Wellington on a Plate – ATA Rangi Winemaker’s Dinner

I am a very lucky girl. On Thursday I had the most amazing night at the Ata Rangi Winemaker’s Dinner event which was part of Wellington on a Plate.  Note: I apologise for the sub-par photos I took from my iPhone – one day I will get a good camera!

It was 5:41pm on Thursday Night. I had just finished a detox (The Saturday before I was at a Birthday Party filled with Chocolate Cake, Pizza and Wine and I couldn’t have anything – it was torture!).  I was just about to start making my dinner when I got an AMAZING tweet:

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I was over the moon. Within an hour my mother and I were at the Museum Hotel where the Hippopotamus Restaurant is. Now I have heard a lot about Hippopotamus – it is one of the top restaurants in Wellington. The restaurant is beautiful!  C’est magnifique! Also, as a bonus it is a French restaurant and I love anything French.

On arrival, we had the 2014 Ata Rangi Sauvignon Blanc this was my mothers favourite wine of the night she loves a good dry Sauvignon.

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After enjoying the beautiful view of the harbor we were seated. They have a few large tables so you sat next to different people. We had a lovely couple across from us, they informed us this was the best event of Wellington on a Plate!

The first course was Le Sashimi de saumon “a ma facon” served with 2010 Ata Rangi Craighall Riesling

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I love Salmon – so this dish was perfection although I could of done with Wasabi. The Riesling was stunning. In my opinion this was the best food and wine match of the night (although they were all wonderful).

The second course was  Poitrine de porc confite, tortellini a la langouste, Bouillabaisse et puree de mais served with a 2011 Ata Rangi Lismore Pinot Gris 

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The pork belly was amazing and mixed with the sweet corn puree was heaven. I wasn’t a huge fan of the Cray Fish so my other ate mine (she adored it!) The Pinot Gris was okay, it was quite dry in my opinion but it was very popular amount others on the table.

Now to my favorite wine of the night I could of drunken the whole bottle 

The third course was Filet de dorade poele, coques de Cloudy Bay, langoustines sautees, perles de safran et sauce Homardine served with 2008 Ata Rangi Craighall Chardonnay 

I didn’t get a photo of this course because I was distracted by how fucken divine the Chardonnay was. It was probably the best wine I have ever had. Sadly, I was left heartbroken when we discovered the 2008 Ata Rangi Craighall Chardonnay was no longer available. The Snapper was brilliant, everything in that dish worked well. 10/10 – Best course of the night.

Next was the Confit de cuisse de canard, magret pele, pomme a la tomme, saute de petales de choux de Bruxelles creme de haricot blanc et served with 2009 Ata Rangi Pinot Noir

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I love a good Pinot Noir – did not disappoint. The Wine and the Duck were marvelous together. My only complaint would be the disappointment over having one Brussel Sprout. As they are my favourite food I was sad. This was probably the best meal of the night.

Fifth Course was a Ossau-Iraty, petite poire pochee au vin rouge, compote de poire epicee et gougere served with 2010 Ata Rangi Syrah

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So funny thing about this meal, my mother and I both thought the long white item was the poached pear – then I bit into it and figured out it was Cheese! My mother later commented “Hm. This pear tastes like cheese” … I just had to laugh and explain that it tastes like cheese because it was cheese. Everything on the plate went so well together – I am envious of chefs who can create dishes that work!

Sixith and final course was Jardin d’Argumes served with the Ata Rangi Kahu Late Harvest Riesling 

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A perfect wine and dessert to end the night. I hardly ever eat dessert, and before Thursday I hadn’t had sugar in a long time but “Candied citrus, white chocolate mousse, matcha genoise, hibicus jelly, chocolate crumble and gin parfait” Perfection. Dessert wines are often good, the Riesling was the perfect match.

I highly highly recommend anyone who hasn’t been to Hippopotamus Restaurant to go. Their chefs are brilliant and the waiters are excellent. It was an enjoyable evening from start to finish. Also check out Ata Rangi’s wines – http://www.atarangi.co.nz/, they are definitely in my top ten now.

And although Friday was a pretty painful day at work –  I am so grateful for Wellington on a Plate for choosing me as their winner! I am glad I got to take my mother out for an amazing time.

Till next time xx

Shauna

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