Australia, We Saluté You
“Australian’s all let us rejoice, for we are young and free”. Well, I don’t know about the young part but it is wonderful to live in a country where we have freedom of speech and freedom of choice. We are a multicultural melting pot with influences coming from everywhere and these influences, happily, have made it down into the food we eat and the wines we drink. For me, growing up in an Italian household meant that salami, radicchio, and crostoli were just as much a part of my daily diet, as were Vegemite and Sao biscuits.
When my daughters were younger, a Cambodian family moved into the Yarra Valley with the children attending Dixons Creek Primary School. The local school children were taught a few words in Khmer in anticipation of the new arrivals and there was much excitement when they finally came along to our little school.
When the eldest of this family celebrated her birthday party, pretty much most of the local kids were there. Mixed in amongst the hot chips with tomato sauce and other ‘strine delights were scrumptious home-made spring rolls, fried rice and other delicious Cambodian dishes. Her mother was clearly trying to ensure she had all bases covered. Just trying to fit in. The local kids tucked into the hot chips (as they do) but I was delighted to see them wolfing down just as many Spring rolls as well (they were so good).
These Cambodian children, who could barely speak a word of English when they arrived have gone onto university and done very well for themselves. Australia, still the land of opportunity. “We’ve golden soil and wealth for toil…”
Australia Day, for however contentious its origins, is an important day of celebration for the many different nationalities who now call this country home. Whether you are an illiterate Italian who arrived here in the early 1920’s and set up a small family wine company (my grandfather) or the Cambodian child who arrived here in the early 1990’s and has gone on to become a doctor. It wasn’t easy for them but they had faith in their new country and were prepared to work hard.
So whatever your reason to celebrate this Thursday 26th January, do so by opening a bottle of your favourite Australian wine, or even better, try something new and Aussie. Behind every bottle of Australian wine is an interesting story, backed by good solid people (and the occasional larrikin) who work hard to make their living from the land.
“…In joyful strains then let us sing…”
Cheers, Cin cin, Santé, Prost, Kanpai….
In my glass....
I love this wine. When we decided to add a Pinot Gris blend to the La Boheme Range, one could have thought that even Dame Nellie Melba would have approved of it. After all it was one of her favourite operas to perform. Named ‘Act 3′ in the range , the Pinot Gris is backed up by Riesling and Geuwrztraminer and the result is a beautifully aromatic white wine. Very enjoyable on its own but quite chummy with salmon or chicken.
Autumn is truly a spectacular time in the Yarra Valley, with the earth showing its full bounty. Join our head chef, Heath Dumesny, for a morning cooking demonstration followed by a long table luncheon matched with our Estate grown wines. Experience the enjoyment & satisfaction of growing your own produce & cooking it up into something delicious. Numbers are limited. Date: 14 April, 2013. Time:10am – 3pm Cost: $125pp. To book: Phone 03 5965 2271
On my Plate....
Looking for a very tasty but rather easy dish to make. Why not try my Chicken Cacciatore. Perfect with polenta or rice for those cool Autumn days. Make a big batch and you have lunch sorted for the next day! http://www.debortoli.com.au/cellar-doors/de-bortoli-recipes.html#march-2013