Teasers, Suggestions and Events

By Franz Scheurer

The second Maroubra Cellars wine
dinner will feature a seven course seafood degustation at Danny's Seafood Restaurant (1605 Anzac Ave, La Perouse) on the 30th March starting at 7.00pm. Wines featured on the night:

Jansz Premium NV cuvee sparkling (Tasmania)

Pirie 2004 Pinot Noir (Tasmania)

Pirie 2004 Chardonnay (Tasmania)

Forrest Hill Vineyard Riesling (WA)

Forrest Hill Vineyard Sauv Blanc Semillon (WA)

Forrest Hill Vineyard Shiraz (WA)

Yalumba Hand picked Botrytis Viognier (Wrattonbully)

Andrew Pirie and his brother David helped establish the first commercial vineyard in the modern era of Tasmanian wine production, establishing Pipers Brook in 1974. Andrew left Pipers Brook and established his own labels to much acclaim. These wines demonstrate his exceptional ability. Forrest Hill vineyard is the oldest commercial vineyard in the Great Southern wine region. The vast majority of vines are not irrigated, allowing deep natural root penetration resulting in exceptionally fragrant wines. Cost is $80.00 per person. For more information or bookings, call:

Maroubra Cellars on 02 9344 5556 or e-mail Mike Cutrupi at: mike@maroubracellars.com



Restaurant & Catering NSW & ACT CEO, Robert Goldman, said recently that restaurant tips should not be used to pay wages and were a gift from the diner to the waiter for good service. He was commenting on a small number of recent incidences where staff alleged that tips were being pooled and paid in lieu of wages prompting fears among some that isolated restaurants in NSW & ACT were moving to the US model where tips as wages are the norm. “This is the first time that this issue has arisen and we want to ensure that it does not take on,” he said.

“There is no reason for us to follow the US model. Waiters in the US get a basic minimum wage that is frankly not livable, so they depend on tips to top up their earnings.  That is not the case in Australia as we operate on a living-wage basis.”

And Goldman says – don’t hold back on tipping the waiter for good service.

“TIPS are for service and should be given directly to the waiters.” Robert stated the term TIP – originated in the early 1900s and was so named “To Insure Promptness”.  The Australian Gourmet Pages’ attitude is that the size of the tip reflects the quality of service and attitude of the service staff. We nearly always tip at least 10% but sometimes, when service has been careless, sloppy or rude, leaving no tip hopefully gets the point across. It’s just a pity that the service staff has no way of making the patrons pay them extra when patrons are rude… It’s a two-way street!



Vic’s Meat offers now Milk Fed Bobby Veal Racks
Bobby Veal are very small male calves that are killed at two weeks of age. They are, as a consequence, purely milk fed and offer delicate pale-coloured meat. These racks are available frozen only, as bobby veal is only occasionally available. The fact that these racks are frozen in no way detracts from the very high quality of this product. These racks are no larger than a lamb rack, weighing around 600 to 800 gm. Limited availability, $29.50 per kg. We finally start to see veal of the quality the Europeans have been enjoying for centuries.



Pello is encouraging you to take part in their Pinot Noir Journey. Explore the versatility of this difficult variety that arouses such passion and divides the punters from the lighter rosé styles to full-on blockbuster styles. The seven courses and six matched wines (from Victoria, Western Australia, Tasmania and New Zealand) will be a terrific culinary experience. Held at Pello on Thursday, 14th April 2005 at

$ 125 per person. For more information contact Thomas Johns 02 9360 4640



Join Peter Bourne in his terrific four-night introductory Wine Appreciation Course on Tuesday 26th April and 3rd, 10th and 17th May 2005 in this ‘Back to Basics’ over four fun and informative sessions. What is wine? How do we taste? What are generic styles and varietal wines all about? Taste the classic varieties along with the new and exciting fashion varietals. Explore the influence of winemaking on flavour and style. Cost of 4-night course is $255/person. If you have already participated in this course you might want to attend the next level: Advanced Wine Appreciation Course, starting on Wednesdays 4th May and 11th, 18th and 25th, 6.30pm to 9.00pm. This course focuses on the classic European regions with the first night looking at Riesling in France, Germany, Austria and New Zealand. Night two will feature the Burgundian varieties Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. The Rhone region is the focus on the third night with its Viognier, Shiraz, Grenache and Mourvedre. The final night will look at Semillon, Sauvignon Blanc and the five red varieties that hail from Bordeaux. Cost of 4-night course $360.

For more information and bookings call: 02 9552 2366

or email: thewineman@peterbourne.com



The Malt Whisky Society Of Australia has just opened bookings for Australia's Malt Whisky Convention, from 19th to 21st August 2005. Join Michael Urquhart, Ronnie Cox, Doug Belford, David Baker, and me, Franz Scheurer, in 3 Masterclasses, 3 Plenary Sessions, The Gala Whisky Dinner & The Great Whisky Exposition, all held under one roof at The Avillion Hotel, in Sydney’s CBD.

Full Package $530 (does not include accommodation)

To book go to:


If you love Single Malts you must be there!



Spotted on the weekend in Claude’s kitchen in Woollahra: Janni Kyritsis manning the burners. Does this mean Chui has managed to coax Janni into practising for a ‘guest chef’ appearance at this venerable restaurant or is he finally getting so bored with his holidays that he’s happy to lend a hand anywhere he’s needed? We shall keep an eye on developments!



On Tuesday 22nd March four chefs will cook an 8-course degustation menu, showcasing their classic restaurant dishes at Fins Restaurant in Byron Bay.  Steven Snow has managed to convince Armando Percuoco, Janni Kyritsis and Tetsuya Wakuda to help him put on this special dinner in aid of the Tsunami victims.

Janni will cook his ‘Steamed Fillet of Beef in Bone Marrow Dumpling with Tapenade and Madeira Sauce’ and also serve his fabulous ‘Tomato Consommé’.

Tetsuya will showcase his classic ‘Confit of Petuna Ocean Trout with Konbu & Summer Vegetables’ and a dish ofRice Vermicelli with Smoked Eggplant & Tonburi’.

Armando will cook ‘Fettuccine al Tartufovo’, fettuccine with cream and parmesan, topped with a fried truffled egg and tossed at the table, and ‘Quaglie alla Griglia con Vincotto’, grilled deboned quails with caramelised figs.
Steven Snow will offer ‘Sea Salt Cured Local Jewfish Balls’ with drinks. His first course will be ‘Byron in the Raw: Sashimi of Brunswick Prawns and Cobia with Possum Creek Finger Lime’ and he will also be responsible for the last course, which will be ‘Pear Parfait, Warm Brie de Nangis, Armagnac Infused Prune and Pinot Noir Syrup’.

Should be a fabulous night! With these guys on the loose in Byron Bay all I can suggest is: get into party mode, quickly! Cost: $ 275 per person including wines.

For more information or bookings call Fins on: 02 6685 5029



The fabulous cooked raw milk cheeses of Switzerland: Gruyere and Emmenthal, were traditionally aged in huge sandstone caves in the Swiss mountains. Alas once technology progressed and demand increased, humidity and temperature controlled warehousing became the norm. Seems the old cheese makers finally managed to convince the accountants that the taste is simply not the same. After close to 50 years of controlled warehousing, Gruyere and Emmenthal have moved back to the caves.  These huge sandstone caves hold the cheese at a constant 94% humidity and at a temperature of 12.5 C, as duplicated in the artificial atmosphere in the warehouses, but the real secret to the optimal ripening of the cheeses lies in the mineralised air of these caves. Cheeses are a living thing and react quickly to their environment. These new (and at this stage quite exclusive) ‘cave aged’ cheeses are sold at 3, 8 and 14 months old. No doubt we will soon see them in Australia.



And finally, thanks to help from Scottish cookbook writer Sue Lawrence, for all of you who just can’t wait for winter, the time to make your own haggis, here’s an authentic recipe:



(From The Scots Kitchen, 1929) by F Marian McNeill


The large stomach bag (sheep / lamb)

The smaller bag

The pluck (lights, liver and heart)

Beef suet


Onion, black pepper, salt, water


Brown and toast a breakfast-cup of oatmeal in front of the fire. Clean the great bag thoroughly and soak it overnight in cold salted water.  In the morning put it aside with the rough side turned out.  Wash the small bag and the pluck and put them on to boil covered with cold water, leaving the windpipe hanging out over the pot to let out any impurities.


Let them boil for an hour and a half, then take them out and cut away the pipes and any superfluities of gristle. Mince the heart and lights and grate half the liver. Put them into a basin with half a pound of minced suet, one or two finely chopped onions and the oatmeal and season highly with black pepper and salt.  Over the whole pour as much of the liquid in which the pluck was boiled as this will make the composition sappy.


Fill the great bag rather more than half-full; say five-eighths, as it requires plenty of room to swell. Sew it securely and put into a large pot of hot water (into which half pint of milk is often added). As soon as it begins to swell, prick it all over with a large needle to prevent it bursting.  Boil steadily without the lid for 3 hours. Serve very hot without any garnish.


Should the haggis be made some time before it is wanted, it should be reheated by being put into a pot of boiling water and allowed to boil without the lid for an hour and a half.  The small bag may be omitted.

Bon Appetit!