Kangarillo Road Winemaker's Lunch-1

It’s always a treat to learn of a new winemaker on the scene, and this week at Yaletown’s Brix Restaurant, media were invited to sample some of the restaurant’s dishes while learning about new Australian winery Kangarilla Road.

Kangarillo Road Winemaker Kevin O'Brien
[Kangarillo Road Winemaker Kevin O’Brien]

Kangarilla Road is named after the main road that runs past the vineyard towards the small village of Kangarilla and is derived from the Australian Aboriginal words to describe ‘abundance of local resources’. Kevin and Helen O’Brien began the winery in 1997, using biodynamic and organic methods to produce wine in a state of the art winemaking facility.

Though I didn’t have the chance to sample all of the wines with lunch (I needed to leave early for another engagement), my favourite white was the 2012 The Veil, produced using a similar process to sherry. It has a pungent nose and and amazing finish. The Veil is made from Savagnin Blanc grapes traditionally grown in the Jura region of France (known to the French as vin jaune).

This wine with its sherry-like complexity married very well with Roast Pemberton Farms camembert, Okanagan pear, and candied pecan atop house made crisps. The caraway seeds in the crisps gave a fine kick to the wine as well.

Peppercorn crusted brome lake duck breast, fresh fig & fried goat's cheese salad
[Peppercorn crusted Brome Lake duck breast, fresh fig and fried goat’s cheese salad]

Our first course was peppercorn-crusted Brome Lake duck breast served with fresh fig and fried goat’s cheese salad. It was paired with both Kangarilla’s McLaren Vale Cabernet and Shiraz Viognier.

The McLaren Vale Cabernet is sourced from four vineyards in the northern part of the foothills, allowing the grapes to ripen later than many of Australia’s sub-regions. A cooler climate dark fruit wine with velvety tannins is the result. I liked the bold cherry playing with the black pepper, working in tandem with the duck breast’s black peppercorn seasoning.

Kangarillo Road Winemaker's Lunch-4

The Shiraz Viognier is aged for 14 months in new French oak Barriques. I tasted sweet flowers and black currant as this wine’s predominant flavours. It also has a nice texture and worked as an excellent pairing with the fried goat’s cheese on our plates.

Some of Kangarilla Road’s wines also include the 2010 Terzetto, Devil’s Whiskers 2010 Shiraz, Scare Earth Project 2010 Shiraz, and Q 2009 Shiraz. For more information on Kangarilla Road, visit their website. The wines are currently available at BC liquor stores. Many thanks to Brix Restaurant for preparing a delightful lunch menu to complement these wines.

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