Pialligo Estate’s Winter Event Series, ‘The Butcher, the Baker, and the Merrymaker’, came to an end a few weeks ago, and The RiotACT was lucky enough to be invited along to the Wildbrumby Banquet. The series of events were not only the perfect opportunity for Pialligo Estate to showcase their award-winning hospitality, but to also highlight amazing local produce, including their own Pialligo Smokehouse products.
This dinner in particular, partnered with Jindabyne’s very own Wildbrumby Distillery, which produces premium schnapps, gin, and wine. The distillery worked alongside the talented culinary team from Pialligo Estate to provide pairings for each dish.
Hosted in The Glasshouse, Pialligo Estate’s picturesque event space, with floor to ceiling windows offering views of the Canberra night skyline, rustic timber tables were adorned with fresh floral bouquets and simple white candles, creating an intimate setting, perfect for enjoying a five-course meal.
The evening began with a welcome drink on arrival – a Wildbrumby Peach Bellini, accompanied by an Oyster & Gin “shooter”, a great kickstart to the event – setting the tone for what was to come.
Upon being seated, our glasses were filled by attentive staff offering a choice of Pialligo Estate’s own wines – the 2013 vintages of Riesling and Shiraz. The first course was Scallop, leek & dashi matched with the Wildbrumby Pink Lady Apple Schnapps. I’ve always loved scallops, and these were no exception. The simple flavour combination allowed the scallops to really shine, fresh and clean, and the perfect texture complemented by the leek.
Initially, I assumed the dinner was alternate service, as the guests both next to and opposite me were served a dish not shown on the menu. However, they informed me that they don’t eat seafood and we were all impressed that the chefs were able to accommodate their dietary requirements despite only learning of them upon their arrival.
The next course was my favourite dish of the evening – Slow cooked Atlantic Salmon with Wildbrumby Granny Smith Apple, lime and celery. The salmon was moist and tender – melt in your mouth. The sweetness of the Wildbrumby Apple, the crispness of the celery and the zest of the lime made this a truly memorable meal. Not only did the accompanying shot of Wildbrumby schnapps perfectly complement the dish, it also worked as great palate cleanser before the next course.
Stout braised pork belly with Wildbrumby Butterscotch glaze and crumble followed the salmon. The light, crunchy crackling was immediately a winner. The rich, decadent, sweetness of the butterscotch glaze and butterscotch schnapps on the side cut through the fattiness of the pork belly providing a succulent, moist finish.
The sweetness of the butterscotch in the last course, however, took some of the excitement out of dessert.
Peach Trifle with Wildbrumby Peach sabayon, as well as a platter of washed rind cheese with pear fondue, and matching Wildbrumby Pear and fennel sable rounded out the menu.
The trifle was my least favourite dish of the night, but I presume it was because I’ve always considered trifle to be a dessert an elderly relative brings along to Christmas lunch. To me this dessert was just missing the attention that all the other courses received, despite this, the poached fruit in the bottom of the glass was pretty satisfying. The waitress explained how the fruit is grown on-site in Pialligo Estate’s orchards then preserved in their own riesling, really flavoursome. (PS summer is looking great for stone-fruit from the Estate – peaches, plums and cherries to name but a few!)
The washed rind cheese was a nice way to finish the meal as we relaxed and chatting around the table enjoying the remainder of our wines.
Throughout the evening, entertainment was provided by way of a local musician, playing easy, acoustic sounds, interspersed with trivia & games arranged by Wildbrumby which made the night more light-hearted and interactive. One game involved being given a sample of 3 gins and having to answer questions about the spirit after just smelling and sipping them. Whilst everyone at the dinner was gifted a small bottle of Pink Lady Schnaps to take home, I was lucky enough to win a 500 mL bottle of their new Gin, which I’m still deciding on the right time to enjoy.
All in all, it was a fantastic evening with delicious food, and I’m looking forward to the next time I get the chance to indulge at Pialligo Estate.
Pialligo Estate is located at 18 Kallaroo Rd, Pialligo.
The Farmhouse Restaurant is open for Lunch Thurs – Sun & Dinner Wed – Sat
The more relaxed Garden Pavilions are open from Friday – Sunday, with breakfast available from 8am on weekends.
The Glasshouse is available for conferences and celebrations.
Contact Pialligo Estate on (02) 6247 6060 or via their website : www.pialligoestate.com.au