Bob Campbell profile

What’s your favourite wine this spring?

Spring is Sauvignon Blanc season. Wines from the latest 2007 vintage are flooding onto the market and the news is all good. I’ve been mightily impressed by the quality of most of the wines tasted so far. My favourite is Astrolabe 2007 Awatere Valley Sauvignon Blanc – an absolutely brilliant wine. I bought two cases. If you want some, be quick, I predict it will be all sold by Christmas.

Is there a meal to compliment it?

Most seafoods make a good match. My favourite at this time of the year is seared scallops served with fresh asparagus spears – it’s an absolute knockout!

Can you share any upcoming wine and food trends?

Sherry is beginning to come out of the liquor cupboard and take its rightful place on the table. It’s suddenly becoming quite trendy to serve chilled Fino sherry with tapas – a great thing to do in the summer season. My favourite Fino is Hidalgo La Gitane. Once opened Fino sherry should be stored in the fridge and consumed within a week as it has a low (for sherry) alcohol of around 16% vol.

You holidayed in Fiji – were there any culinary highlights?

Surprisingly, there were two culinary highlights. I’ve got a weakness for lamb curry Fijian style. The curry used is unlike any other Indian curry I’ve tasted and I love it. The other is Kokoda – raw fish marinated in lemon juice and mixed with coconut milk. It was served in half a coconut balanced on a ring of pineapple (which I also ate).

Have you dragged the barbecue out yet?

I never put it away and generally use it all winter. However it’s gathering dust since we bought a large double oven with all the bells (including a barbecue hot plate). Life will never be the same again.

First published in Taste Magazine NZ – Oct 2007.

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