Fabulous Ladies and Yealands Wine: a Perfect Match


Written by Lil Williams

Are you a lady who likes wine? How big of a wine snob are you? Do you think you could ace a quiz to win some fabulous wine freebies? The Fabulous Ladies’ Wine Society is a great way to connect with other women over a shared passion.

At Mardo’s last week, The World Loves Melbourne joined a group of ladies in tasting beautiful New Zealand Yealands wine over a five course meal with the Chief Winemaker, Tamra Kelly-Washington, on hand to explain the wines as we went. What an opportunity!

As the lounge area of Mardo’s filled with the happy sounds of ladies catching up as well as meeting for the first time, we mingled over several h'ordeuvres that were skilfully matched with a Yealands Estate Single Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc. Through the combined expertise of winemaker Tamra and Mardo’s executive chef, Sebastian Simon, each of the five following courses were complemented well by the choice of Yealands wine.

The twice cooked pork belly, poached apple and cider veluté was matched with both Yealands Estate Single Vineyard Pinot Gris and Yealands Estate Single Vineyard P.G.R. (Pinot Gris, Gewürztraminer, Riesling). With percentages around 13, both had weighty fruit flavours, emphasising pear, and a touch of ginger.

Hosted by Jane Thomson, founding lady and managing editor of Fabulous Ladies, the event was all class, making each lady feel like an important guest. A wine quiz was a fun way to break up the evening (with almost as many giveaways as there was guests) and having Tamra speak so eloquently about the wines almost gave the feel of an exclusive masterclass.

This wild snapper fillet, pan seared, with shaved fennel, orange segments and wasabi mayonnaise was matched with Yealands Estate Single Block SI Sauvignon Blanc from Awatere Valley and Crossroads Milestone Series Chardonnay from Hawke’s Bay.

Having the wine and food skilfully matched, the whole experience is so well blended that the food never seems too sweet for the wine.

To match this beautiful Yealands Estate Single Vineyard Pinot Noir and Crossroads Milestone Series Syrah was a red wine lamb ragu and house-made gnocchi toasted in burnt butter, pecorino, and fried sage.

This was a dish to fight over and the smoky aromas mixed with notes of dark cherry made the wine a perfect match. Delicious gnocchi is the perfect thing to chow down on in the middle of winter and we made the most of it.

Jane was a truly fabulous host, ensuring the night flowed seamlessly and setting the fun, friendly tone for the night. While she is the current ‘Digital Wine Commuicator of the Year 2013’ and also writes about wine for the Australian Good Food Guide and, she is incredibly humble and approachable—and most importantly passionate about wine! Travelling around Australia, she hosts Fabulous Ladies’ Wine Soirees, creating a lively inclusive wine community for women.

Wine and cheese: what a winning combination. This cheese and fruit platter with a pleasing combination of textures cleansed our palates and led into dessert.

For the sweet tooths among us, this dessert wine, Yealands Estate Single Vineyard Noble Sauvignon Blanc, is absolute perfection. Tamra explained how the grapes are left on the vine until they are quite shrivelled, allowing the sugar proteins to develop, so the sweetness is all natural (no need to feel guilty about it!). The sauv blanc complemented the passionfruit panacotta ‘one sip, one bite’ style and I started looking around for who else’s I could finish off…

For a fun night out with other wine lovers, the Fabulous Ladies Wine Society is worth joining—especially with all those give-aways—because there’s nothing like feeling part of a community who love the same thing that you do.

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