- Written by Nick Breeze (@NickGBreeze) Nick Breeze (@NickGBreeze)
- Published: 14 May 2014 14 May 2014
Official wine partner to BAFTA, Villa Maria wines from New Zealand, was delighted to host an intimate lunch for television entertainer, actress and singer Cilla Black yesterday at fellow BAFTA partner, Hotel Chocolat’s restaurant Rabot 1745. Held in honour of the Special Award that she will be given at the Arqiva British Academy Television Awards in 2014 on Sunday 18th May, the lunch was attended by General Manager Winemaking and Viticulture at Villa Maria, Alastair Maling MW, as well as close friends and colleagues who have played a significant part in her hugely successful career.
This year the Special Award is given in recognition of Cilla Black’s contribution to entertainment over her 50-year career.Regularly drawing audiences of around 18 million, she has hosted more than 500 television shows and made around 400 guest appearances on others. Considered a national treasure by the British public, she is one of the few television personalities that can be recalled by their first name alone.
Guests attending the event included some familiar names from the world of television including actor and TV presenter Christopher Biggins and actress Lorraine Chase. Fiona Mottershaw, Villa Maria Brand Manager also attended.
The intimate lunch took place at unique cocoa restaurant Rabot 1745 in London’s Borough Market. Guests were welcomed with a special cocktail made using Villa Maria Lightly Sparkling Sauvignon Blanc and called ‘Anyone Who Had a Heart’ after her 1964 No 1. hit single. They then enjoyed a specially prepared lunch with each course carefully matched to the following Villa Maria wines.
Ø The Roast and Conch Salad (Green leaves and herbs with smoked mackerel and cacao pesto,
potatoes, eggs, baked tomatoes, gruyere cheese)
Paired with Villa Maria Cellar Selection Riesling 2008
Ø Warm Cacao Spiced Eggplant (Roast cacao nib bread and herbed crème fraiche)
Paired with Villa Maria Cellar Selection Sauvignon Gris 2013
Ø Seared Plantation Pork Terrine (Shaved cornichons, chairmans rum chutney and a rack of nib bread)
Paired with Villa Maria Cellar Selection Riesling 2008
Ø Braised Beef One-Pot (Braised cacao balsamic beef with herb and cacao nib dumplings)
Paired with Villa Maria Cellar Selection Syrah 2009
Ø Roast Fillet of Cod (Cacao nib spinach, celeriac puree, port nib sauce)
Paired with Villa Maria Cellar Selection Pinot Noir 2012
Ø Rabot Risotto (Wild mushroom risotto cooked cacao vegetable stock, asparagus, cacao nib and cheese crackling)
Paired with Villa Maria Cellar Selection Arneis 2013 or Villa Maria Cellar Selection Pinot Noir 2012
Ø Warm Banana and Cacao Nib Bread (Whipped rabot cream, warm pouring conched chocolate)
Ø Conched Chocolate and Coffee Mousse (Served with Brittany shortbread and Rabot 1754 ice cream)
Both paired with Villa Maria Reserve Noble Riesling Botrytis Selection 2011
The Arqiva British Academy Television Awards will be broadcast on Sunday 18 May on the BBC at 8pm.
Join our mailing list for occasional updates of what we have been up to:
Soave: volcanic wines with elegance and longevity
Sitting inside the ancient castle walls inside the town of Soave, a short drive from Verona in northern Italy, the unique slightly almond aroma of the indigenous grape, Garganega, rises gently from my glass. The castle sprawls up the side of an extinct volcano that gives the region its variant soil structures that mark out the better quality of Soave wines.
An American In Paris; Tanisha Townsend (@GirlMeetsGlass) discusses podcasts, Paris wine bars, & what she's drinking at the moment
Tanisha Townsend decided to move to Paris 4 years ago after regularly passing through the city en route to the world’s most famous vineyards. In fact, it was about 2 years ago at the Printemps de Champagne Bouzy Rouge tasting in Reims that I saw (who we shall now refer to as) GirlMeetsGlass chirpily speaking to her web followers on Snapchat.
Wine tasting in Galicia: The pilgrims search for Albarino
The cathedral in Santiago de Compostela, the final resting place of Saint James, rises out of the landscape, infested with antiquity. The rambling steep streets give way to shafts of dramatic light, emblazoned chapels, and tightly packed tapas bars, dusty, as old novels pressed together in antiquarian bookshops.
Interview: (Re)Defining the Entre-Deux-Mers, climate change & tasting with Stephane Dupuch
Driving into the Entre-Deux-Mers region from the north, the vineyards roll out like a bright green deep-pile carpet across the undulating land. It’s hard not to be excited about tasting wines with so much heritage, as we head to Chateau-Sainte-Marie to meet with 5th generation owner, Stéphane Dupuch.
Wine tasting in northern Catalonia in the foothills of the Pyrenees
It’s been a hot couple of weeks here trekking around northern Catalonia. From the homeland and backdrop to surrealist Salvador Dali’s world to dramatic remnants of the volcano park an hour away, this place is a land of rough-hewn vistas and rustic hospitality.
Talking food and wine & Carluccio's motto: "MOF MOF"
Carluccio's deli and restaurants are a high-street staple, where great flavours in food blend easily with quality wines on the list. Following the death of the charismatic founder, Antonio Carluccio, his spirit lives on in style and philosophy. Nick Breeze talks to Head of International Operations (especially where wine is concerned!), Mike Stocks about wine-list tips, food matching and the great man of "mof mof":