Sapporo, Riesling and Sashimi

Kris: A sunny afternoon, some fresh local seafood and a couple of friends dropping by? Time for some riesling and perhaps a beer or two. I was keen to make some sushi and discovered a 6 pack of Sapporo at our local bottle shop that, under further investigation on the packaging, was brewed in Adelaide, South Australia. I have tried the Japanese version, the Canadian version in the 500ml can, so how would the Australian interpretation taste?
Kris: I have mixed emotions about contract brewing classic beer styles in other countries. It seems common place these days. Guiness brewed in Melbourne. Peroni in Newcastle. Fosters is another prime example. In England it is advertised as Australia’s favourite beer? To be honest, I can’t remember the last time I spotted it in a bar or bottle shop. Apparently the majority of Fosters is brewed in France and sold in England? I guess thats why it is exciting to travel and to sample beers that are brewed  in their homeland. The Australian version of Sapporo was fine. A crisp, easy drinking lager and a good match for fresh shucked oysters and sashimi. I have said it time and time again, I love Riesling! I think it is the hop driven, beer lovers wine. My favourite interpretation of this varietal is aromatic with a distinctive lemon/lime character. Jim Barry 2010 Watervale Riesling is a classic, affordable version of this style. It is also a great match for oysters and tuna sashimi.
Kris: As mentioned previously, I am still learning the fine art of sashimi/sushi. It is one of my favourite ways of eating fresh seafood. I have the upmost respect for sushi chefs; it is truly an art in itself.
Caroline : I love the Jim Barry 2010 Watervale Riesling; I am also a huge fan of Alsace Riesling and the Domaine Zind Humbrecht was a great match for the oysters and sashimi. It had a bit more sweetness than the first wine we tried  and finished with the lemon/lime character that Kris and I both love in Riesling. A perfect spring/summer dinner!



Freshly Picked!

Caroline: Something about fruit you pick yourself makes it taste better! Don’t you think? I love this time of the year when it seems like everything in the garden shoots up and is ready to eat all at once!

Kris: We have a small, productive vege patch, but on our Tuesday off this week it was a treat to forage and cook out of our friends Matt and Bridget’s garden. There is nothing more rewarding than cooking with the freshest ingredients and it’s always great to enjoy some delicious food matched with some fantastic beer and wine. These are just two recipes (below)we prepared and enjoyed for dinner.
Caroline: While Bridget and I picked strawberries and raspberries, the boys dug up some potatoes, baby asparagus, fresh garlic, and zucchini flowers…

Stuffed Zucchini Flowers

(Serves 4)

4 zucchini flowers

100g goats chevre

1 piece preserved lemon ( finely diced)

1/2 tsp minced fresh garlic

1 Tbs chopped dill

salt and pepper

 olive oil


 Mix the goats cheese, preserved lemon, garlic and dill in a bowl

Season with salt and pepper

Preferably leave the mixture over night

Stuff the zucchini flowers with the mixture

Coat the flowers in olive oil and fry on a BBQ for 2 minutes on each side

Kris : I love matching food with beer, but as I have said before, I do enjoy wine also and I think Riesling is my favourite varietal, especially if they are dry, citrusy and mineral-y. The 2009 Trimbach was a great match for the zucchini flowers and a classic example of Alsace Riesling.

Caroline: The zucchini flowers were awesome. The flower itself is so soft and delicate and the softness of the goats cheese made it so beautiful to eat. The stuffing was zippy and salty, a perfect appetizer..

Caroline: I love dinner parties with these two, there is never a shortage of amazing drinks to choose from! We sipped on G&T’s while we prepared the rest of dinner and had some reds on hand to match with our dishes.

BBQ Quail with Fresh Garden Asian Salad

(Serves 4)

4 Quails

3 Tbs Oyster Sauce 

1 Tbs soy sauce

2 Tbs good quality honey

1/2 tsp sesame oil

1/2 red chilli (finely diced)

4-5 slices fresh ginger

2 cloves garlic

2-3 star anise

1/2 tsp ground coriander


Combine the oyster sauce, soy sauce, ginger, chilli,sesame oil,honey, garlic and spices in a bowl and stir until combined

Place the quails breast side down on a clean chopping board and flatten with the palm of your hand

Place the quails in the marinade and rub into the skin of the quails

Leave the bowl (covered) in the fridge overnight

Heat a BBQ and grill the quail for 6-7 minutes per side

Baste the quail with the extra marinade during cooking

Allow the quail to rest for 5 minutes before serving

I also made a simple, fresh salad straight from the garden to serve with the quails. I harvested mesculin, mint, basil, coriander flowers and radish and made a dressing with sesame oil and lemon juice.

Kris:I thought we would try Meantime Brewery’s Union Vienna Amber lager and Innis and Gunn’s Rum Barrel Aged Scottish Ale with the dish. The Union is a 4.9% Amber Lager, which was an ideal match with the quail. The sweet malt complimented the sweetness of the BBQ Quail and it’s clean, crisp finish cut through the richness of the marinade. The Rum Barrel Aged Ale was also an ideal beer to compliment the sweetness of the quail. If you are wanting to drink wine, a cool climate Shiraz or medium bodied Pinot Noir would work well.Thanks to Matt and Bridget for letting us forage in their garden. It is one of our favourite ways of cooking.

Caroline: These quails were delicious, they were so fat! Plenty to munch on. Cooking them on the BBQ added this great smokiness and char-y flavor to the skin making it crunchy and sweet! These two beers were a great match as well, they were really malty so they complimented the sweetness of the bird really well. It was a perfect match.

What a fun night! Bridget made lemon curd tarts with meringue and passionfruit and an awesome cocktail to match…I’ll see if i can’t nab her recipes to share!