Game On! Are you up for a wild challenge?

Game On! Are you up for a wild challenge?
  • Written by
  • Dee Ellwood

It may be Winter but that’s no reason to lock the doors and stay in the for the night. In fact, countrywide chefs are upping the ante in their restaurant kitchens and inviting customers to experience a taste of the wild – Taupo’s Bistro Lago included.

For the fifth year running, Kiwi winery, Cloudy Bay, has challenged 14 of New Zealand’s renowned chefs to participate in a nationwide Pinot and Game tasting trail across June. Encouraging local chefs to innovate through game and wine pairing – and to utilise local seasonal produce, and inviting restaurant goers to break wintertime routines and dare to indulge in something a little more different.

“The trail provides a tasty way to break away from the classic dinner routine and expands culinary horizons by incorporating new combinations of warming food and wine pairings,” says Kat Mason, Cloudy Bay’s wine communications manager.

And this year’s meat and wine pairings have been carefully picked to ‘unearth’ flavours.

“Game meat pairings require a wine with a faint touch of acid to pierce through the meat’s earthy flavour,” says Antony Bearman, Auckland’s Oyster & Chop head chef. “Cloudy Bay’s Pinot Noir and Te Wahi were made to match with the unique taste profile of each of the meats we’ve chosen.”

For those Taupo diners game enough to dine out on a little local innovation before the end of June, Bistro Lago’s chef Gareth Stewart is serving up a rabbit ravioli – matched with Cloudy Bay Pinot. For those heading out of town, Prego and Oyster & Chop – both Auckland-based restaurants, and Queenstown’s Botswana Butchery, are all dishing up unique mouthfuls.

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