Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Tooting My Own Trumpet

It's a peculiarly Nu Zild affliction that crowing about achievement is tantamount to throwing up on someone's shoe.

But I'm obviously in the final throes of pregnancy hormones and as such seem to be glowing in all the right places.

Not that I've actually won anything, yet, and I may not. But my winelist has been nominated for "Outstanding Winelist' at this year's Lewisham Awards (a sort of Oscars for the Auckland hospitality industry) and I'm pleased and proud and glowing that the list I've nutured has a little recognition.

Having said that. It's still not the list I'd love it to be. I've woken up to far too much economic reality over the past year and the romance of writing a crafted, creative list gets dulled by figures and margins.

Still, here it is for scrutiny.

I'm a bit terrified of this bit but here goes........

Wine list

Sunday, April 5, 2009

A wine free life as I write the new list

You'd be forgiven for thinking that I'd given up even tasting wine as my posts slow to a trickle and the bump grows bigger.

In truth I'm tasting quite a bit as the pressure mounts to leave my restaurant in a 'good place' wine-wise whilst I swan off on Maternity leave. I've timed it quite well in the Nu Zillund wine calendar all things considered as this is about the time most Sommelier turn their attention to winter lists anyway.

I'm focusing on building the Pinot Noir and Syrah sections as many Pinots are rolling vintage about now plus enthusiasm for Syrah continues to build locally with many NZ Syrah helpfully keeping step with increasing quality. Also Syrah, as a rule, offers more value for money than Pinot. And this seems topical and necessary.

Just as the economy continues to dominate in the media it remains top of mind for me also. It seems so pertinent to maintain a list of wines that people can afford. To source wines that over-deliver at their price point so that a carefully chosen indulgence feels worth it to my guests. And to have all staff able and confident with gentle encouragement towards the lesser known but highly tasty drops. Actually, this is important all of the time, but doubly so if it starts looking like wine is at risk of being too much of a luxury for most.