Wednesday, 30 September 2009
I hit one snag, just as I was about to post this it suddenly occurred to me that I'd better check it wasn't a family secret recipe! So I phoned Simon's folks tonight and checked, and sure enough, I'm safe, this one is a free for all, and very typical of a Bavarian style potato salad.
So, for your viewing, cooking and tasting pleasure (and believe me, it tastes fantastic!), Bavarian Potato Salad Pictorial recipe. Note there are no quantities - I was never given any after all!
If you click the photo it will take you to my flickr page which also includes the instructions.
Saturday, 12 September 2009
Having just opened a wine that was a bit too past it to drink, we decided to open a Brick Bay Wines 2007 Pinot Gris from Matakana.
This is a very alcoholic Pinot Gris, both to the nose and taste, to the extent that I doubt I would have picked it as a Pinot Gris if I didn’t know what it was. This is a medium-bodied wine with a long tail.
Very pale straw in colour and initially I was picking up apricot to taste, however unfortunately I found the strong alcohol flavour then overtook the wine. Jane found the fruit/alcohol balance was okay and the alcohol contributed more to mouth-feel than flavour.
The wine was initially at room temperature, so I chilled it for a bit and found that it improved and the balance was better, although in my view there’s still too much alcohol coming through.
We went to to Dutch Delight in Birkenhead last night for the first time and whilst it was ok, it didn’t quite live up to the great place we had heard it was.
The decor is a bit tired, but they have decorated it well with a Dutch theme.
It was our waitress' first night last night and it was quite evident that she had been poorly trained and no idea what was on the menu. When she asked if we would like any drinks and I asked what they had, since we hadn’t had a chance to look at the menu at that point, her response was Ummmm. Other than this, the food did all arrive in a timely manner and the staff were all very courteous.
We started with the mixed starter platter to share, and whilst the items did taste ok, it was disappointing to find all of the items were deep fried; this was not clear from the menu.
For our mains we had a goulash pancake and a seafood pancake. The goulash was good, but the seafood was quite obviously predominantly frozen seafood and tasted like it. The pancake itself was excellent.
We will keep Dutch Delight in mind for if we want to have a dessert, but for dinner we will probably give it a miss.
Sunday, 6 September 2009
Crossroads is a vineyard from the Hawkes Bay that used to rate as one of my top picks of vineyards, however I had not had their wine for many years. To remedy that I decided to open up Crossroads Hawkes Bay Destination Series Chardonnay 2005 this evening, and found it to be okay (after a couple of glasses); in fact I did not particularly enjoy it at all to start with, but once it had aired for a while I found it significantly more pleasurable. Jane, on the other hand, thought it was great and delicious from her first mouthful (which is bizarre for Jane since she is often not particularly fond of Chardonnays).
It had a light golden hue, and was not as dark as I expected for a 2005. Initially I was getting French oak on the nose with toasty characteristics, but found that this became a lot mellower over time. To taste I found it to be a bit too acidic and bitter with a light buttery flavour at first, although not heavy with the strong French oak tendencies that can dominate some Chardonnays. It was a very full bodied wine and had a nice long tail. The taste got significantly better once it had opened up a bit and by about halfway through the bottle I was actually enjoying it significantly more. I do wonder whether I would have preferred this wine though if I was drinking it a couple of years ago.
Friday, 4 September 2009
The last time we had been here we weren't overly impressed, however this time it was quite a different experience. The restaurant is still a bit sparse in terms of decor however there were a reasonable number of people dining this evening.
The menu was sufficiently large and had a variety of different Thai dishes. We started with the Tom Yum Goong and this was nicely spiced and enjoyable, and followed this with:
- Gang Pep Pip Yang (Duck with Red Curry, Bamboo Shoots and Peas),
- Nua Wine Dang (Red-wine Marinated beef in a sweet and sour sauce), and
- Pad Pak (Mixed Vegetables in Oyster sauce).
All the dishes were really good, and as bizarre as the beef sounds we would order it again. The meals all arrived in a timely manner and the staff were attentive and courteous.