Perfect Pairing at Bask Eumundi

Image source: Photographer Megan Gill

At the heart of any great gathering is connection and this will be on show at the Gilbert Family Wine Lunch at Bask Eumundi for a lovingly-curated long lunch that will showcase the family businesses behind great wines and the freshest, seasonal food. Tony Cox previews what will be a perfect food and wine pairing in a stunning setting.

With winemaking experience going back six generations, Gilbert Family Wines based near Mudgee in New South Wales, draws fruit from three distinct regions that all feature a common thread of elevation, creating wines with a brightness and elegance that comes with altitude.

There is strong collective history and knowledge with father and fifth generation winemaker Simon possessing an intimate knowledge of what the Orange and Mudgee regions can deliver, and family roots dating back to 1839 in South Australia’s Eden Valley.

Now Will, the sixth generation and recently-crowned Young Winemaker of the Year by Gourmet Traveller Wine, is working alongside father Simon crafting wines from Orange, Mudgee and Eden Valley.

Best of all on Friday 1 April 2022, we’ll be opening of few of their best bottles over lunch at Bask Eumundi.

A match made in heaven with Bask dedicated to the art of the long lunch and La Dolce Vita – meaning you go there to enjoy the good life: fine food, wine and time spent conversing and connecting. 

Like the Gilbert generations, Bask Eumundi owners Jess Coolican and Jack Madden want the restaurant to feel like home. Drawing from the interior design skills of Jess and the extensive food knowledge and talent of Jack, Bask is both stylish and a food journey to behold. 

Like all good tales of love, Jack and Jess met while working in the much-loved Bistro C on Hastings Street 14 years ago. Jack then has worked both throughout Australia and the UK, most notably at Edinburgh Castle. 

He further honed his craft working as Sous and Head Chef in some of Melbourne’s best Asian and Seafood restaurants before returning to Noosa about two years ago and working in the kitchen at Sails. 

Meanwhile Jess worked in hospitality for several years in Australia and the UK before studying Interior Architecture & Design in Melbourne. Her work has been featured in award-winning homes and national magazines. 

Bask Eumundi is a culmination of their collective talents in design, food and hospitality.

The four-course menu celebrates local produce and is designed to be enjoyed in four stages: Tempt / Taste / Savour / Linger – to take you on a flavoursome adventure that will be beautifully matched with Gilbert Family wines. 

They include the 2021 Petillant-Naturel Rosé, 2021 Blanc and 2019 Rouge – pretty simple names that communicate effectively what is in the bottle. 

The 2021 Petillant-Naturel (Pet-Nat for the cool kids) Rosé is grown in Mudgee at 520m altitude and is 100% sangiovese. 

Pet-Nat starts life with the same process as Methode Traditionelle but with no disgorgement, therefore no cleaning up of the wine after the second fermentation. As a result it is usually cloudy and can taste a little funkier too.

This effervescent number has watermelon nuances, a textured mid-palate and delicate bead. 

The 2021 Blanc is grown in the Central Ranges and Orange and is a homage to all things Alsace being a blend of Riesling, Pinot Gris and Gewurztraminer. 

Each varietal undergoes different treatments to produce a wine where the primary fruit characters of each are discernible with the respective flavours of citrus, nashi pear and rosewater shining through. 

The use of neutral French oak, warm skin fermentation and amphora for certain parcels adds texture with cool ferments for other parcels maintaining freshness and fruit purity.

The 2019 Rouge consist of fruit from both Orange and Mudgee with shiraz (84%) being the dominant grape with 15% pinot noir and 1% Riesling. 

Designed to emphasise fruit flavours, stalks were removed and a cold soaking of the must utilised with fermentation occurring in neutral vessels, namely old oak and stainless steel. 

Similar neutral vessels were used for maturation prior to bottling to create the resultant textural wine with berry, chocolate and plum flavours.

Gilbert Family Wines have the benefit of six generations of knowledge and experience with the added dynamism of youth and connection to current trends – in other words, the best of both worlds.

Don’t be an April Fool! Grab your ticket to the long lunch at Bask Eumundi to end your week and kick off a new month in the best possible way. 

About the Author /

After 25 years of sniffing, swirling, spitting and slurping various vinous temptations our wine writer has decided that his future lies firmly planted on the consumption and storytelling side. Tony not only still enjoys consulting about wine and other beverages but is now part of the successful Kate Cox Real Estate Team at Reed & Co. Estate Agents.

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