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Food

The Top 5 BYO Restaurants in Melbourne

Get set to bring that favourite bottle out of the cellar as we present the best BYO restaurants in Melbourne.

SCOPRI

Ask any Melburnian with an Italian leaning where they would take an aged Barolo, and it’s always Scopri. $15 per bottle corkage will get you glassware and a smooth Italian waiter.

Recommended Wine: What grows together, goes together. Think Italians reds like Barolo or Montepulciano and VermentinoFiano and Pinot Grigio for whites.

Corkage: $15 per bottle

191 Nicholson St, Carlton

Visit the Scopri website

Mamak

Inexpensive and delicious with corkage at just $2 per head so you can focus on the delicious Malaysian fare – don’t forget the Roti bread.

Recommended Wine: Reds with medium tannins like GSM or Merlot are a good choice for spicy cuisine. So too are light and aromatic whites such as Riesling or Sauvignon Blanc.

Corkage: $2 per person

366 Lonsdale St, Melbourne

Visit the Mamak website

LADRO

You want pizza in Prahran or fettucine in Fitzroy? You got it. On Mondays, you can bring your own and enjoy a slice of the action with the $5 corkage going to two amazing local charities.

Recommended Wine: Bring along a good Italian red variety like a Montepulciano or Nebbiolo. For whites, think VermentinoPinot Grigio or Fiano.

Corkage: $5 every Monday with all proceeds going to Vinnies Vannies and the Prahran Mission. BYO also available at $15 per bottle Tuesday to Sunday at the Fitzroy Ladro.

Ladro @ 224 Gertrude St, Fitzroy and Ladro TAP @ 162 Greville St, Prahran

Find out more about the Ladro charity BYO

VICASIA

Some call this the best Asian BYO in the city and it already has a three glass rated wine list, but for $15, you can pair dumplings with your own Riesling.

Recommended Wine: Gewürztraminer is a great choice as it is similar to Riesling, but has more rose petal and lychee flavours that match well with Ken Yuen’s modern Chinese cuisine. For red wine, we recommend a medium-bodied Pinot Noir from the Yarra or Mornington or a subtle Hunter Valley Shiraz.

Corkage: $15 per bottle

95 Victoria Ave, Albert Park

Visit the VicAsia website

FRANCE-SOIR

The original and best, for over 30 years, Jean-Paul Prunetti’s bistro has been a leading light in Melbourne’s restaurant scene. Marry your best French bottles to some of the classiest French food in the city.

Recommended Wine: Bring along your favourite french import, or your best ChardonnayCab Sav or Pinot Noir.

Corkage: $15 every day except Saturdays

11-13 Toorak Rd, South Yarra

Visit the France-Soir website:

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Wine
Know Your Variety – Pinot Noir
Ahhh Pinot Noir! There’s no doubting that Pinot is one of the most revered and collected wine styles in the world, with the top examples from its homeland in Burgundy selling for outrageous sums of money. It is generally quite delicate, and it takes a certain development of one's palate to truly appreciate its delightful nuances, perfumed aromas, textural elements and supple tannin profile. Find out more about this sophisticated varietal that Josef Cromy chief winemaker, Jeremy Dineen describes as “Subtle, intriguing and complex, it’s both a thinking person’s wine and a bloody good drink!”
Origins of Pinot Noir Pinot Noir has been grown in France’s Burgundy region for centuries. Burgundy is home to some of the world’s most expensive agricultural land, and some of the world’s most costly wines made from Pinot Noir are grown here. It’s possible that a clone of Pinot Noir made its way to Australia with the First Fleet in 1788, and it was definitely part of the collection of vines that James Busby established in the Hunter Valley in the early 1800s. Pinot Noir should be ethereal and hint at its origins or the soil it came from. Tannins are typically fine and soft, expanding at the back of the palate –referred to as a peacock’s tail finish. The best examples age well and often take some years to realise their true character. When tasting Pinot Noir, it’s worth bearing in mind that it’s not a big red wine, but that it is all about delicacy and length, harmony and finesse. Pinot Noir is also one of the classic Champagne grapes, and is prized around the world for the production of  Sparkling wine. Winemakers love a challenge, and there is no doubt that Pinot is a challenging grape to grow, and even more challenging to make. The Burgundians have certainly nailed it, but they have been practicing for thousands of years, and this is part of the key. The cool climate of Burgundy has proven to be a major factor, as is the geology of the soils there, but they have also shown the variety to be very site-specific – vines grown in adjacent vineyards, and even different spots within the same vineyard, can produce very different results. Vine age too, is critical. True of most varieties, but especially Pinot Noir, the best fruit tends to come from mature vineyards, considered to be around 15 years old or more. Yields too, need to be kept low to get the best out of this grape, as it needs all the flavour concentration it can get to show its best. More about Australian Pinot Noir Pinot Noir was planted unsuccessfully in the late 1800s in Coonawarra , but was better suited to conditions in southern Victoria before phylloxera and other farming practises virtually wiped out the variety. The  Yarra Valley ’s re-emergence as a wine region coincided with the rebirth of Pinot Noir, and today it is the most widely planted red varietal in that region. The cool climates of  Tasmania and the  Adelaide Hills also offer great sites for Pinot Noir, while Western Australia’s  Pemberton and  Great Southern regions are showing potential to create fine Pinot Noir. Pinot Noir has steadily grown in popularity in Australia as consumers search for an alternative to fuller reds made from  Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon . The best examples of Pinot Noir are grown in cooler conditions. Pinot Noir is temperamental and sensitive to a whole range of influences in both vineyard and winery. Australian Pinot Noir is typically low in colour pigmentation, has a perfumed nose and shows red fruit such as cherry, raspberry and blood plum flavours balanced by smooth tannins. Great Pinot Noir should age well and develop complex truffle, game and earthy characters.
Australian Pinot Noir Regions Australian winemakers have taken the lessons learnt in France to heart - gradually developing ever-cooler areas to grow Pinot, working out the best soil types, and carefully exploring the ideal sites within each vineyard to grow this fickle variety. They're also working out the best clones and the most appropriate vine spacing, and then managing the vine canopy to allow just the right amount of dappled sunlight to reach the ripening bunches. Our vines are getting older, reaching that critical phase of maturity, and yields are managed carefully to coax the maximum from each berry. Once in the winery, the grapes need careful handling due to their thin skins and low phenolic content, so physical pump-overs are kept to a minimum. These days more and more winemakers are including a percentage of stems in the ferment to enhance the aromatic and textural qualities of the finished wine, and oak usage is more skilfully matched to the style being produced. Tasmanian Pinot Noir Tasmania  has an ideal climate for Pinot Noir, for both Sparkling and table wine production. Some of the most exciting Australian Pinot Noir is produced in Tasmania, particularly on the east coast. Macedon Ranges Pinot Noir Given its striking affinity with Pinot Noir, this cool, elevated region is among the finest in Victoria for the variety. Pinots from Macedon Ranges  show restraint, power, finesse and complexity, all the hallmarks of great Pinot Noir. It’s also a serious Sparkling wine producing region. Geelong Pinot Noir Home to some of the first great Australian Pinot Noir examples, the Geelong  region produces concentrated wines with dark cherry and green olive fruit, and good depth. Mornington Peninsula Pinot Noir Some fine Australian Pinot Noirs are produced on the Mornington Peninsula . These wines are light and elegant yet show fabulous complexity and are often very approachable in their youth. Yarra Valley Pinot Noir The  Yarra Valley has made exceptional Pinot Noir for some time. The wines are light in character, elegant and very approachable in their youth. Pemberton Pinot Noir The cool Western Australian region of Pemberton  is making a name for quality medium-bodied, complex Pinot Noirs with attractive new world flavours of plum, cassis and mocha. Great Southern Pinot Noir We have seen a marked increase in the number and quality of Pinots coming from the West in recent years, particularly from the vast  Great Southern  area encompassing the five distinct sub-regions of Albany, Denmark, Frankland River, Mount Barker and Porongorup. Pinot Noir styles are varied with complex savoury styles from Denmark; elegant perfumed styles from Porongurup; rich fruit-driven styles from Mount Barker; big robust styles from Albany; lighter primary fruit styles from Frankland River.  New South Wales Pinot Noir  Also look towards the cool climate NSW regions of Tumbarumba and Orange for premium Pinot Noir. And surprisingly, there are small quantities grown in the Hunter Valley where the tradition of blending Shiraz and Pinot, perfected by the legendary winemaker, Maurice O’Shea, is making a resurgence.
Matching food with Pinot Noir With varying styles within the varietal and the influences of regionality, Pinot Noir is quite a versatile red for food matching. Here are some suggestions: Lighter-style Pinot Charcuterie, ham, pâtés, terrines, goat cheese, and fresh green vegetables like asparagus. Sweetly fruited Pinot Crispy duck, grilled quail, char siu pork, seared salmon and tuna, and dishes with beetroot, figs or cherries. Elegant Pinot Mushroom dishes, grilled lobster, roast chicken, rack of lamb, and roast pork with fennel. Fuller-bodied Pinot Lamb, chargrilled steak, venison, cassoulet, duck, coq au vin, roast turkey, brie and blue cheeses
Life
What’s on in August
We hope you’re ready for an action-packed August. Say hi to our friendly teams at the Perth Home Show, the Ekka Brisbane, Antiques Fair Sydney, Ferragosto Festival Sydney and the Good Food & Wine Show Perth. Save on Special Member Discount Tickets If you’re in Sydney or Perth, don’t miss out on discount tickets to two fantastic events – the Grape, Grain and Graze Festival and the Good Food & Wine Show Perth.
Grape, Grain and Graze Festival Sydney – Saturday, August 11. The Grape, Grain & Graze Festival is your opportunity to taste incredible wines from the 2,200+ entries from the 2018 KPMG Sydney Royal Wine Show, enjoy products from the 2018 Sydney Royal Beer & Cider Show and satisfy food cravings at grazing stations laden with Sydney Royal medal-winning food. As a special offer for Wine Selectors members, you are eligible for $14 off all single tickets which have an RRP ticket price of $90. Use code WINESELECTORS2018 at checkout.  Click here to purchase tickets. 
Good Food & Wine Show Perth – Friday, August 24 to Sunday, August 26. This is Wine Selectors’ 7th year at the Good Food & Wine Show and we’re thrilled to be once again presenting a host of exciting Cellar Door Sessions at the next show in Perth.  Our Cellar Door Sessions will have you tasting and experiencing the amazing diversity and quality of Australian wine. Join our expert hosts for a delicious selection of fun wine adventures such as Rip Roaring Reds, Meat Your Match, Fireside Wines, Pop, Bubble & Fizz, Brunch Wines, and Takeout Tastings. Tickets to the Cellar Door class sessions are $25 in addition to General Admission tickets. To learn more about each session and to book  CLICK HERE .   As a Wine Selectors Member, you save 30% off the General Admission Good Food & Wine ticket price! To receive the discount, buy your tickets before 12th August. Simply  CLICK HERE  to secure your discounted tickets now. Discount excludes Cellar Session tickets. The coupon will automatically apply.  Catch-up with our Teams Our Wine Selectors teams love to catch-up with our Members, so if you’re at any of the following events during August drop by our stands for a tasting. Perth Home Show – Friday, August 10 to Sunday, August 12. www.perthhomeshow.com.au The Royal QLD Show/Ekka – Friday, August 10 to Sunday, August 19. www.ekka.com.au Antiques Fair Sydney – Thursday, August 16 to Sunday, August 19. www.aaada.org.au Melbourne Home Show – Thursday, August 16 to Sunday, August 19. www.melbournehomeshow.com.au Ferragosto Festival Sydney – Sunday, August 19. www.facebook.com/FerragostoNSW Wining and Dining with Wine Selectors in August Time flies when you’re having fun, so get your social calendar sorted for August with our exclusive Member events:
Meat Your Match Brisbane Calling all carnivores! No matter how you love your meat, whether it’s barbequed, braised, roasted or grilled, you’re going to love our Meat Your Match dinner. Join us at Ben O’Donoghue’s Billykart West End on Thursday, August 30 to indulge in an incredible meat feast matched with a superb selection of hand-picked Australian wines. Hosted by our Wine Selectors Wine Educator, you’ll discover and devour fantastic new ways to prepare your favourite meats, plus explore the ins and outs of wine matching. Bring your friends along for an incredible feast! Book now . 
Cheese and Wine Masterclass Newcastle Join us at the Beach Hotel, Merewether on Friday, August 17 for a delicious journey with some of the world’s best cheeses paired perfectly with wine at our Cheese & Wine Masterclass! Your hosts, Black Pearl Epicure’s General Manager and cheese expert Peter Gross, and Selector’s Paul Diamond, will guide you through the cheesemaking process, explain the vast array of cheese styles, and reveal the art of cheese and wine appreciation. Book now .

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Food
The Top 5 BYO Restaurants in Sydney
Words by Ben Hallinan & Patrick Haddock on 27 Mar 2017
Here are the best BYO restaurants in Sydney and the wines you should bring along with you. GOLDEN CENTURY Not only does this Chinatown landmark have a stellar list, but they also allow you to bring top Pinot to pair with duck. Open till 2 am. Recommended Wine: Aromatic dry whites like  Gewürztraminer  or  Riesling  are a great match for Chinese cuisine. However, why not try a savoury low tannin red like a Yarra Valley  Pinot Noir  or Hunter Valley  Shiraz , which match perfectly with duck and sweet pork dishes. Corkage: $8 per person 393-399 Sussex St, Sydney Visit the Golden Century website SEAN’S PANAROMA
A Bondi institution where two hatted food can be easily paired with your perennial favourites. Recommended Wine:  Vermentino ,  Pinot Grigio or  Sauvignon Blanc  match perfectly with the Mediterranean inspired menu and seaside setting. But, if your main targets on the menu are their fresh seafood dishes, then  Semillon  is the classic seafood match. For red wine purists, an excellent  GSM or  Merlot is a good option. Corkage: $25 per bottle 270 Campbell Parade, Bondi Beach Visit Sean’s Panaroma website TETSUYA’S
Still the original temple of gastronomy that allows you to bring favoured and special bottles. Recommended Wine: Crisp, dry whites such as an off-dry  Riesling ,  Gewürztraminer  or Semillon match perfectly with the French inspired, Japanese cuisine on offer. Tetsuya’s is one of Sydney’s top foodie destinations, so don’t be afraid to bring out the big guns with that aged bottle of  Tyrrell’s Vat 1 Semillon  you’ve been saving. Corkage: BYO by prior arrangement at the time of booking. $30 for the first bottle, $45 for subsequent bottles. 529 Kent St, Sydney Visit the Tetsuya’s website BAR REGGIO
Possibly the cheapest yet well loved BYO in Sydney where industry folk pair Grand Cru Burgundy with pizza. Recommended Wine: When thinking of Italian food and wine, always consider ‘what grows together, goes together’. That means  Sangiovese ,  Nebbiolo , Montepulciano and Nero d’Avola for reds and  Vermentino , Fiano or  Pinot Grigio  for whites. Corkage: $2.50 per person 135 Crown St, Darlinghurst Visit Bar Reggio website ONE PENNY RED
Offers superb modern Australian food, and once a month they tailor a four-course dinner to match wines from your cellar. Recommended Wine: A savoury  Tempranillo  would be a good choice. But, just bring that special bottle you’ve been saving and see what the chefs come up with. Corkage: $80 per person inclusive of BYO and 4 course custom menu. Minimum 4 people. Last Tuesday of every month. Bookings essential 2 Moonbie St, Summer Hill Find out more about the One Penny Red raid your cellar door dinners
Food
Massimo Bottura - Nourishing the soul
Words by Interview Lyndey Milan Words Mark Hughes on 12 Dec 2017
In the process of trying to recreate a food memory, chef Massimo Bottura started a movement that was designed to fight food waste, but has grown into a social triumph. In the opening to his latest book, Bread is Gold , Italian chef Massimo Bottura tells the story of how every morning he would fight with his brothers for the leftover bread from the previous night’s dinner to dip in warm milk with a splash of coffee and a liberal pouring of sugar. It is one of his fondest memories, reminding him of delicious food, but also time with his family and his dearly departed mother. A few years ago, he thought about recreating the recipe, and trying to recapture that glorious memory. It was the catalyst that evolved into a concept that evolved into social change. But more on that later. In essence, taking old food memories and recreating them is what has made Massimo famous and seen him reach the very top of the chef world. For the last few years his restaurant, Osteria Francescana in Modena on the northern outskirts of Milan, has been ranked in the top three in the world, last year, No.1, this year just behind New York’s Eleven Madison. A culinary renaissance
At Francescana, Massimo has taken Italian classics, memories and culinary ideas and transported them into the modern world. Combing his love of art and music with his culinary talent to create dishes titled Memories of a Mortadella Sandwich, The Crunchy Part of Lasagne, and his signature Five Ages of Parmigiano Reggiano. It’s been a culinary renaissance. Of course, messing with traditional Italian cooking created quite a stir in Italy and for that measure, it is understandable that he gained recognition internationally before he was eventually praised at home. And while Massimo has explored plenty of Italian history for his dishes, he insists he still has a wealth of heritage for future culinary inspirations, for the rest of his life, at the very least. “Maybe for 10 lives,” he says when chatting with Lyndey Milan at a special event organised by Italian coffee company Lavazza in Sydney earlier this year. “We have centuries of tradition that we can reinterpret and rediscover. “For instance, last autumn we created this dish detailed by a philosopher from Rome, Petronius, in a book of his. Over three pages he described an amazing dish with a beautiful big bird filled with another bird, filled with another bird, and then many small birds and then dates and figs – for me, that’s Italy. “So this is what I say to Italian chefs when they look for the next trend. Let’s be honest. Let’s go deep into our history and try to bring the best from the past into the future, not in a nostalgic way, but in a critical way.” A chance to make a change These days, Massimo is lauded for his ideas and for returning Italian cuisine to the top of the culinary world. He has used his time in the spotlight to full advantage. During Expo 2015 in Milan, Massimo was invited to cook for dignitaries. Instead, he used the opportunity to make a statement about food waste. His initial idea was to do a short-term pop-up at the city’s central train station and invite the world’s best chefs to cook leftover food for the homeless. But then, apparently, the Pope got involved. His holiness heard the chef’s idea, but thought it could be something done long term. Through the Catholic charity Caritas, an abandoned theatre in the poorest suburb of Milan was made available for Massimo’s ‘community kitchen’. He took the opportunity. Not wanting it to be a regular soup kitchen, he recruited well-known artists and designers to help transform the venue into a warm, inviting space, a restaurant for those who most likely have never even seen inside a Michelin-starred venue. It was named, Refettorio Ambrosiano, a Refettorio being a place where monks and nuns would eat their daily meals. “In a world where one third of the food we produce is thrown away, we need to ask ourselves: Could food wastage and hunger be an expression of the same problem? We believe so,” Massimo asks in Bread is Gold, a diary and collection of recipes from the Refettorio Ambrosiano project. Over the following months, more than 65 chefs turned surplus ingredients collected from the exhibition’s pavilions into nutritious meals served to the homeless and people in need in the area. Names like Ferran Adria, Rene Redzepi, Ana Ros and Alain Ducasse used their creative powers to turn discarded food into delicious dishes. “It was challenging and rewarding to be a chef in that kitchen. It brought out the best in everyone,” says Massimo. “And it’s important to show that chefs in 2017 are not just the sum of their recipes, we are much more than that. People need to know we are social agents and we can give to the people, to the world an example.” Nourishing the soul
Following this initial success, Massimo and his wife, Lara established Food for Soul, a non-profit organisation dedicated to nourishing the underprivileged. The Social Tables project in Bologna followed, then Refettorio Gastromotiva in Rio, converting surplus food from the Olympic Games into healthy meals. Refettorio Felix opened in London in June and there’s plans for projects in Berlin and the United States. “Food for Soul is not a charity project but a cultural one. Sharing a meal is not just a source of nourishment, but a gesture of inclusion,” says Massimo. “In looking for solutions to fight food waste, we found a wider impact. We became aware that a good meal in a beautiful and welcoming environment can change a community. “Will the role of chefs define the future of food? I am an optimist and I believe that we are already making positive change. A recipe, after all, is a solution to a problem. Choose to be part of the solution by cooking and sharing a meal around a table. It might be the most revolutionary thing you do all day.”
Food
Pacific Reef Fisheries Best of the Best RAS President's Medal
Words by Words Ed Halmagyi on 12 Jan 2017
Winner of the prestigious NSW Royal agricultural society president's medal, pacific reef fisheries are revolutionising aquaculture one luscious Cobia at a time. The rich alluvial plains that straddle Queensland's Burdekin River on the Whitsunday Coast are some of Australia's best agricultural land. Tomatoes, melons, capsicums and more find their way to markets all over the nation from here. But as the river nears the coast, salt-tinged air from the Coral Sea takes hold, making vegetable production less viable. Yet at Alva Beach an extraordinary story in Australian farming is unfolding. Nestled on the edge of the ocean, a vast series of deep 100m2 pools are laid out, each one teeming with life; swirling masses move below the surface, seen only by the way the water wrinkles in the sunlight. This unique farm is home to some of Australia's best seafood, for in these ponds, Pacific Reef Fisheries breed delicious tiger prawns, and one of the world's most impressive fish - the cobia. TROPICAL ORIGINS Australians usually refer to cobia as 'black kingfish', but this is misleading for the fish is actually a relative of remora, those sucker-fish seen attached to sharks in documentaries. Native to the world's tropical waters, it has an oil-rich pearl-white flesh, prized by chefs because that lush oil does not leach out when cooked - distinguishing cobia from other species. Cobia is also well-adapted to aquaculture, and the Alva Beach joint venture between  Pacific Reef Fisheries  and the Queensland Department of Primary Industries produces fish of unrivalled quality, plus the commercial, social and environmental standards under which it operates are world leading. For these reasons, Pacific Reef Fisheries was the recipient of the 2015 President's Medal from the NSW Royal Agricultural Society , Australia's top award for excellence in food. CONQUERING AQUACULTURE Two big challenges for aquaculture are inputs and outputs - feed and wastewater. Traditionally fishmeal has been made from vast quantities of trawled target species like pilchards and anchovies. While these fish are not currently under threat, that system is unsustainable as a growing aquaculture market will eventually pressure stock numbers. To this end, Pacific Reef are working with the CSIRO and other Australian businesses to replace wild fish with farmed sources. The effect is to create a positive net fish benefit - more fish come out than go in. As the fish are farmed in on-land ponds, as opposed to traditional sea cages, the quantity of feed input is more easily controlled, resulting in less waste and the elimination of localised pollution. Output water from the ponds can also be a problem, as it becomes nutrient-rich in a way that should not be simply returned to the ocean. To ensure it is as near to pure seawater as possible when it reaches the Coral Sea, the waste is filtered, then discharged through a purpose-planted mangrove system, enabling a second stage of filtration. It's an investment not only in the environment, but also in the business's commercial longevity. THE PRESIDENT'S MEDAL The RAS of NSW President's Medal recognises excellence in Australian produce. The 'best of the best' food and beverages from the Sydney Royal shows are nominated for the President's Medal. Finalists undergo a triple bottom line audit to assess social, economic and environmental impacts - making the President's Medal the most prestigious in the country. Find out more about the  President's medal in this recent article   ED HALMAGYI'S PAN-ROASTED COBIA WITH GARDEN PEAS AND OLIVES RECIPE
Two Blues Sauvignon Blanc 2014
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