Monday, 21 April 2008

Glass half Full

I have been away from the post for a few days finalising the details needed to get me back into the very comfortable saddle of my kitchen and taking care of you in the dining room.
The re-opening date [May 11] is fast approaching and we are in the middle of finalising the opening wine list. This week concentrating on the wines of the Moorabool Valley a district that has developed into a seriously good source of very fine wine. Amietta, Austin’s, Bannockburn, Cohen, Clyde Park, Del Rios, by Farr and Farr rising, Provenance, Lethbridge to name but a few, have provided some stunning bottles.
In the last 8 years over 50 new wineries have popped up in the Geelong Otway region so compiling the list is proving a bit daunting. The Bellarine is the next stop.
How to organise wines by the glass for a small restaurant with limited opening hours is at the forefront of our planning.
Why is it that so many wine lists offer wines by the glass mainly from the cheaper end of the range on offer?
Do they think that all moderate drinkers are all on a budget?
Or do they think that there is less of a chance of wastage from this price bracket?
I am facing this challenge by offering the first 4 or 5 reds and the first 4 or 5 whites from the whole list selected by the diners for pouring. So if you want to compare an aged Bannockburn with a new one it will be possible. If, as with Diane and I, sometimes you would like to try the best Riesling and a great Shiraz with the same dish there will not be a conflict. As each bottle is finished a different one can be chosen to be poured. I am betting that the top end will be the first to be requested. BYO as always will also be available.
The new format of the menu is a bit simpler to organise. The effect I am trying to attain is that of coming to the home of a professional cook but he has all his staff there to make you comfortable. Which is actually exactly what it is.
I apologise to those who could not get in for the first few lunches it will settle down soon enough. Two issues are proving the most difficult to solve: finding a great male waiter to balance the ladies on the floor, and one that is even harder to organise RAIN.
[glass on a photograph by Adrian lander]

One from the archives of 2002
* mama’s in the basement mixing up macedoine
i’m on the pavement thinking bout a toblerone,
man in a chef’s hat, locked in a big sweat
wants eleven crème brulee and I’ve only got ten,
look out kid your gonna get hid,
better duck down the cool school, looking for a new brule
break a few rule, t’s a bit cruel,
the torch wont work cos the comis took the gas tool.

It has been a year of cooking dangerously….. [for more click here]


Jack said...

Loving the glass wine idea George. Especially perfect considering lots of your guests will be driving. When I make my way to visit next month, we will definitely be thinking quality not quantity, all washed down with some of your sparkling well water.
Can't wait, your blog is such a tease about the treats that lay ahead!

Sunnybrae and all who sail in her said...

Don't mean to tease and be prepared for a dry dry garden and some empty dams, but, a well-stocked larder.
The soda syphon maintainence schedule is proving to be a bit of fun, every model has its own idiosyncracies I can see some slapstick in the summer months. Outside I hope. Important hint when filling a syphon; use a cloth arround the bomb as it will freeze your hand to it without one.
But seriously water is the basis of everything. We can't plant anything new until it rains heavily here. The whole district is in the same [grounded] boat.

Another Outspoken Female said...

My local, Geralds Bar, has the same method of selecting wine by the glass. It seems to work. They do 3 red, 3 white.

Hope you get some rain soon. Melbourne is having a gentle sprinkle every day. We held off planting our little innercity garden til the beginning of autumn and haven't had to water it at all.

Good luck with the opening.