5 Fabulous Wooded Chardonnays

29 November 2013 • General
Originally posted on Food24.com by Cathy Marson.

Change up the Sauvignon sipping with some Chardonnay this summer. 

Are you an ABCD-er? Anything But Chardonnay Darling? You wouldn’t be alone – there are plenty of wine drinkers who get to Sauvignon Blanc and never make it any further in fear of the dreaded oak. 

Because a lot of the time, it isn’t the actually Chardonnay which offends, it’s the oak flavours of spice, vanilla, toast and butter which people don’t like. Why don’t they like them, because they sound delicious and attractive enough? 

I think it’s because it is so easy to overdo them, to add in so many oaky flavours that you mask the fruit completely instead of simply supporting and enhancing it to make a balanced, more complex wine. 

Wooded wines tend to cost more than unwooded ones as well (A new barrel generally costs around R9,000 to buy)... read more »

Brie, Roquefort and Wild Mushroom Fondue Recipe

23 December 2012 • Awards

Place flour in large bowl. Cut rind from Brie; discard rind. Cut Brie into cubes; drop into flour. Toss to coat; separate cheese cubes. Crumble Roquefort into same bowl; toss to coat. Place wine in heavy medium saucepan and bring to simmer over medium heat. Add cheese by handfuls, stirring until melted after each addition. Continue stirring until smooth.


Stir mushroom mixture into fondue. Season with generous amount of pepper. Transfer to fondue pot. Set pot over candle or canned heat burner. Serve with bread and vegetables.

Sea Bass Roasted in Red Wine Sauce

Sea Bass Roasted in Red Wine Sauce
23 December 2012 • Awards

5 tablespoons olive oil
6 shallots, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 bay leaf
1 tablespoon chopped fresh marjoram
1 fresh rosemary sprig
2 cups dry red wine
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 sea bass, about 2 pounds each, cleaned
salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 onion, sliced into thin rings
2 celery stalks, cut into 1/2-inch chunks
3 tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and chopped


There is a splendid restaurant-wine bar in Verona called Antica Bottega del Vino (the Old Wine Shop). It is indeed very old, a cavernous room decorated with large wall frescoes, and it's always bustling, with waiters darting back and forth, and a solid crowd at the small bar at the front. One dish that's often on the menu is Branzino in red wine, deliciously irresistible.

In a heavy-bottomed saucepan, heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil over medium heat. Add the shallots and cook until soft - about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, bay... read more »

Salmon and leek quiche

23 December 2012 • Awards

1 cup (120 g) cake flour
¼ cup parmesan cheese
½ t (2,5 ml) salt
4 T (60 g) butter, fridge temperature
1 egg yolk
2 T (30 ml) cold water

4 leeks, well washed and finely sliced
1 T (15 ml) oil
1 T (15 ml) butter
400g left over cooked salmon or tinned salmon, drained, skin and hard bones removed & flaked.
2 eggs
1 cup (250 ml) créme fraiche
¼ cup (60 ml) cream
Salt & pepper to taste


Sift the flour and salt twice and cut or rub in the butter to form coarse crumbs. Mix the egg yolk with cold water and brandy and add to the flour. Cut the liquid in with a small knife to form a lumpy mixture. Use your hands to gather and knead the mixture together until it forms a ball. Don't add more water, simply keep working the dough lightly.
Wrap the dough in cling... read more »

Grilled salmon fillet with a Chardonnay sauce

23 December 2012 • Awards
Served with spinach mash and tomato sambal salad.


1 Salmon fillet (about 1.5 kg)
Maldon Salt and freshly ground pepper

6 potatoes peeled and cubed
200 g spinach, shreded
50 ml milk
pinch of nutmeg, salt and pepper
100 g butter

150 ml Chardonnay (I used The Eleanor Chardonnay)
150 ml Chicken stock
2 Shallots finely chopped
3 tablespoons of fresh dill, chopped
lemon juice to taste
50 g butter

100 g cherry tomatoes halved
1 green chilli finely chopped
3 tablespoons coriander/dania chopped
1 red onion, chopped
vinegar and sugar to taste (for dressing)
mix of lettuce leaves (baby salad, rocket, basil)


Preheat the oven to 200 degrees celcius. Sprinkle the fillet with the salt and pepper.
Bake for around 20 minutes for medium rare and 25 minutes for cooked. Rest for 15 minutes.

Boil potatoes in salted water. Wilt spinach in milk and add salt, pepper and a pinch of nutmeg. (This takes only a few minutes) Drain milk from... read more »
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