Winery platters to enjoy over Summer
New Zealand is known the world over as a great wine producer, and there’s nothing like pairing our wines with a platter or cheeseboard to complement those exquisite varietals. We’ve selected a smattering of vineyards from around the country, known for their stunning locations and top class wines, whose sumptuous platters match the fine quality wine they offer. We suggest you visit over Summer.
Brick Bay Matakana
Nestled amongst native pohutukawas, encompassing stunning views of Snells beach and Kawau Island with the tranquillity of birdsong sweet to the ear is Brick Bay vineyard. Known for handcrafted Pinot Gris, Bordeaux style red, Rosé, and premium red, Brick Bay is always worth a short trip north of Auckland.
Their uniquely-styled The Glass House Kitchen features a range of sumptuous local fare to savour and overlooks a waterlily-fringed lake. The perfect setting to order the wine of your choice whilst sampling a cheeseboard featuring Mahoe Aged Edam, Kapiti Aorangi Brie, Kapiti Kahurangi Blue, fig conserve, merlot jelly, dried fruit and nut slice, crackers and bread. This tantalising cheese board offers a range that rewards the palette and will confirm just why this vineyard is worth venturing to.
Equally resplendent is the Glass House Platter, available for two to three people to share. The selection includes Mahoe Gouda and Whangaripo Buffalo Grado, roasted pumpkin, cauliflower and bulgur wheat salad, beetroot, apple and walnuts, roasted garlic hummus, smoked salmon rillette, deli meats, chicken liver parfait and artisan breads. If you’re looking for a platter that defines quintessential balance of flavours and textures this is it.
Marsden Estate Winery
Named after pioneering missionary to New Zealand, Samuel Marsden, Marsden Estate Winery is tucked away in the Bay of Islands – KeriKeri. The setting offers the simplistic beauty of lake frontage and lush gardens, where an extensive range of wine – Pinot Gris, Chardonnay, Muscat and Merlot to name a few can be sampled. Food to match is served at their courtyard restaurant in the heart of the vineyard. Marsden Estate is renowned for the quality of its original cuisine and flavours and there is an extensive menu that showcases that.
For those who wish to try a cheese board, theirs features a trio of cheeses, local Ludbrook house quince paste, homemade tomato, capsicum and fig chutney and falwasser crackers. The ideal partner for a warm Summer day.
Or if you’re looking for a little more on the plate order the antipasto platter (for two) filled with a selection of olives, cheeses, salami, salmon, dolmas, marinated veges, homemade dips and spreads and plenty of fresh ciabatta and German Rye bread. Vegetarian and gluten gree options are available.
Mt Difficulty Estate embraces the essence of Central Otago, situated deep in the famous sub-region of Bannockburn. Practicing the philosophy of ethical viticulture and minimal intervention, Mt Difficulty wine speaks for itself, producing Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Gris of the finest quality.
With an open kitchen (so you get an insight into what’s coming) just sit back and relax on the terrace and savour the breath-taking mountainous backdrop of Central Otago. All while enjoying a large menu selection sourced from the freshest produce that has something to cater to all tastes. This is a destination restaurant of choice and is definitely on the map for many international travellers and Kiwis alike.
For ardent fans of a quality cheese board Mt Difficulty’s will not disappoint. You’ll get a chef’s selection of three cheeses, hazelnut dukkah with fresh pear, red and green grapes, quince paste, crackers and toasted artisan breads. The Mt Difficulty platter on offer is other-worldly, featuring antipasti – sundried tomatoes, marinated mixed olives, sweet white garlic, cornichons, rojo chorizo and black forest ham, manuka smoked green shell mussel pate, Barber’s Vintage Reserve Cheddar, Le Maubert French Brie, Fig and Mt Difficulty Pinot Noir chutney, marinated squid with beetroot and rocket salad, Stewart Island sea run salmon rillettes, lime seasoned toasted almonds, toasted ciabatta and Lebanese flat bread.
Try this and you’ll know you’ve just experienced something as magical as the place you’re eating it.
Around 45 minutes shy of Auckland by ferry you’ll discover the paradise of Waiheke Island. One of its most notable inhabitants is the Mudbrick Vineyard and Restaurant. Born from over 20 years of hard work and always operating on the philosophy ‘from the customer’s point of view’ Mudbrick has thrived with lush vines producing Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Malbec, Tempranillo, Chardonnay and Viognier, among others.
The cuisine component of Mudbrick was always as equally important as the wine varietals and designed to offer pairings that hero the finest ingredients. You can taste the passion in the food that Mudbrick Vineyard and Restaurant creates with a menu that makes great use of fresh local seafood and produce. Their menu is so packed with an amazing use of flavours it’s hard to actually make a decision on any one dish.
The Mudbrick Cheese Selection is a highlight, with home-made chutney, honey, lavosh and crackers matched with a selection of four cheeses, including varieties from a diverse range of fromagiers in France.
If you’d like to indulge in a little temptation then a Vineyard Platter to share is an experience you should have. Decadence can only describe how you’ll feel enjoying prosciutto, salami, vitello tonnato, prawns, ceviche, lemon pepper squid, roasted marinated vegetables, poppy seed and cumin cheese twists, garden salad with pumpkin seed and balsamic dressing, home-made bread and cream cheese dip.
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Entertaining friends and family will be high on the agenda during these hot Summer months.