Sunday, May 15, 2016

Forage North Canterbury 2016

Local foraging event celebrates diversity of wild-foods (and the opportunity to prepare a wide range of seafoods). Peter Langlands 1 February 2016 The second North Canterbury Forage event was held on the 30th of January 2016 . The event initiated and organised by Angela Clifford has been an outstanding success. Angela represents a range of vineyards (Tongue in Groove wines) in the Waipara Region, and the event was to profile the regions high quality wines alongside the range of foraging ingredients available within a stone’s throw of the vineyard. Eight teams of people headed out from the iconic Pegasus Bay Vineyard forage, fish and hunt a wide range of foods for a range of some of New Zealand’s top chefs to prepare in innovative and exciting ways. Yet while a wide range of seafood was gathered it was a 150 kilogram wild boar that stole the show, shot by local vineyard manager Nick Gill. Seafood featured well in the day’s bounty with a wide range of seaweeds, shellfish and fin fish collected in addition to some freshwater eels. The event showed just what a large variety of food can be gathered in a small area. The event helped to profile the diversity of fish species that can be used outside of the traditionally known species. Scarlett wrasse and sea perch were served up with steamed seaweed and seaweed butter to create an impressive on the table dish for some international visitors. An octopus even made it onto the table. Even small yellow eyed mullet caught by using a bait net were transformed into tasty boquerones, a Spanish perpetration which involves marinating the mullet and serving them as a snack before the main meal. Increasingly there is more awareness about matching vines with seafood and freshwater fish. White wines overall are the best for seafood matches , with aromatic wines like Gew├╝rztraminer going well with strongly flavoured oily fish. A crisp and light Riesling , chilled is also a compliment to many types of seafood. Some of the stronger flavour fish species like kahawai can be matched with a Pinot noir. The Waipara Region is very well known now with wines winning international awards. Many international wine writers attended the event, along with some of the country’s top chefs - with the aim of making the Waipara Region a food and wine tourist destination. Overall many chefs and vineyards feel that we need to make our country more of food and wine, destination, to rival adventure tourism. The event is planned to take place again in 2017 Link to North Canterbury Forage 2015 – Photograph – 1-Small yellow eyed mullet are prepared to make boquerones.

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