Matches for Annabel May 23 2021 Canvas


Wild pork( or duck) rillettes

Misty Cove Wines ‘Waihopai’ Limited Release Marlborough White Blend 2020 ($29)

Well, I’ll be hogtied and hornswoggled and all sorts of other ‘h’ words — this blend of gewürztraminer, grüner veltliner, and riesling is what I’ve been searching for ALL year! This sort of magical mélange is my kind of wine. Lifted florals, ginger, spice, and honeysuckle-heavy aromatics meet layers of lychee, soft citrus, and peach, while a long, sexy, slightly prickly finish makes this pretty much the perfect thing to sling back over spoonfuls of pork or duck rillettes.

Seared venison with parsnips and watercress herb salad

Squawking Magpie First Flight Hawke’s Bay Syrah 2019 ($19)

If this wine could possibly cram more violets into its scent, then I’m off down to the local garden centre to eat a punnet of potted colour. From the Gimblett Gravels sub-region (the most famous red wine district in the nation) comes a wine the colour of Indian ruby (the coolest of all the rubies) which shows seductively soft spices, powdery tannins, pepper, plum, and a tonne of flavour. First Flight is a new style for the folk at Squazza Mazza, and it’s superb with seared venison and peppery watercress salad.

Duck with persimmons and chilli

FROMM Churton Vineyard Marlborough Pinot Noir 2018 ($55)

Just five barrels were made of this wine from one of the Waihopai Valley’s most revered organic, biodynamic growers. The team at Fromm (I opted against saying ‘from Fromm’ because I’m a serious writer ok) were able to secure a parcel of pinot from Sam Weaver’s Churton vineyard and with their Frommy flair, they’ve crafted a finely-tuned pinot noir bursting with rosehip tea and truffle, soft raspberry, redcurrant and tickly, prickly tannins preceding a deep undercurrent of earthiness. It’s also dangerously delicious with duck.

Drinks list review – Daphnes


As far as drinks go, daphnes (all lower case, no apostrophe) is Ponsonby Road spendy, but at least most of the wines are available by the glass. Except the ones you really want. When I think about indulging in a modern Greek menu heaving with Jerusalem artichoke dip, spinachy spanakopita, fried cheese, terakihi lakerda, anchovies, tomatos, kalamari, mackerel, kahawai, octopus and chicken – all I hanker for is a glass or six of something crisp, citrussy, white and preferably from Greece. Because Greece makes great wine. Where was the Malagouzia, the Moschofilero, the blends of Athiri and Rhoditis? There was only one actual Greek white wine on the list, an amazing Assyrtiko from Sigalas Santorini, but only available by the bottle and for $100. Who wants to drop a hundred pings on a wine you’ve never sampled before? I’d happily pay $20 for a glass just to experience it, maybe others might too?

The reds list does have one Greek red by the glass, an Agiortiko from Nemea at a very reasonable $13, but that’s it. Yet this is a menu featuring famously classic Greek lamb, pork knuckle and souvlaki’s made from things like wood mushrooms, lamb and ox tongue. Dishes that scream out for Mavrotragano, Mavro Kalavitrino, or Xinomavro.

Despite lacking Greekness, the wine list has some superb sips from Italy, Spain, France, Hungary and from right here at home, covering a smorgasbord of styles, so you won’t lack for vermentino, xarel lo, pinot noir, merlot, grenache, rosé, arneis, sauvignon blanc, pinot gris, tempranillo, sangiovese, riesling, cabernet, chardonnay and craft beers from Hallertau, Garage Project, Urbanaut, Brothers and cider from Morningcider.

Fans of sugar will be happy post-main because the Mavrodafni [sic] Reserve dessert wine at $15 a glass, is criminally good with the custardy, gorgeous Galaktoboureko.

It sucks to be a stickler for spelling, but writing a drinks list is hardly War & Peace. You can and should take the time to get the names of your suppliers right. It’s ‘Urbanaut’ not Urbanault and ‘#5 Pilsner’ not pilsnah and ‘Mavrodaphne Reserve’ not Mavrodafni (I mean half of the word Is. Your. Actual. Name.)

If you’re interested in sampling Greek wines, beers and other beverages visit