants are quite creative, but it’s important to turn around and move on from the fondant and chocolate brûlée,” says Sahrawat.

Chef Sid Sahrawat’s chocolate ganache consisting of a chocolate cylinder filled with sweet liquid banana inside and chocolate.

August 2012 . Hospitality/Thirst . 23


Chocolate. One of his favourite chocolates to work with is Gunaja: “Obviously the style of chocolate changes with the dish.” However, customers never tire of the traditional chocolate sweet dessert. Sahrawat creates a plate of pure indulgence – a chocolate ganache consisting of a chocolate cylinder filled with sweet liquid banana inside and chocolate. Chocolate and milk are melted together and placed in a siphon gun then poured into a liquid nitrogen bath to set frozen. “When you bite into it the inside is still runny.’’ Queenstown’s True South Dining Room executive chef Ben Batterbury says chocolate is similar to wine in that it has a ‘terroir’, reflecting the flavour and characteristics of where the beans are grown. Large chocolate regions and plantations are now pitching their own unique local flavours with estate chocolate tasting becoming fashionable. “It’s quite interesting to get a different company’s range and try them side-by-side.” British Batterbury is cooking a lot with 75 per cent Tarakan. He likes its strong, earthy, tobacco flavour. “It’s quite robust and good for cooking.” Spanish Chocovic is a well-priced range that offers chocolate with yoghurt powder, which Batterbury says produces a nice clean finish. He also likes the Belgian Callebaut range and Valrhona’s Jivara milk chocolate is superb in a chocolate cheesecake. Batterbury’s been working closely with The Seriously Good Chocolate Company, an innovative Invercargill business, helping design chocolate rubs and a hot chocolate range.

24 . Hospitality/Thirst . August 2012

He uses dried spices – orange, juniper, star anise, sugar and cocoa in the rub. This is applied after cooking meat so as to avoid the risk of burning: “If you’re using chocolate the worst thing you can do to it is burn it, because it becomes bitter. Putting the rub on at the end removes that risk.” Chocolate oil using very dark (70 to 72 per cent) chocolate, cocoa powder and grapeseed oil, combines nicely drizzled over smoked venison or other game meats.

Seriously Good’s Belgium-trained chocolate maker Raphael Rausch says that “crystallisation curve” has to be just right. “Chocolate needs to be tempered properly to get that crunch and shine,” says Rausch, who is from Luxemburg. He spent five years as a teenager training at the Ceria Hospitality School in Brussels. “At night I put my chocolate at 45 degrees. I turn it off when I arrive in the morning then when it cools to 28 or 29 degrees I turn it


Chocolate.

back to 30 degrees, maintaining it at around 31 degrees. I keep it at that temperature for 20 minutes so I can mould it.” Good chocolate has a minimal 55 to 66 per cent cocoa butter and white chocolate is not technically chocolate because it doesn’t contain any, says Rausch. “In Europe we call them dark couverture, milk couverture or white base.” Rausch and owner Jane Stanton are passionate about chocolate. Stanton has been handcrafting pinot noir chocolates for Queenstown’s Gibbston Valley Winery for some time and is now going national with her wine-infused chocolate innovation, even breaking into the beer market. Alan Scott, Mission Estate, Seleni, Matua, and Yealands wineries are already on board with Seriously Good’s ‘Story of Wine as told by Chocolate’ initiative. Boxes of handcrafted chocolates infused with each winery’s individual varieties are produced to order. Breweries are also jumping on board for Seriously Good’s ‘Story of Beer as told by Chocolate’ with Speights, Emersons, Wigram, Moa, Tuatara and Invercargill Breweries signing up to be in the box. Stanton is now working with Stir Tea in Queenstown to design a range of tea chocolates. The company’s ‘regional’ range offers a bit of fun with an Auckland box featuring Jaffa, coffee flavour and pavlova-flavoured chocolates. Stanton’s Kiwiana range is taking off with the tourists, especially in the Asian markets, where they just love her quirky Sheep’s Poo and Cow Pad chocolate, using freeze-dried

blackcurrants and boysenberry. Other Kiwiana flavours include Gumboots, Maori Doll, 4Square and Pohutukawa. The NZ Tourism Board even uses this product to promote New Zealand offshore. Bluff oyster truff les and Muttonbird chocolates promote the Southland brand and her latest innovation is Reindeer and Morsels using seaweed and sesame. Her chef ’s range of chocolate also includes balsamic, orange and olive oil and dark and milk chocolate blocks, as well as the chocolate rub. Stanton is now working with Village Press Olive Oil’s Maureen Startup in the Hawkes Bay to produce an orange-infused chocolate oil. “We’re just at the experimenting stage, but we believe there’s a huge benefit from putting different infused olive oils into chocolate,” says Startup. Te Papa’s Austrian head chef Bernd Lippman says venison is naturally sweet so lends itself well to sweet flavours, especially wild venison. He seasons or rolls the meat in either 70 per cent chocolate or cocoa then cooks it off medium rare, sealing the nice juicy flavours inside a sweet coating. Chocolate and chilli combinations date back in Mexico where the sweetness of chocolate

and spice of the chilli work beautifully in cooking. Dark bitter chocolate works well with beef in a stir fry or chilli con carne. He has also been working with Stanton to produce a spicy hot chocolate, using cardamom and cumin. Clooney’s Des Harris says savoury notes like fennel work well with chocolate as a dessert. He serves up a baked crumb hot and cold chocolate mousse with fennel ice cream and cherry. Auckland chef Nick Honeyman, who has just launched his new restaurant, The Commons, in Takapuna, caramelises white chocolate in a sous vide vacuum pack then mixes it with maltodextrin to produce a powder. “In the mouth it melts and dissolves into white chocolate.” Beetroot and chocolate is also a delicious match. Honeyman roasts the beetroot in salt and makes a chocolate emulsion gel with Valrhona, cocoa powder, Shiraz vinegar and olive oil. “The bitterness of the chocolate really works well with the saltiness and sweetness of the beetroot.” Chocolate as we knew it is claiming new ground on the plate and the palate. The possibilities are endless. August 2012 . Hospitality/Thirst . 25


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Wildfire. Café Hanoi – Britomart Auckland – the kitchen and bar were designed and installed by Wildfire Commercial Kitchens and Bars.

Firing up the industry When Nils Danielsen started his commercial kitchen and bar design business Wildfire, all he had was a desk and a computer. That was 15 years ago. Now, the company is one of the top three kitchen design businesses in New Zealand. So what drives this business and why is it one to watch? By Jesma Magill

August 2012 . Hospitality/Thirst . 27


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Hilton Queenstown – Wakatipu Grill – Custom rotisserie and chargrill by Wildfire CKB.

A passage in a book lent to Nils Danielsen when he was setting up his commercial kitchen design-and-build business helped create one of the country’s leading designand-build teams. “One of the main messages in the book was: ‘to be successful, pick an opponent you want to compete with and then set out to beat them’,” Danielsen says. He won’t say who that company was but he does say: “It was the best advice because it gave me a goal to strive for and achieve.” Wildfire grew from an idea in 1996 and a successful collaboration between Danielsen and Tonci Farac; a Croatian-born hospitality entrepreneur who lived in New Zealand for 30 years. At the time, Danielsen was working as a sales rep with Mercers on the kitchen installations at SkyCity and when the installation was complete, he started looking at his long term options. Hiatus often reveals opportunities and Farac (the recipient of the 2003 New Zealand Restaurant Association Hall of Fame award), encouraged Danielsen to set up his own company and create bespoke display and open kitchens for the burgeoning New Zealand hospitality scene. Danielsen had the right credentials. In 1978, aged 17 years, he became an apprentice chef at the DB Hotel in Mt Maunganui and then worked at Wheelers Restaurant in

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Wildfire. Nils Danielsen is obssessed with details when it comes to kitchen plans/designs.

Ponsonby, Auckland. Later, the Regent in Melbourne beckoned, followed by a stint at the Lae International Hotel in Papua New Guinea, before returning to Auckland and the Longchamp Restaurant at the Regent. He was also executive chef for the 1992 America’s Cup team in San Diego; an opportunity of a lifetime, he says. “But I knew being a chef wasn’t long-term

and I was good at drawing. In previous roles I’d spent a lot of time working with contractors and I knew how to create detailed kitchen plans.” So, in 1995, Danielsen signed up for a trainee sales rep role with Gibpat, then clocked up further experience working for the industry’s design, build and supply companies before striking out on his own. In 1996 Danielsen and Farac established

Wildfire Speciality Restaurant Systems. “We started from humble beginnings with a desk, phone and one computer. Tonci was always ahead of the market. He brought in the first wood-fired pizza oven for his Cin Cin on Quay restaurant in Auckland and he’d just returned from a trade show in Europe, bringing in the first rotisseries and chargrill ovens as well.” A big catalyst for the business was working with well-known New Zealand equipment brands Moffat, Skope and Washtech. “Moffat had been searching for someone to do justice to their product range and we started specifying their products in our designs.” Wildfire’s first job was tweaking the kitchen design at the new D-72 Diner in Dominion Road. “We bought more computers, hired a CAD draughtsman and the work started flowing. CAD was relatively new at the time and not a lot of people were using it well. We designed and installed a lot of jobs at the newly developed Princes Wharf and got a good reputation with people who wanted something different.” These were Wildfire’s halcyon days. Then in early 1997, a young Kiwi, Michael Carter, joined Wildfire and he proved a significant appointment. A qualified chef, Carter had just returned from London and was looking for a long-term role in hospitality. He found that at Wildfire and Carter and Danielsen became known as the Dynamic Duo.

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12/07/12 1:00 PM

August 2012 . Hospitality/Thirst . 29


Wildfire. In July that same year, the Asian Crisis hit the global markets. This took the wind out of the industry sails for awhile but Wildfire remained grounded during the heady days and the company was solid. Whether they were working on large corporate projects or restaurants and cafes, the company’s focus on detail was indisputable. A defining moment for Wildfire was winning the Te Papa, Wellington contract in 1998. “It was our first contract through a major construction company and we were working with the country’s leading architects. Working with the big guys changed the game for us – we had to become a particular machine. Until then we had got by with a bit of “Kiwi number eight wire,” but we stepped up, completed the contract and it was a great success.” In 1999, Farac opened Wildfire restaurant on Princes Wharf in Auckland, which he ran with his brother. By 2001 he’d outgrown New Zealand and moved to Sydney to set up another Wildfire restaurant, with Danielsen’s company designing and fitting-out the kitchens. Danielsen and his wife Sue bought out Farac’s shares in Wildfire Specialty Restaurant Systems and to avoid confusion with the restaurant, renamed the business Wildfire Commercial Kitchens and Bars. Next, Wildfire won the Westpac Trust

Stadium contract in 1999, the Jade Stadium contract in 2002 and Waikato Stadium in 2004. And what Danielsen calls the “Everest” for the business, in terms of size and prestige, was securing the high-profile Eden Park contact in 2008 – designing and installing kitchens for Rugby World Cup 2011. Danielsen believes this was the largest food service contract ever awarded in New Zealand, with one main production kitchen approximately 1000 square metres, 22 food and beverage outlets, three service kitchens and two lounge bars. Appointing an experienced project manager and working with a focused, passionate team; he says the project – which was completed on time and to budget – went very smoothly. But victory was bittersweet because tragedy struck the small company halfway through the mammoth job. Michael Carter, aged just 39 years old, died unexpectedly on December 26, 2009. He and Danielsen had worked together for 12 very successful years and for the tightknit company, this was like a death in the family. “Michael added significant value to the business,” says Danielsen. “But he wasn’t only a business partner; he was a great friend and colleague too.” “He had a natural talent for the job and could adapt to almost any situation. With his passing, Wildfire had to regroup and

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30 . Hospitality/Thirst . August 2012

Portofino Takapuna – kitchen designed and installed by Wildfire CKB.

reorganise so our customers didn’t feel the direct effects. We exhibited at the Hospitality show in July the following year and reinforced to the market that we would become stronger


Wildfire.

and make sure we honoured Michael’s legacy to “never give up.” Everyone stepped up to minimise the void Carter left behind, especially James Heyder. Heyder had been with Wildfire since 2006 and eventually took on the role as Danielsen’s second-in-charge. He’d been involved with design and fit-out projects since 2001 and prior to joining Wildfire, worked at Butler Gibpat for five years. (Butler Gibpat closed down in 2006.) “Joining Wildfire was an easy fit,” Heyder says. “I knew Nils from working in the industry and was aware of the high level of detail in the drawing work. I really liked the detail.” Heyder notes a few changes in the industry, such as new technology creating equipment that’s more intuitive to use, and kitchen footprints shrinking in size; but says the process for formulating winning kitchen designs hasn’t changed. “It’s still how you test the space and work with the layout. A successful design is about space, storage, flexibility and the production you can get out of a small footprint. We’ve gained a reputation based on our experience of being able to pull all that together and we tend to get the more difficult jobs.” Current projects on the go for Wildfire include the Wellington Institute of Technology contract for Le Cordon Bleu New Zealand, plus some other large-scale commissions that are still to be announced. Danielsen attributes Wildfire’s success to its humble beginnings. “We’ve always put our customers first and we run things like a family business. We’re all passionate about the work we do and passionate about getting it right.” He says a successful designer has to get inside the client’s head to understand the brief and be on the same page. Budgets need to be realistic too. If a brief and budget don’t match, that usually means problems. “We’ve always had a reputation for quality work. We’ve never varied from our core business and have stayed focused to deliver the best solution. Our goal wasn’t to be the biggest, but we do want to be the best and every time we complete a job it’s really important to us that our clients are happy.” If there’s one criticism of Danielsen, it’s that he can be pretty obsessive about detail. But for a company that relies on attention to detail for its success; that sounds more like high-praise.

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Southland Te Papa.

32 . Hospitality/Thirst . August 2012


Southland Te Papa.

Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s all about the South Food and beverages hailing from the South Island were the stars of a special hospitality showcase in Wellington recently, writes Sue Fea .

August 2012 . Hospitality/Thirst . 33


Southland Te Papa.

Southland has traditionally been renowned for its hospitality – turning on a good feed over a beer. These days, southern producers are turning taste buds with a stunning range of high quality food and beverages. Southern produce and beer are usually the stars of the show at regular speciality Southland produce events held at Te Papa Store in Wellington. Everything from fat, plump Bluff oysters, Stewart Island salmon and wild game to cheese, chocolate and beer has had the punters drooling. Invercargill Mayor Tim Shadbolt goes along as “the entertainment” rolling up his sleeves alongside Christchurch celebrity chef Richard Till and cooking up a southern storm. 34 . Hospitality/Thirst . August 2012

Seriously Good Chocolate Company owner Jane Stanton has been instrumental in taking Southland to the capital. She says southern producers work twice as hard to get their product onto the national stage, but once it’s there the selling is done. “It’s all about promoting ourselves – where we live, what we do and showing them how great the south is. We’re proud of our produce. “It’s not easy for us down here. Aucklanders have got the market on their doorstep. We’ve got to think outside the square.” Stanton does that well. Her tailor-made chocolate ranges – Kiwiana with its Fish and Chip, Paua, Muttonbird, Bluff Oyster and Sheep’s Poo flavours – are a hit nationally and overseas.

With Till’s help, she has even turned the humble Southland swede into a tasty treat, caramelised and dipped in chocolate. She’s now working on a specialist range for Antarctica’s Scott Base – the Sheep’s Poo will be replaced with Penguin’s Poo. Stanton uses Back Country Cuisine freezedried boysenberries and strawberries in her chocolate. Owner Brent Crossan’s freeze-dry factory turns out 3000 meals a day used in the likes of tramping, search and rescue, army ration packs and by Australian Federal Police. He’s recently launched an Outdoor Gourmet range in Australia and hopes to introduce that to New Zealand soon. His latest project is Quick Cuisine noodle boxes, which are wholesome freeze-dried meals. “We don’t dehydrate. Our ingredients are freeze-dried and hold their flavour and shape. You can put a whole ice-cream in our machine and it comes out perfect, so we’re developing ice-cream bars to sell as well,” says Crossan. Chefs of more than 20 years, Eat on Windsor owners Mark Elder and Shelley White have launched a home-made range. Red Capsicum Relish, Tomato Chilli Jam, spicy Moroccan-style marinated olives and Mother’s Milk peanut, honey and satay dressing – a recipe stolen from the motherin-law – are all now on the market. New innovations on the way include Bread and Butter Pickle and Bacon Jam; an old American favourite using Canadian smoked bacon. Elder wouldn’t buy his sausages from anywhere other than Tuatapere Traditional Butcher Barry Malsen, who whips up any request to order.


Southland Te Papa.

Brewery Steve Nally from Invercargill beer and is corn a s successfully produce and potato pkin pum a ting crea at looking beer next.

A fifth generation rural Southland butcher, Malsen is turning out 30 to 40 different flavours from sweet chilli and mango and Texan chilli to pork, whole fennel seed and cracked pepper. “I’ve been told we’re a top-end butchery and delicatessen in the middle of nowhere,” laughs Malsen. He reckons the only way to cook a sausage is in a little fat, slowly: “For me oil belongs in cars.” Southern Seafood Products’ sea-run Stewart Island salmon is farmed and harvested on the island by Sanford Salmon. Owner Peter van Duivenvoorde reckons it has more intense colouring than alpine salmon and a longer shelf-life: “It has a crisper and sharper taste and tends to be more firm.” Bluff oysters go without saying, but on Stewart Island two oyster farms are growing some of the juiciest and plumpest oysters in the country. Maass Mussels and Oysters owner Jim Barrett says his Oyster Catcher’s Choice weigh an average 12 to 16 grams each and up to 50 grams plus. The farmed oysters are plumper because there’s more feed in Big Glory Bay than Foveaux Strait. They taste exactly like Bluff oysters only sweeter. And if you prefer some real meat, former cop-turned-professional game hunter, Callum Hughes can barely keep up with demand for his Fare Game wild game products. A true Southern Man, Hughes turns out pretty much anything that runs. Fare Game’s biggest seller is wild venison, followed by rabbit, hare, goat and wild pig. He shoots the pigs and goats himself. Choppers are brought

in to shoot the deer and contract shooters shoot the rabbits. “We’re often the first and last humans these animals see. They’re out in the wild in a stress-free environment. We don’t chase them.” Southland produces some of the best lamb in the country. Catlins-raised Twin Rivers Organic Lamb is now established throughout the lower South Island and in Wellington, with top luxury lodges, including Blanket Bay among its clientele. Athol Valley Meats is also impressing chefs, as is Leelands Lamb. Bill French’s Leelands is known for its sustainability, traceability and focus on animal welfare. Leelands markets direct to the end user and French is passionate about ensuring lambs are not stressed, especially in the week prior to slaughter. “All our fertilisers are natural and there’s that traceability. You know who the supplier is.” Southland also produces a stunning array of

quality cows’, sheep and goats’ milk cheeses. Blue River Dairy and Retro Organics have both been forefront in showcasing their cheese and milk innovations at Te Papa. Blue River also produces a naturally sweet sheep’s milk ice-cream. Speights may be marketed as the ‘pride of the south’, but it’s Steve Nally’s Invercargill Brewery that’s been gaining international accolades lately, with awards in Australia. The craft brewery’s Pitch Black stout and Wasp honey pilsner are its biggest sellers. Stanley Green is a pale ale and Nally produces a Boysenberry Pitch Black which is a take on a traditional fruit beer, and a pilsner. In the States they’re big on vegetable beers and having already produced a corn beer, pumpkin and potato are now on Nally’s radar. He has heaps more ideas to come, as do his fellow innovators from the south, who continue to think outside the square. August 2012 . Hospitality/Thirst . 35


Bar Food.

36 . Hospitality/Thirst . August 2012


Bar Food.

Bar food, bar none Shared foods, free-range and less of the deep-fried standards please â&#x20AC;&#x201C; thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s the clear message being heard from bar foods patrons at two popular Wellington outlets.

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By Kathy Ombler

August 2012 . Hospitality/Thirst . 37


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Bar Food.

A serving of sliders from The Tasting Room in Wellington, where matching bar food with beer and wine is a big focus.

Heaven help us, are we becoming more sophisticated with our drinking? It’s certainly a trend that’s been noticed in a couple of Wellington bars, and with that comes a demand for sharing interesting and quality bar food. Deep-fried wedges? Nah, make that feta, spinach and pine nut arancini with Tzatziki dipping sauce, thanks. Far fewer people come here now specifically to drink, says Gary Clarke at popular community bar the Southern Cross. “The transition of why people go into bars has been going on for some time. We’ve seen evolvement from public bars to sports bars to bars with a much greater food focus. It’s a morphing of space and it’s about the whole experience. Food has become a major part of that and that’s why our bar menu has grown extensively – definitely higher food sales is the swing. “It’s also about a shift away from traditional foods; letting people know we have options other than deep-fried,” confirms co-owner Liz Clarke. Across the city Cam Thurlow has seen the same trend in The Tasting Room, touted as one of the Kiwi pioneers of that British concept, the gastro pub. “We see The Tasting Room as the New Zealand interpretation of a bistro, essentially a pub where food is the backbone, rather

The new Taste of the Cross stone grill platter.

than the drink. So what we do is offer a lot of small bites and tastes people can eat at the bar. Rather than eat hot chips people can try different flavours while they are having a few beers. “Everything is fresh and seasonal, prepared onsite. We don’t use pre-packaged products,” he adds. Adding restaurant menu items to the bar snacks menu has also been part of the trend

towards offering more interesting bar foods, says Thurlow. “We’ve moved a couple of staples across, probably the main one is duck liver pâté. This is a common menu item around New Zealand but it’s not often seen as a bar snack and it’s a really popular seller. We do it with apricot puree and our own melba toast or in winter with our hot ciabatta, just to make it a bit heartier.” August 2012 . Hospitality/Thirst . 39


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Chef Profile.

Gary Clarke also says finger foods and snacks have become more popular as shared food, a factor taken on board when designing the new menu last month at The Cross (as the Southern Cross Bar is locally known). “We’ve really focused on shared plates from two people up and people can build as they wish, adding two or three different items.” The new “Taste of the Cross” platter, incorporating the bar’s well known stone grill, “cook it yourself ” concept, is a classic example. It’s so big it’s “wow” when it comes

out, says Gary. He’s not joking. The platter includes tastes of beef rump, lamb, prawns, halloumi, garlic bread, lemon olives, devils on horseback, chicken nibbles, sweetcorn balls, garlic butter, beer braised onions, fresh garden salad and fries. The new mini-burger platter at The Cross is another example. They are not sliders, Liz hastens to explain. “Sliders are very popular now but we think they are too big. These are smaller buns that come on a platter with a choice of lamb or vegan (mushroom and tofu) patties, plus lettuce, tomato and relishes. People build their own. They put in what they want and they are easy to share.” Conversely, Wagyu beef sliders are the ‘rock stars’ of the tasting plate menu at The Tasting Room, says Thurlow. “Essentially they are little American cheeseburgers. On an exploration of Las Vegas restaurants a few years ago we saw these little sliders on a snack menu. Americans love them, we thought they were fantastic but wanted a New Zealand twist so we use Wagyu minced beef from Canterbury with a good tart New Zealand cheddar, like for example, an aged Kapiti cheddar. You get three sliders in a serving but everyone knows if there are four in your group we’ll add one so that no-one misses out.” Matching bar foods with beers and wines has also been a focus at The Tasting Room, says Thurlow.

“When we opened the bar we had a broad range of beers on tap so we thought that would work great with an equally large snack menu. Each of the snacks matches a beer. “As the business progressed we were selling more wine than we initially anticipated. This is essentially a pub, a female-friendly, masculine environment – so we moved to wine matching as well.” “Probably our biggest-selling tasting plate is the spicy three cheese fondue, a twist on the Mexican chilli cheese dip. It’s a really simple dish; we use three cheeses with a gratinated mix of cheddar and mozzarella on top so it has that crispy brown topping that you can poke your bread into. It’s a great beer food: cheddar and beer is a natural match. It’s also a ‘feminine dish’ that’s great with a glass of bubbles. It’s been on our menu since day one.” Liz Clarke says another notable bar food trend is towards gluten-free, free-range and vegan food. “The demand is huge, so on the new menu we’ve tried to offer more choices, to make more than just a token effort.” Three croquettes on the new menu include smoked fish and potato, cauliflower and cheese plus the vegan mushroom and tofu. “At a trial staff tasting, this vegan option wowed the meat-loving bar staff. That spoke volumes, if you can win meat eaters over, it must be good.”

August 2012 . Hospitality/Thirst . 41


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“I’m adamant now we won’t compromise on free-range, she adds. “A few years ago there was resistance, it cost more and you had to charge for it and people wouldn’t order it. People now understand the difference and recognise the importance.” At The Tasting Room, croquettes have also been classic sellers since day one, says Thurlow. “We’ve done lots of different versions. We started with mountain goat and potato but had problems with the supply of goat so we’ve played with other combinations. Currently we’re serving smoked hoki and potato. The croquette is a combination of a slightly-fried treat. People like that with a beer but there is a lot of work that goes into them, they’re not deep-fried rubbish.” During winter, another big-seller at The Tasting Room is Wakanui bavette steak. “It’s essentially the classic French steak frites without the frites – we serve it seared really lightly and sliced on a wooden board with small rounds of bread to hold it together like a little sandwich, so you don’t get your hands sticky. It comes with a habanero mayonnaise. “A really popular fish snack is tarakihi goujons battered in golden lager then matched with golden lager. We put it on the menu as a fish and chip option for youngsters. Generally we try to steer clear of deep-fried options but when we took these off the menu we got more complaints than ever.” Keeping clear of deep-fried traditions is also driving Gary and Liz at The Cross, with some challenges. One ‘hard nut to crack’ is feeding late-night drinkers, says Gary. “At that time of night people identify a certain food that they want. Wedges are popular which is quite annoying. “It’s a work-in-progress. We’re looking at a sort of ‘supper club’ keeping more of our menu nibbles items on to be available later in the evening. Certainly pies are another option. We are the only Wellington outlet serving Siggy’s Pies, made on the Kapiti Coast. “It’s about letting people know we have options other than deep-fried. We know once they try them they are hooked. A good example is our Devils on Horseback (prunes wrapped in bacon) with locally made hot sauce Huffmans. Once people know what they are they love them. It’s about trying something new and as people get to know them, momentum picks up and you get a shift away from traditional foods. We’ve always seen that,” adds Liz.

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Food for Thought.

Skills are the new

world currency

A few weeks ago, HSI held a ceremony in Wellington where 60 hospitality graduates received their National Certificates and Diplomas in front of around 180 people mainly consisting of employers, family and other supporters. For many of the graduates at our Achievement Awards that night, it was the first time they had received any form of recognition for their skills and effort, and the sense of achievement was clearly evident when each graduate came on to the stage to receive their award. It was a great occasion and a timely reminder of what the ‘business of industry training’ is about. It is a partnership that involves a lot of commitment from learners, employers and those involved in training. It involves study time over and above the hours spent on the job, and it requires perseverance and support to see it through to the end. For many of our graduates, it is not ‘the end’ but a step on the way to greater achievement and success – for some the ‘training train’ is taking them towards achieving even greater goals and ambitions. A recent study released by the Organisation for Economic Development clearly states that while the value of currencies around the world rise and fall, skills are rapidly becoming the new world currency. For individuals, higher skills lead to better jobs, higher earnings, more security and a better quality of life. For economies as a whole, higher skill levels improve the productivity of the economy and associated economic benefits. So it is very important to celebrate success when people complete their hospitality training, acquire skills and achieve national standards of competence recognised by our industry. HSI has several award events in the coming months including the Modern Apprenticeship Competition at the New Zealand Culinary Fare in August, and our Excellence in Training Awards in October. This last event celebrates the work of the hospitality workplaces and individuals who organise, manage and train our learners and is an important recognition of the skills and dedication they contribute to the training partnership. So, let us recognise and celebrate achievement in training and continue to encourage young and not so young people to acquire and add to their skills and knowledge, to benefit themselves and the hospitality industry in the future.

Ken Harris is chief executive of HSI.

August 2012 . Hospitality/Thirst . 45


Food for Thought.

Providing support

We are full steam ahead here at the Association with the New Zealand Culinary Fare only weeks away. This event is a great thing to be involved in. Make sure your staff members are aware of the endless competitions they can enter. The Fare is a fantastic way to build staff morale in your business. If you ask any of the past competing businesses they will tell you that entering in a competition not only hones your skill set but also really brings the team together. When preparing for competitions it gives your staff a reason to improve techniques and really challenge themselves. This year we have reworked some of the competitions, and we are particularly excited about The Up and Coming Business Team of the Year Award. At the Association, we want to give those new to the hospitality industry an opportunity to tap into all the tools needed

to run a successful business. Unfortunately the statistics are grim – the average life span of a hospitality business is around 18 months. The Association currently provides help to its members however; this competition enables us to provide extra tools and resources for the winner – with a prize package of $20,000. A recent survey shows that the average life span of our members’ businesses is over three years, double what the average statistic is. We think that has a lot to do with the support the Association provides to its members. On that note, there still seems to be some confusion around how the trial period works. One of the most common mistakes is not having the employment agreement signed before the employee starts work. It is absolutely imperative to make sure this happens. Give the new employee the agreement and explain the terms and conditions of employment (including the 90

day trial period) to the employee before they start working for you. Another tip is to let the applicants fill out the Restaurant Association’s application form, which asks them if they agree to a 90 day trial, at the interview. This, combined with a signed agreement is very solid evidence for the trial period. If in doubt call us at the Association.

Marisa Bidois is CEO of the Restaurant Association of New Zealand.

Tasting days

Assembling interesting and affordable wine lists requires restaurateurs (with a keen interest in wine) and sommeliers (always keen) to stay current with what’s happening in the wine and beverage market. While visits from wine reps can be helpful, a great way to get a feel for what’s available is to attend a larger tasting. There are several times throughout

46 . Hospitality/Thirst . August 2012

the year where import and distribution companies hold a portfolio-wide tasting or a wine company offers new releases: HotRed Hawkes Bay, or the Negociants Road Show are recent examples. These are great opportunities for staff concerned with wine and beverage sales. Attending these tastings, especially the whole day events, requires some preparation and palate conditioning. If you’re a first-timer to one of the portfolio events consider the following suggestions to ensure your day’s successful, your palate survives and you don’t end up at work or driving ‘three sheets to the wind’ – drunk! A few days before the event take another look at the producers and winemakers who are going to be present and make a plan. Highlight the companies that interest you – especially the new players. Find out where their vineyards are, who the winemaker is and what varieties or styles may be on show. Focus on these companies and wines first. You’re not going to be able to taste everything on offer and palate fatigue will strike relatively quickly so be sure to get the business of tasting and learning done first. Have a big breakfast or lunch before you arrive at the venue and eat plenty of

carb-based food while there if on offer. Take a small, easy-to-manage notebook – spiral bound types are ideal. Figure out a few shorthand codes to speed things up: Fr+ (fruity plus), SF (Stonefruit dominant), Vd (Very Dry) or 5 (five-star wine). Keep your mobile phone on silent, but use the camera function to photograph labels and tech sheets if note taking isn’t your thing. Whites before reds or reds before whites – it doesn’t matter, but a sound approach is to work your way through any sparkling wines first; then target the white/red wines. It is very easy to get caught up in the social side of these events with fellow hospitality staff. Keep on task – you are, after all, representing ‘brand you’ as well.

Cameron Douglas is New Zealand’s first and only Master Sommelier.


Food for Thought.

The perfect match

Size matters. Thousands of words have been written and spoken about finding the perfect wine to match the specific flavours of a particular dish, but it can be difficult to achieve when all the wine on the list is in 750ml bottles. That’s when a favourite label, white or red, ends up wth the impossible task of matching everything from raw oysters to steak. If the restaurant or café has a comprehensive ‘by the glass’ list, it is possible to satisfy everyone at the table, but this can be an expensive exercise for the diners. I commend those establishments that offer various sizes such as 150ml, 375ml or 500ml carafes, but such apparent generosity can work only when a steady flow of customers is guaranteed. Which is why a new initiative from the country’s oldest winery deserves our support. Mission Estate, in Hawke's Bay, is now selling Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2011 and the silver medal-winning Estate Syrah 2011 in 500ml bottles. The products are aimed primarily at the retail market, but given that they are line-priced at under $10 wholesale they would be a great

buy for licensed cafés and restaurants wanting to offer more flexibility in the ways in which wine is sold to the customers. Couples wanting to enjoy a quick lunch before heading back to work could well be intimidated by the thought of sharing a 750ml bottle, yet a 375ml bottle would give them too little. And in any case, 375ml half-bottles are hard to find. Mission Estate’s initiative means that there is now another option. Let’s hope the idea catches on. If it does, Mission will obviously expand the range, and other companies will almost certainly adopt the idea. With all the publicity about bad drinking habits, surely anything that helps the customer enjoy exactly the amount of wine he or she wants without feeling that the bottle has to emptied, must be a good thing. In the meantime, restaurants and cafés should do all they can to offer wine in as many different sizes as possible. Technology can help, with machines that top up a half-empty bottle with inert gas, enabling it to be kept for a few days.

Without that assistance, make sure that the date of opening is marked on the label of any bottle destined to be sold in small carafes or by the glass. Three days is the absolute maximum keeping time for anything but fortified wine. At Al Brown’s Auckland outpost, Depot, it is easy to offer house wines by the glass because they come from a 20-litre keg produced specifically for this use. We are certain to see a lot more of this concept as other establishments adopt the idea. Wine is unique in being such a great match for food. That is its heritage and its future, and any eatery that encourages this always-enjoyable pastime should receive the enthusiastic support of the public. Cheers!

Vic Williams is cellar director for the New Zealand Wine Society.

Penalties for hospitality operators

far outweigh the crimes

Sadly we seem to have become a very punitive society with elections being won or lost on which party is toughest on crime, a sentiment which seems to have resonance with the public. We now need to have a new debate to ensure that the penalties are both scaled and genuinely are appropriate for any transgression, whether it be serious or minor. As it stands now the hospitality sector is being hit by penalties which far exceed the transgression. Take for example controlled purchase operations. These occur when the regulatory agencies send in a minor to check whether they are asked for ID or not. The failure for what is a test rather than an actual failure and real sale to a minor, can be a suspension ranging between one and three days. The loss of

a day’s trading is a very significant penalty. Take also the cases where gaming Trusts face a suspension for a wrongdoing by the Trust and that suspension means that a gaming venue also has to close their gaming operation. The gaming venue had no say and no influence whatsoever in the transgression of the gaming Trust, and yet it is they that have to bear the cost of closing their gaming room and the associated stigma in their local community when they had done absolutely nothing wrong. Then just around the corner we have the Alcohol Law Reform Bill, which further increases the penalties for transgressions. Indeed a liquor licence can be cancelled without reason. The Bill also now incorporates the populist three strikes

and you’re out. Nobody condone people breaking the law and there does need to be sanctions. However those sanctions need to be measured and appropriate for the offence occurred. In New Zealand, and particularly as it applies to the hospitality sector, the lawmakers have got it wrong.

Bruce Robertson is the chief executive of Hospitality New Zealand.

August 2012 . Hospitality/Thirst . 47


Thanks to Virtue Books, we have a copy each of Bangers to Bacon and Little and Friday to give away. To enter call 09 486 0908 or email admin@virtue books.co.nz Congratulations to last month's winners. Jax Cooks was won by Charlie Church of Wellington and The Tuscan Sun Cookbook was won by Denise Faulkner from Christchurch. Books can be purchased from Virtue Books. Call 09 486 0908 to secure your copy. Bangers to Bacon Jeremy Schmid Published by New Holland, 2012 RRP: $45 Hospitality special: $40 Well done Jeremy, a brilliant book and another accomplishment to a fast growing list. Bangers to Bacon is a New Zealand guide to making, cooking and using sausages and cured meats. Jeremy is the owner/chef of the popular Two Fifteen Bar and Bistro in Auckland’s Dominion Road and an innovator of the delicious range of Little Boys sausages. He was a recipient of a RANZ education award to study charcuterie at the Culinary Institute of America. Jeremy’s expertise in this area is now legendary and we are so fortunate that he is sharing his knowledge in Bangers to Bacon. This book is essential for chefs, students, manufacturers, home cooks and hunters.

Little and Friday Kim Evans Published by Penguin Books, 2012 RRP: $45 Hospitality special: $40 Kim Evans is a real success story, and no wonder as her food is divine. Well done to Kim’s mum for teaching her early. Kim’s mum was a Home Economics teacher in Taupo who would take Kim to the classroom from when she was two years old. Kim believes it is important to have a recipe with accurate measurements as a starting point and repeatedly baking the recipes to get a feel for the ingredients and processes. To become a great baker one needs to know what works and what doesn’t. This is a wonderful collection of café-type cakes and savouries. It is recommended for everyone.

48 . Hospitality/Thirst . August 2012


Bar Profile. Ice Bar..

The coolest bar in town NZSki officially launched what is believed to be New Zealand’s first ski-field ‘Ice Bar’ at the top of its Green Gates chairlift at the end of June, to the delight of skiers and boarders. Coronet Peak’s Ice Bar proved so popular that in mid-July the company opened another high altitude bar across the Wakatipu Basin at the top of the Alta chairlift on its Remarkables ski area. With temperatures regularly well below zero, you’d think the punters would want to warm through indoors. Instead, about 500 people a day were churning through the Coronet Peak Ice Bar in the July school holidays. NZ Ski’s general manager of sales and marketing Craig Douglas says the novelty outdoor bar, literally carved from ice with 50 . Hospitality/Thirst . August 2012

snow-packed bench-style seating, is proving to be the most popular of the mountain’s three bars. “It’s a stunning view and environment up there and people are enjoying stopping to soak that in.” Guests lounge in bean bags, director’s chairs, seats or benches built from snow or specially-designed loungers built using old skis to enjoy a hot cocktail or cool beer. With the majority of days clear and sunny, it’s proving to be a novel attraction for everyone from families and older skiers to young boarders. It’s been so popular that the mountain management is even toying with the idea of installing a DJ on the ice. Aussie visitor Matthew Curtain from

A new bar where the drinks are literally served ‘on ice’ is taking off at the top of two of the South Island’s most scenic ski areas. By Sue Fea

Brisbane was sold on his visit last month: “This is pretty sensational. It doesn’t get better than this and so close to home. Queenstown and Coronet Peak, to me it is world class”. NZ Ski general manager of food and beverage Jennifer Graham says the idea started last ski season on a much smaller scale “for a bit of fun”. The company’s chief executive and one of its directors were in Europe last year and saw ice bars operating on ski-fields there so decided to give it a go. Power was installed during the summer from the nearby lift, running a line through underneath the ski runs. The Ice Bar is now fully-stocked operating a cash register, eftpos


Bar Profile. Ice Bar..

and credit card facilities, a data cable and urns for the hot cocktails. Kiwi-made Zumwohl Schnapps got on board as sponsors as did Queenstown winery Amisfield, supplying funky bean bags and wine barrels for tables. Besides the usual beer, wine and spirits, the Ice Bar serves up a range of hot cocktails. A Hot Plum Pinot cocktail, made from plum schnapps, and Amisfield pinot noir, or a Green Gates Warmer, consisting of feijoa schnapps, cloudy apple juice and pear syrup are just the ticket for a tummy warmer at the top. Those wanting something stronger can tuck into Zumwohl Schnapps shots and there’s Arcadia champagne by the plastic flute for the more sophisticated ladies. The mountain’s production kitchen starts early whipping up gourmet sandwiches and sushi. The usual chips, muesli bars and chocolate are also on offer and a good range of soft drinks, coke, lemonade and juices for the kids. A heavy disguise of helmet and ski goggles

won’t cut it if you’re under age. “We have a pretty comprehensive alcohol management plan,” says Graham. “People tend to have one (drink) and go. If they’ve spent money on a ski pass they’re not going to spend all day in a bar.” High winds or a snowstorm could whip up at any time, so each night the crew packs up the Ice Bar into a nearby shed and re-sets it out each morning. The groomers even swoop through every night to smooth over the snow. Only the benches and bar remain. “It has to all be taken down because if it’s windy up there the bean bags could end up in Arrowtown (5kms away).” The logistics is the fun part every morning. “If there’s a big dump of snow then the groomers have to go in and dig the Ice Bar out again and rebuild the benches.” Regularly the food and beverage department at base building is called up on the phone to say stocks have run out. “So we have to give stock to the lifties at the bottom of Green Gates and send it up

on the lift with a staff member.” Graham says the ice bar was turning over close to some of the smaller restaurants on the hill in its first two weeks. She says the company will probably look at installing an Ice Bar at it’s third South Island ski area, Mount Hutt, near Christchurch, because it’s proved so popular. Across the valley, about 2500 metres above sea level, The Remarkables Ski Area Ice Bar opened on July 12 and had up to 20 people at a time consistently enjoying blue sky and perfect conditions on its first day. Ski area manager Ross Lawrence says the views from the 80 square metre bar down the lift across the valley and through the Southern Alps were the best any bar could offer. It’s not about the alcohol but the whole outdoor experience. If the demand continues to grow he says the company may look at building ice bars at other locations on the ski area. “I can imagine in the spring we will be inundated.” August 2012 . Hospitality/Thirst . 51


SALES EVENT OF THE YEAR

NOT TO BE MISSED! Tuesday 28th August

AUCKLAND Ellerslie Event Centre Guineas Room 80 – 100 Ascot Avenue Greenlane Tuesday 28th August 2012 11am – 6 pm Please contact your Account Manager for Expo details outside Auckland.

Deep Cut Specials 35+ Suppliers under one roof Extensive Product Sampling Food Provided STRICTLY TRADE ONLY


Sherry.

Not to be

trifled with Kathy Ombler went tippling in the home of sherry, Jerez, and discovered a

boutique winery/bodega perfecting traditional methods. Not a machine in sight and it’s regarded as one of the finest producers in the region. Tradicion Pedro Ximenez is one very old, very fine sherry (not to mention retailing at $100 bottle) and I’m being told to pour it over ice cream? Sabrina, my host at Bodegas Tradicion, is serious, and on a mission to educate people about sherry. “People treat it as an aperitif but you can also take it with food (it must always be slightly chilled) and use it for cooking. We cook a lot with sherry in this region.” Talk sherry in southern Spanish city Jerez and you’re talking antiquity. The city has been producing sherry for centuries, since the time of the Phoenicians, followed by the Moors. Both the names Jerez, and sherry, are derived from Sherish, the city’s Arabic name. Bodegas Tradicion was actually only established in 1998, albeit by a member of a family who has been making sherry in Jerez for 500 years. However, built against the walls of the old Muslim city, the ethos here is to make the oldest of wines using the oldest techniques. The grapes are hand-picked and the wines aged in American oak barrels by the traditional solera style. The wine is moved through five levels of barrels, a third of a barrel at a time to the bottom, floor level, and only then is it bottled. In modern bodegas machines do the transfers, at Bodegas Tradicion the wine is siphoned by mouth into a decanter then poured by ‘canoa’ (canoe) into the barrel below. Temperature control throughout the ageing process is all natural. Sand spread on the bodega floor is watered for cooling. The walls are thick, the windows face the sea and are covered with mats to hide the sun and let in the breeze. In summer the temperature can be 45 degrees in the street and 25 inside the bodega. The boutique-size Bodegas Tradicion produces 15,000 bottles a year and every one of them is bottled by hand, filtered through paper filters. Labelling is also by hand, with the cellar master’s numbering on each, individual label; wax is heated for the tops and stamped with the winery

crest. (Each bottle comes with two tops, the sherry continues to ferment and improve in the bottle and the second top helps seal its longevity.) Three of the bodega’s four classic sherries, Palo Cortado, Oloroso and Amontillado, are officially rated VORS 30 (very old rare sherry, more than 30 years old). The deliciously rich Pedro Ximenez is VOS 20 (very old sherry, more than 20 years old), its grapes dried on grass mats in the sun in the artisan process called soleo.

The verdict: After its double aging

process the pale and very dry Amontillado is nutty, a taste of figs and fruit that lingers on and on. The Oloroso is darker, more full bodied and brings the aroma of the oak, it is smooth, a roasted smoky vanilla, or bitter orange, perhaps. Aside from drinking it, slightly chilled, Sabrina recommends cooking it with game meats or the region’s classic oxtail stew. Palo Cortado is a rare, mysterious wine, with this the cellar master can make his destiny, says Sabrina, adding that it’s great to accompany paella, or gazpacho. It is similar to the Amontillado but drier and lighter. The afore-mentioned Pedro Ximenez sticks to the glass. It is velvety, sweet but not sickly

and suggests figs, chocolate, prunes and honey. It’s the most versatile sherry, says the ever helpful Sabrina. “You can pour a little over ice cream, put it in a sorbet or match it with blue cheese. Or you can start with breakfast on this one.” Forty per cent of Bodegas Tradicion sherries are exported, the remainder sold to specialised wine bars throughout Spain. With retail prices ranging from $80 to $100 per bottle, they are regarded as premium sherries. As are the bodega’s two brandies; the 20 year old Tradicion Gold ($100) and 40-year-old collector’s tipple, Tradicion Platinum ($450). August 2012 . Hospitality/Thirst . 53


The Panel. Gin.

Gin has a long and sometimes shady history, as I may have pointed out before. By Don Kavanagh It is always associated with England, although it didn’t reach those shores until 1688, when some folk decided they’d prefer to have the Dutchman William of Orange as their king instead of a Scotsman. Developed in the Netherlands as a stomach tonic, the original gin was a strongly juniperflavoured spirit, but when it came to England, it came into its own. Not without a few problems along the way, of course. At first, no licence was needed to make gin, which meant thousands of ginmills popped up in London alone and the product was often mixed with such dodgy ingredients as turpentine and creosote to cover up the vile flavour. Cheap and readily available, it kicked off a long upsurge in crime as the poor of London sought money for gin and a brief respite from their cares. However, in the 1700s, the government of the time introduced taxes on gin and gradually the prices rose beyond the reach of the poor. It also improved the quality of the product immensely, as better-off customers demanded a cleaner, more sophisticated

spirit. With the spread of the British Empire, gin also spread, becoming the drink of choice throughout the world. It developed into two distinct styles: London dry gin is a more austere, dry version of the spirit, while the Plymouth style developed into an oilier, sweeter style. But gin’s popularity wasn’t always assured. By the 1980s, gin was in something of a decline, perceived to be the province of maiden aunts and retired colonels. It wasn’t until the cocktail boom of the late ‘90s and early ‘00s that gin’s ascent became unstoppable. These days there are so many styles available that it can be confusing to know what to stock. With a plethora of premium gins available, it’s pleasing to see bartenders getting to grips with the individual qualities of each brand and often usinºg different gins for different drinks, as some will be more suitable for martinis, while others will make a better Tom Collins. What was interesting about this month’s

tasting was the fact that English gins were in the minority. Three were Scottish, two English and one Spanish, which was interesting from a country not normally associated with the spirit. This month’s tasting was held at Sale Street and we’d like to thank Steve and his team there for their generous hosting. Joining myself and regular panellist Dave Batten were Zumwohl’s Graham Stenberg and 1010 brewer Mike Stimpson and we’d also like to thank Mike for the jug of Jafa he provided as a palate cleanser. And we’re introducing a new feature to our tastings. Some time ago, we awarded star ratings for products we tasted, but that was curtailed after complaints from some suppliers. However, we felt it was still important to recognise any products that stood out in the tasting, so we have introduced our Star of the Show award, which will go to the wine, beer, spirit or liqueur that stands out as being the best tasted that day by our Panel. This ensures that exceptional drinks do not go unrewarded.

From this month we are getting rid of prices on the products we taste, as RRPs mean nothing to the trade and trade prices are so fluid. Instead we have introduced price bands. In place of a price, each tasting note will include a price band covering the prices in the following scale: $$$$$ - 50 and up • $$$$ - 40-50 • $$$ - 30-40 • $$ - 20-30 •$ - 20 and under

54 . Hospitality/Thirst . August 2012


The Panel. Gin. The Botan ist

From the Bruichladdich Distillery on the whisky-soaked island of Islay, this is an incredibly botanical gin with every aroma you could imagine – juniper, coriander, basil, citrus, aniseed…the list goes on and on. On the palate it’s curiously salad-like, with hints of salt, basil, tomato and olive oil. It’s a massively complex gin with huge flavours – star of the show, by a whisker. PDP $$$$$ Hancocks Wine, Spirit & Beer Merchants Phone: 0800 699 463 sales@hancocks.co.nz www.hancocks.co.nz

Broke r's London Gin

The bottle with the bowler hat and a classic gin. Soft and gentle on the nose, with lovely wafts of lemon aromas . Gentle on the palate, with very little spirit burn and really clean flavours of lemon and juniper. An ideal gin and tonic ingredient and it will go well in a classic martini. PDP $$$ Federal Geo Ltd Phone: 0800 846 824 federalgeo@xtra.co.nz www.federalgeo.co.nz

★STAR of the SHOW

Caorunn Gin From the Balmenach distillery, this has one of the more interesting noses we’ve come across in a gin. With an almost grape-like note at the front and lovely citrus tones, it’s inviting and accessible. The palate is outstanding, with great herbal notes of cardamom, basil and juniper. Great line and length finish too, a new classic.

Gin Mare

Made in a custom-built still in a 14th Centur y Spanish church, this has all the flavours of the Mediterranean. The nose is full of basil, oregano, olive oil and even tomato, while the palate shows pepper, rosemary, more basil and oregano and the finish is full of citric, spicy notes. Outstanding gin.

PDP $$$$$

PDP $$$$$

Eurovintage Phone: 09 588 4262 or 0800 338 766 info@eurovintage.co.nz www.thirstycamel.co.nz

Eurovintage Phone: 09 588 4262 or 0800 338 766 info@eurovintage.co.nz www.thirstycamel.co.nz

Hendrick’s Gin

No. 3 London Dry Gin

Another Scottish gin, this time from the people who brought you Glenfiddich. Beautiful nose, packed with juniper, spice and that characteristic cucumber note and the palate is complex and perfectly integrated. A glorious, long, clean finish tops it all off. Effortlessly brilliant gin. PDP $$$$$ Federal Geo Ltd Phone: 0800 846 824 federalgeo@xtra.co.nz www.federalgeo.co.nz

From the renowned wine merchant house of Berry Bros & Rudd, this is typically English gin – sharp and fresh on the nose with a pepper and fresh lime palate. Beautifully balanced and well integrated, it’s a lovely gin and an ideal base for a classic martini. PDP $$$$$ Negociants New Zealand Phone: 0800 634 624 ordersnz@negociants.com www.negociantsnz.com

August 2012 . Hospitality/Thirst . 55


Wine. Peter's Picks.

Proudly distributed by 56 . Hospitality/Thirst . August 2012

Federal Geo Ltd | P: 0800 846 824 | E: federalgeo@xtra.co.nz


The Panel. Brandy, Cognac & Armagnac.

Swimming in the waters of life Mention brandy and the image usually conjured up is of a snifter of expensive Cognac being sipped after dinner in an exclusive club.

That, or a large, loud rapper extolling the virtues of a particular brand while waving a submachine gun and boasting about how rich he is. And certainly Cognac and Armagnac tend to be seen as the upper echelons of the brandy world, but there is far more to brandy than that. Brandy takes its name from the Dutch word “brandewijn”, meaning burnt wine. It’s essentially a distillation of a particularly undrinkable base wine made from incredibly acidic grapes and more properly sits among the eau de vie sector, which means “water of life”. The eau de vie category covers a multitude of drinks from the akvavits of Scandinavia and the schnapps of Germany to the grappas of Italy and the slivovitz of the Balkans, all hugely popular drinks in Europe. While they all count as eau de vie – which

covers any spirit distilled from fruit – the methods of production vary. Brandy is distilled from wine, while grappas (and French marcs) are distilled from the lees, the solid cap of grape matter left over once juice has been run off in winemaking. That means grappa is the only spirit in the world actually distilled from a solid rather than a liquid. Schnapps and “fruit brandies” such as kirsch and slivovitz tend to be made from distillates of the actual fruit, rather than the flavoured vodka method of simply infusing base spirit with a fruit flavour, so they tend to be more subtle, complex and interesting. These eaux de vie are huge in Europe and are also making inroads in America, so we might as well be prepared to see more customers asking for them here shortly, which is why we opened our brandy tasting to include the entire eau de vie category,

because there are some excellent examples out there now, just waiting to be discovered. This month’s tasting was held at Sale Street and we’d like to thank Steve and his team there for their generous hosting. Joining myself and regular panellist Dave Batten were Zumwohl’s Graham Stenberg and 1010 brewer Mike Stimpson. And we’re introducing a new feature to our tastings. Some time ago, we awarded star ratings for products we tasted, but that was curtailed after complaints from some suppliers. However, we felt it was still important to recognise any products that stood out in the tasting, so we have introduced our Star of the Show award, which will go to the wine, beer, spirit or liqueur that stands out as being the best tasted that day by our Panel. This ensures that exceptional drinks do not go unrewarded.

ZUMWOHL KIRSCH 66% 500ml A stunning drink. Weighing in at 66% abv, it’s no shrinking violet, but it’s so easy to drink that it’s easy to forget how strong it is. Full of chocolate and cherry notes on the nose, the palate is amazingly clean, with an understandably huge alcohol hit. Once that clears, though, what’s left is a perfectly pure and clean blast of cherries that goes on forever. A unique and impressive drink that is already making a hit on the cocktail scene, but it’s also fantastic with tonic in a long drink. Star of the Show. PDP $$$$$ Aotearoa Distillers Limited Phone: 0800 4 ZUMWOHL (986 96) order@zumwohl.co.nz www.ZUMWOHL.co.nz

★STAR of the SHOW

From this month we are getting rid of prices on the products we taste, as RRPs mean nothing to the trade and trade prices are so fluid. Instead we have introduced price bands. In place of a price, each tasting note will include a price band covering the prices in the following scale: $$$$$ - 50 and up • $$$$ - 40-50 • $$$ - 30-40 • $$ - 20-30 •$ - 20 and under

August 2012 . Hospitality/Thirst . 57


The Panel. Brandy, Cognac & Armagnac. Carpene MALVOLTI Riserva

Hine VSOP

An Italian brandy made in the French style rather than the grappa style. Full of sweet fruit and polished wood on the nose, while the palate shows soft fruit notes of banana and marshmallow and a touch of wood, before finishing dry. Plenty of flavour for cocktail making. PDP $$$ A Touch of Italy Phone: 0800 4 286 824 sales@touchofitaly.co.nz www.eatily.co.nz

Quite a different Cognac, with an incredibly warm, rich cereal note on the nose, almost like walking into a grain store. That fades on the palate, leaving a lovely raisiny flavour, backed up by acetone and a touch of menthol. The finish recalls the nose with nice earthy tones. PDP $$$$$ Federal Geo Ltd Phone: 0800 846 824 federalgeo@xtra.co.nz www.federalgeo.co.nz

KWV Brandy

Courvoisier VSOP

A five-year-old brandy from South Africa and a real charmer. This consistently punches above its weight, offering sweet, fat fruit on the nose and lovely dried grape flavours. Finishes nicely, keeping its basic elements in sweet harmony. PDP $$$ Federal Geo Ltd Phone: 0800 846 824 federalgeo@xtra.co.nz www.federalgeo.co.nz

The standard-bearer of the Cognac world and it’s hard to argue. Classically smooth, elegant nose, full of raisins, caramel and a hint of spice, followed by rich, lush dark fruit and spice flavours across the palate. Rightly a market leader, this is more stylish than a Rolls Royce full of French supermodels. PDP $$$$$ Beam New Zealand Phone: 09 915 8444 info@beamglobal.com www.beamglobal.com

Janneau Armagnac 8YO

Sessantanni Grappa di Primitivo 500ml

An eight-year-old Armagnac and displaying all the quality of the region. Complex aromas of wood, fruit, spice and even a touch of sandalwood turn into flavours of citrus, pepper and even a hint of cinnamon on the palate. Classic Armagnac and a very classy drink. Also available in 12YO, 18YO, 25YO. PDP $$$$$ Federal Geo Ltd Phone: 0800 846 824 federalgeo@xtra.co.nz www.federalgeo.co.nz

Made from the lees of primitive (zinfandel) wine, this has a real smell of the still about it; coppery, grapey and carrying a touch of smoke. A big grappa on the palate, with the red grape flavours coming through before a sweetish finish that doesn’t outstay its welcome. PDP $$$$ A Touch of Italy Phone: 0800 4 286 824 sales@touchofitaly.co.nz www.eatily.co.nz

JOHANNESHOF EDELBRAND GRAPE BRANDY

JOHANNESHOF EAU DE VIE D’EMMI GRAPPA

A brandy made right here in New Zealand from the pressings left over from the winery’s award-winning wines. There’s a hint of gewürztraminer in this one, with ripe fruit aromas and a touch of honeysuckle. Smooth and smoky on the palate and a lovely crisp finish. PDP $$$$ North Island, Co-Pilot Distributors Steve Caplan Phone: 09 412 9137 steve@copilotdistributors.co.nz South Island, Hop & Vine Terry Mitchell Phone: 03 342 3228 info@hopandvine.co.nz

Made from the lees of Johanneshof’s brilliant bubbly, this reflects its origins, with a lean, racy, citrus hit on the nose, followed by a fiery burst of spirit on the palate. That cools to leave a tingly, peppery citric glow in the mouth. PDP $$$ North Island, Co-Pilot Distributors Steve Caplan Phone: 09 412 9137 steve@copilotdistributors.co.nz South Island, Hop & Vine Terry Mitchell Phone: 03 342 3228 info@hopandvine.co.nz

58 . Hospitality/Thirst . August 2012


LUIGI FRANCOLI MOSCATO GRAPPA What a great nose – full of fresh straw and musky lees notes, just jumping out of the glass. The palate opens up like the nose, but the grape character comes through quite strongly after a while and it finishes beautifully, leaving traces of flavour echoing around the mouth. PDP $$$$$ Eurovintage Phone: 09 588 4262 or 0800 338 766 info@eurovintage.co.nz www.thirstycamel.co.nz

LUIGI FRANCOLI 3 YEAR OLD GRAPPA A three-year-old grappa that closely resembles brandy on the nose –think polished wood and raisins. That continues on the palate, but in a really stylish way, with clean fruit flavours overlaid with coppery wood notes. Very commercial in style and very enjoyable. PDP $$$$$ Eurovintage Phone: 09 588 4262 or 0800 338 766 info@eurovintage.co.nz www.thirstycamel.co.nz

Francoli Oro di Barolo Made from Barolo pressings, this is a really powerful grappa. Full of funky, almost malty aromas, underpinned by a sweet fruit, it opens up on the palate with great clean, minty, peppery flavours and finishes like an assassin – cool, calm and collected and with an undeniable style. Fantastic sipping grappa. PDP $$$$$ Eurovintage Phone: 09 588 4262 or 0800 338 766 info@eurovintage.co.nz www.thirstycamel.co.nz

Zumwohl Plum A plum schnapps made right here in New Zealand and absolutely packed with juicy black doris aromas on the nose. It’s really meaty for a schnapps, with plenty of flavour and a smooth, silky finish. A great alternative to flavoured vodka and equally good in a cocktail or as a long drink. PDP 700ml $$$$ PDP 375ml $$ Aotearoa Distillers Limited Phone: 0800 4 ZUMWOHL (986 96) order@zumwohl.co.nz www.ZUMWOHL.co.nz

It flowers in winter with Monin Add the sweet aroma and taste of flowers to your cocktails this Winter with MONIN syrups. Delicate flavours to remind you that summer is just around the corner! MONIN Rose Syrup The mystic, elegant rose has been named the “Queen of Flowers”. MONIN Rose features all the fragrance and the elegant subtlety of the rose flower to perfectly accent your cocktails and desserts. With an intense nose of rose petals, a flowery rose aroma and a bright pink colour to capture all your senses. MONIN Elderflower Syrup The powerful flowery aroma of MONIN Elder Flower syrup will allow you to create hot and frozen drinks as well as cocktails for an original result that will seduce and astonish your customers : a few drops in a flute of Champagne, in a white spirit based cocktail or simply with fruit juices. Strong floral smell with honey notes and distinctive, tart and juicy taste reinforced by a subtle light gold colour.

Bubbling Rose Spritz • 20 ml MONIN Rose syrup • 50 ml Perrier water • 1 00 ml Sparkling Rose wine Method: Add MONIN rose syrup, chilled Perrier water & sparkling wine into a flute glass. Stir to combine. Decorate drink with rose petal or small rose flower Option: Replace MONIN Rose syrup for MONIN Elderflower syrup and add white sparkling wine. This drink can be served in large wine glass over ice.

Contact your Stuart Alexander sales representative for more information or call Consumer Services, phone 0800 188 484 Discover ultimate recipes on www.monin.com


Wine. Sparkling.

Bubbly

personalities It might not seem like the season for bubbles, but for the on-trade it is. Now is the time to look at wine lists for the coming months, when the seasons change and the party fever gets more intense and sparkling wine should be part of that. Most bars and restaurants will have their own favourites when it comes to fizz, whether out of personal taste or long-standing contractual commitments and the usual suspects will all be well represented on lists. And so they should; sparkling wine is a big seller and can be a nice money earner for retailers. A well-chosen wine, offering good flavour, structure and finesse can provide a tidy income as spring becomes summer, so it’s a good idea to get the punters used to your choices now. The real attraction of sparkling wines are in the bubbles. There’s something irresistible about a glass of foaming wine, bubbling over with the promise of rich luxurious drinking. It’s the perfect way to start a meal or to

finish a miserable day at work, so it’s hardly surprising that so many people love it. Of course, everyone loves champagne. Or at least they say they do. Many punters really don’t know the difference between Champagne and sparkling muscat, but the crucial point is that they do know what style of sparkling wine they like. Most often this is the standard pinot-chardonnay blend, but there are new grapes on the scene these days too. Sparkling sauvignon is everywhere now, although that is more a result of having an oversupply of often over-cropped sauvignon grapes. Similarly sparkling pinot gris has hit the shelves, for much the same reason. The great Champagnes use pinot noir, pinot meunier and chardonnay (and some meslier in exceptional cases) and the mix of fruity pinot and citric chardonnay seems to have hit the spot for most people. As I said earlier, sparkling wine does have

a set of “usual suspects”, so it was nice to try some different bubbles for this tasting. The wines we tried are not your well-known sparklers, but they all offer something different that will tempt the palates of the daring. After all, you’ve already got your workhorse sparklers, so this is a chance to have a look at some that may have been overlooked when the lists are compiled. And we’re introducing a new feature to our tastings. Some time ago, we awarded star ratings for products we tasted, but that was curtailed after complaints from some suppliers. However, we felt it was still important to recognise any products that stood out in the tasting, so we have introduced our Star of the Show award, which will go to the wine, beer, spirit or liqueur that stands out as being the best tasted that day by our Panel. This ensures that exceptional drinks do not go unrewarded.

From this month we are getting rid of prices on the products we taste, as RRPs mean nothing to the trade and trade prices are so fluid. Instead we have introduced price bands. In place of a price, each tasting note will include a price band covering the prices in the following scale: $$$$$ - 30 and up • $$$$ - 20-30 • $$$ - 15-20 • $$ - 10-15 •$ - Under 10

60 . Hospitality/Thirst . August 2012


Wine. Sparkling.

★STAR of the TASTING★

Brown Brothers Prosecco NV

Grandin Methode Traditionelle NV

No 1 Family Estate Number 8

A stunner, frankly, and we never say that lightly. A Champagne-style fizz with a beautifully deep, yeast autolysis note on the nose, followed by warm brioche tones. Just gorgeous on the palate, with lovely fruit and toast flavours and a lingering, ethereal finish. Star of the show.

Quite a different offering this – it comes from the Loire region of France, which is famous for its sauvignon and chenin blanc. There may well be a bit of chenin in this, given the smoky, fruity nose. Dry as a bone, with a big yeasty character on the palate and a dry finish. An interesting drop.

This is a real crowd-pleaser of a wine, from a company that does bubbles better than most people. Lively fruit with a hint of brioche on the nose, followed by a gorgeous lemon sherbet note on the palate. Rich and lush and a real charmer of a wine.

PDP $$

PDP $$$$

PDP $$$

Brown Brothers New Zealand Phone 021 994 009 djmchenry@ brownbrothers.co.nz www.brownbrothers.com.au

Brown Brothers New Zealand Phone 021 994 009 djmchenry@ brownbrothers.co.nz www.brownbrothers.com.au

Federal Geo Ltd Phone 0800 846 824 federalgeo@xtra.co.nz www.federalgeo.co.nz

No 1 Family Estate Phone 03 572 9876 marketing@no1wine.co.nz www.no1familyestate.co.nz

A lovely little wine, with a tart apple and pear nose and a hint of lemon zest. It has a nice soft mousse and flavours of Granny Smith apple and ripe lemon and finishes with a zingy acidity. A fantastic by-theglass offering for any bar or restaurant, as well as coping well with lighter foods.

Brown Brothers Patricia Pinot NoirChardonnay 2006

PDP $$$$

August 2012 . Hospitality/Thirst . 61


Wine. Peter's Picks. Peter’s Picks are independently selected by wine writer Peter Saunders. This feature is designed with bars in mind and reflects a mix of factors including, price, availability and overall drinkability.

Domain Road Vineyard Pinot Noir 2009 Domain Road is part of the Bannockburn sub-region of Central Otago. Here, a carefully tendered vineyard is developing a highly respected portfolio of three or four varieties showing very well by fruit, texture and balance. This is one of them, a ripe-fruited pinot with medium body and just enough oak and tannin condiments to set it off perfectly Starting to show its best – into 2015.. PDP $$$$ Co Pilot Distributors Phone: 09 412 9137 steve@copilotdistributors.co.nz

Waipara Hills Central Otago Pinot Noir 2010

Mills Reef Elspeth Gimblett Gravels Syrah 2010

Well-rounded and balanced style from vineyard at Bendigo. Youthfully vibrant yet unfolding well, a wine to enjoy air-time or bottle age, the cherry tones with the light spiciness working very well with cool-weather courses. A fine texture emerging with the fruit gives a satisfying glass of very good Central Otago pinot. Plenty of time ahead.

A trophy winner in London last month. Gutsy, well textured and flavoursome Hawke’s Bay syrah without depending on a lot of oak. A little pepper, heaps of dark berry-fruit characters; a wine ready for dinner but which will grow further over the next couple of years in the bottle. PDP $$$$$

PDP $$$$ Hancocks Wine, Spirit & Beer Merchants Phone: 0800 699 463 sales@hancocks.co.nz www.hancocks.co.nz

Domain Road Vineyard Pinot Gris 2011 ‘Mouth-watering’ says the back label and indeed it is. Near dry, very flavoursome yet with a supple touch of elegance which is delicious to enjoy, whether late afternoon, with a plate of antipasto or as a refreshing after-work glass of wine. Very nice wine, into 2014. PDP $$$ Co Pilot Distributors Phone: 09 412 9137 steve@copilotdistributors.co.nz

62 . Hospitality/Thirst . August 2012

Mills Reef Winery Phone: 07 576 8800 info@millsreef.co.nz www.millsreef.co.nz

Charcoal Gully Estate Sallys Pinch Central Otago Pinot Noir 2011 Mt Pisa vineyard north of Cromwell. Cherry-toned red colour, not heavy yet nicely flavoursome with spicy plum traits with a little oak in behind. A youthful and elegant pinot with a classy future as it expands; all the flavour components are here, well balanced and ready to unfold over the next 2-3 years. PDP $$$ Bespoke Wine Company Phone: 027 645 2240 fiona@bespokewines.co.nz www.bespokewines.co.nz


Wine. Peter's Picks.

Mt Difficulty Central Otago Chardonnay 2009 Extraordinary wine as a generic provincial Central Otago statement, full of class and finesse; oak in limited use and allowing the fruit and territory to speak. Helped by a third year of age, a top-flight chardonnay unfolding as a classic, serious wine and a tribute to the team in behind from vineyard through winery.

Mt Difficulty Growers Series Lowburn Valley Chardonnay 2010 Single-vineyard north of the Bannockburn home site gives this finely tuned wine a lot of finesse, an elegant quality still emerging with bottle age. Fresh, river-stone style of minerally chardonnay which will satisfy immensely now and through the next 3-5 years.

PDP $$$$

PDP $$$$

Lion Phone: 09 358 8692 www.lion-nathan.com

Lion Phone: 09 358 8692 www.lion-nathan.com

From this month we are getting rid of prices on the products we taste, as RRPs mean nothing to the trade and trade prices are so fluid. Instead we have introduced price bands. In place of a price, each tasting note will include a price band covering the prices in the following scale: $$$$$ - 30 and up • $$$$ - 20-30 • $$$ - 15-20 • $$ - 10-15 •$ - Under 10

Come a little closer… Sacred Hill Wines is expanding, with the launch of Sacred Hill Wine Company. We now market, sell and distribute our highly regarded wine portfolio directly to you, bringing you closer to the people who craft the wine. To find out who your Regional Territory Manager is, contact us on: 0800 WINECO (946 326) sales@sacredhill.com | sacredhillwineco.com

SACRED HILL WINE COMPANY


Marketplace.

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Hospitality / Thirst August 2012