The Firefly Pool & Restaurant at the Pavilions Resort was the setting for the 2nd annual New Zealand Wine and Food Showcase. The stunning, sparkling swimming pool and relaxing ambience was the perfect backdrop for us to sample the dazzling variety of beautifully produced Kiwi wine and food available for us here in Phuket.
"We were delighted with the turnout and response to our now annual event, bringing together industry professionals to experience New Zealand's incredible cuisine prepared under the watchful eye of our Kiwi Chef Rey Ardonia, we look forward to new surprises in our 2020 edition." said Conor O'Leary, GM at The Pavilions Phuket.
We were treated to a feast of flavours prepared by Chef Rey and his team, presented in the style of a farmer's market. And as you may imagine, New Zealand lamb was at the forefront of the ingredients demonstrating the passion and skills of the South Pacific islanders. Delicious BBQ sirloin lamb skewers topped with horopito bearnaise sauce and 6hr braised lamb shank potato top pie were an instant hit with the 160 guests. Still, my favourite was a delicious pickled beetroot with minted ricotta, smoked New Zealand lamb and wild herbs. Those with a sweet tooth were not left out either and were drawn to the smoking mountain waterfall display, layered in a seductive selection of mouth-watering cakes that were irresistible. To finish off, a collection of New Zealand ice creams, perfect for cleansing the palate between wine tastings.
A plethora of wines were on offer for our tasting pleasure. Chief among them the world-renowned New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc. Elegant, crisp and refreshing, the perfect partner for a Phuket sunset. Of the reds, my personal favourite is the Pinot Noir grape - smooth, silky and a great all-round match for any island dinner. But due to the many different microclimates in New Zealand, they produce many other wine varieties as well. Chardonnay, Riesling, Cabernet Sauvignon and Pinot Gris, to name a few. I urge you, the next time you are out for dinner or enjoying a hotel stay, search the wine list for the Kiwis and start your own South Pacific wine adventure.
And as if all this wasn't enough, throughout the evening we were treated to music from NZ Idol finalist Jessie Cassin, whose beautiful voice ensured that this evening was a feast for all the senses.
"As a fellow Kiwi, it was a joy to indulge in some home comforts. We would like to thank our sponsors and suppliers, who without, we would not be able to create an experience like this for everyone, thanks to IWS, BB&B, Wine Pro, Global Wines & More, Beervana, Food Guru, ADM Kitchen, Jogota and New Zealand Natural Ice-cream." said Tim Sargeant, Regional Director of Marketing, Asia, The Pavilions Hotels & Resorts.
This marks the beginning of a series of events coming to the award-winning resort. A new 'Breakfast is the new Brunch' concept on every Sunday started 01 December, 'Schools out' Saturday Brunch on the 14 December, indulgent Christmas Eve dinners, New Year's Eve festivities and the count down to the stroke of midnight all taking place at The Pavilions Phuket.