Meet the Paso Wine Man

Apparently the McLaren Vale region was just a little bit snitty about all publicity the Barossa has recently received since the launch of the recent moody TV ad "Be Consumed" with the Nick Cave soundtrack.

Perhaps McV could adopt the philosophy "talent is borrowed, genius is stolen" (see here) and follow in the footsteps of the Paso Robles wine region in California and create the Vale Male.  

This is the Paso Wine Man, actor and local resident Casey Riggs, who features in a series of clever (and informative) videos about the Paso region and its wine varieties.  Remember the award-wining Old Spice ad? It's got that kind of flavour. Click on Casey's picture to view one of the videos:

I thank my uncle David Lloyd, owner and wine-maker of Eldridge Estate of Red Hill (Mornington Peninsula) for introducing me to the Paso Wine Man. As a Pinot Noir obssessive, David, I suspect, found the Paso Wine Man because of this Pinot vid. He agrees Paso Man rocks and admires the region's marketing too. I like the catch line "grow wild".

Never heard of the Paso wine region? Sandwiched between the desert and the Pacific coast, it's located halfway between San Francisco and Los Angeles. It has 26,000 acres of vines and produces 40 different wine varieties. 

You can read more about Paso here and see all the videos here

 (Okay - here's a bit of synchronicity, while I'm writing this the Barossa ad actually just came on during SkyNews this morning! That is just too weird). Watch it here.


FermentAsian ….. finally finding what all the fuss is about

“Haven’t you been there yet?” seemed the repeated response when ever I mentioned Monsieur D was taking me to FermentAsian, in Tanunda, for my birthday.

It seems we are way down the foodie chain when it comes to dining at this establishment, which has been opened for a couple of years.

Our booking was made three weeks out and closer to the day, I did come across a lot more people who, like us, were yet to go and even others who had never heard of it.

Post-dinner, my suggestion is do WHATEVER IT TAKES to get there for lunch or dinner.

Fresh betel leaves with sticky caramelised pork and incendiary components.

“Divine, sublime, delicious” is my refrain whenever I really, really enjoy something: a bit like Kath & Kim’s “noice, different, unusual” – except I'm not joking.

The DSD came out this night.

I had remembered John Lathlean, in The Australian, had written previously that chef and co-owner Tuoi Do “cooks with the hand of an angel”. That almost reverential tone stuck in my memory; here’s the original review and re-reading it after our visit, it totally sums up our experience.

My reasons for recommending FermentAsian?

This is cooking with harmony. Everything is delicately flavoured and in proportion.

Quality of ingredients.

The crackling on the pork belly. The broth on the warm mushroom salad. 

It’s in the middle of Tanunda.

The service is considered with the right amount of attention.

The smart, modern and comfortable interior.

The menu. The wine list.

It’s probably the best South East Asian food you’ll eat anywhere. Yes, really.

At our lovely young waitress' suggestion, we shared two entrees and two mains but opted for a mushroom salad instead of a side of seasonal vegetables stir-fried.

You can read more about FermentAsian here – and check out the menu and wine list. Click in the arrows below to scroll through photos of what we ate.

Our choices:

Thit lon cuon la lot
 Fresh betel leaves with sticky caramelised pork and incendiary components (4) $14

Nen Ha Noi 
Hanoi spring rolls with salad of fresh herbs and 
classic Vietnamese dipping sauce (2) $14

Tom sao ot 
Stir fried SA squid with chilli jam and Thai basil $26

Lon voi gung va cam
 Barossa Berkshire pork belly with ginger and orange sauce $26

Goi nam 
Warm mixed mushroom salad with galangal dressing $22

Bru lee chanh 
Lime brûlée $12