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Al Brown And Mount Edward Food & Wine Weekend
– Cuisine

October 2010, and the 5th year Al Brown and Duncan Forsyth have combined their talents at Poronui for a Food and Wine Weekend. Over the years Al and Duncan and their wives Liz and Helen have become part of the Poronui family.

The menu for the Gala dinner epitomised Al’s simplistic approach to cooking with his passion and respect for local produce and always that element of surprise. I couldn’t think of a better match than the Mount Edward wines. Duncan’s in-depth understanding of soil types combine with his organic methods to produce wonderful Pinot Noir, Riesling, Pinot Gris and Pinot Blanc.

The Artichoke Soup with Shiitake and Truffle, matched with the Pinot Blanc 2009, and served outside around the roaring fire at the Cabana set the scene for the evening. Keep an eye out for Duncan’s Pinot Blanc, its hard to find but well worth the search.

The combination of texture and taste of the Trevally Carpaccio with Fresh Wasabi Custard and the Drumlin Riesling 2009 generated much discussion and many “oohs” and “aahs”.


Trevally Carpaccio by Al Brown at Poronui, 2010

The Crab Cakes with Gribiche proved a crowd favourite matched with the Pinot Gris 2008.

My personal favourite was the Roasted Pork Hock with Cauliflower and Apple Salsa Verde. The hock – juicy and succulent and topped with the crunch of the crackling was for many a new gastronomic experience. Al may well be responsible for pork hock going up in price!


Roasted Pork Hock by Al Brown, Poronui 2010

For many of the guests it was the Duck Confit with Lentils and Collard Greens that stole the show. Both the Morrison Vineyard Pinot Noir 2008 & 2009 truly complimented this dish, although everyone had their favourite vintage.


Duck Confit with Lentils, Al Brown, Poronui 2010

Dessert was a Lemon Panna Cotta – clean and creamy to finish.

Saturday’s warm, sunny weather was a real bonus. While relaxing was a distinct possibility most were drawn to the outdoors. Some chose to explore the property on foot, mountain bikes and horse back. Others took to the rivers to fish, while still more rose to the challenge of the sporting clays, archery and air rifle courses. Some even managed to make time for a massage and facial during the day. The Safari Camp as always proved a popular lunch spot. It was a shorts and tee shirts for picnic lunch.

The opportunity for sika deer stalking was taken early Sunday morning. Finally, following a leisurely breakfast and much discussion on recipes and wines guests began to make their way home, many planning their return trip!

Al has become a true friend of Poronui, not only for the Food and Wine Weekends but also our the Ready for the Wild Challenges. He and Duncan are already confirmed for November 2011 and keep up with other Al Brown events at Poronui by finding us on Facebook, or checking our blog regularly.



Al Brown and Duncan Forsyth Food and Wine Weekend Menu
Mount Edward Pinot Blanc 2009

Artichoke Soup with Shiitake and Truffle

Mount Edward Drumlin Riesling 2009
Trevally Carpaccio with Fresh Wasabi Custard

Mount Edward Pinot Gris 2008
Crab Cake with Gribiche

Mount Edward Pinot Noir 2008
Roasted Pork Hock with Cauliflower and Apple Salsa Verde

Mount Edward Morrison Vineyard 2008 & 2009
Duck Confit with Lentils and Collard Greens

Lemon Panna Cotta with Passionfruit

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