Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Sea & Vines Winter Feast Review

Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Sea & Vines Winter Feast Review
More grenache! Photo: Willunga Wino
Come with me as I share with you the Sea & Vines 2015 happenings at “the oldest McLaren Vale winery still in founding family hands”. One of three events, one recipe and a whole lot of fun I had over McLaren Vale Sea & Vines 2015.
 
 

Come with me as I share with you #KayBrothersWines Italian Winter Feast for @seaandvines

A photo posted by Louise Rhodes @ Willunga Wino (@willungawino) on

  First, the key details.  Mid-Winter, the McLaren Vale turns on it’s stunning vistas, food & wine for 25,000 or so willing participants in the annual Sea & Vines Festival. In 2015, one participating winery was Kay Brothers, and I was lucky enough to attend their “Winter’s Feast in Heritage Surrounds” as a guest of the festival $95pp for three Italian inspired courses, five wines, music and heritage surrounds.  

Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Sea & Vines Winter Feast Review

Lantern lit. Photo: Willunga Wino

  Flickering lanterns and braziers greeted us, as did winemaker Duncan Kennedy, who explained that the Kay Brothers only white wine, the Muscat Blanc, is the same grape used to make the fortified they are so famous for.   

Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Sea & Vines Winter Feast Review

Winemaker Duncan Kennedy. Photo: Willunga Wino

  On, toward the heritage wine cellar building where we would feast tonight.   

Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Sea & Vines Winter Feast Review

1901 Wine Cellar. Photo: Willunga Wino

  Beautiful photos of her past and present were ready in an instagram-ready display.  

Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Sea & Vines Winter Feast Review

Instagram worthy decorations. Photo: Willunga Wino

  Through to the mezzanine we were ushered, with many happy participants already creating a friendly hubub.  Including our table-mates – Becky & Dan from Winey Kids!  

Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Sea & Vines Winter Feast Review

The “Skeleton Floor”. Photo: Willunga Wino

  The stunning wine barrel hall was captured in panorama by Chilli Chocolate Marketing.

 

 

 

 

 

This is the incredible venue of the sold-out Kay Brothers Amery Wines “Winter’s Feast in Heritage Surroundings”, a…

Posted by McLaren Vale Sea & Vines Festival on Saturday, June 6, 2015

 

 

Our places were set with a glimpse of what was to come. Sonya from Dine Catering came and shared with me what my vegetarian option would be, invented by Chef Glenn Carr (former head chef of Auge Restaurant and The Lane Vineyard).

 

Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Sea & Vines Winter Feast Review

Tempting menu. Photo: Willunga Wino

 

Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Muscat Blanc 2013
Well Looky Here

Almost colourless, palest straw.

Sniff Sniff

Gewurztraminer-like nose, super ripe paw paw.

Sip Sip

Soft full mouthfeel nice acid that drops off fast.

 

Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Sea & Vines Winter Feast Review

Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Muscat Blanc. Photo: Willunga Wino

 

While we sipped, the gentle fingerpicking folk style of Cal Williams Jr perfectly set the mood.

 

Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Sea & Vines Winter Feast Review

Cal Williams Jnr band. Photo: Willunga Wino

 

Third generation of the winemaking family, Alice Kay, gave us a little history of the building in which we sat.

Built in 1901 as a barrel store, the mezzanine was originally called “the skeleton floor” due to the precarious nature of it’s beams and gaps.

 

Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Sea & Vines Winter Feast Review

Alice Kay. Photo: Willunga Wino

 

Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Grenache 2014

Well Looky Here

Bright ruby.

Sniff Sniff

Black Forest Cake, blackcurrant and baking spices.

Sip Sip

Still young juicy sour cherry, gently drying tannin and juiciness tingles he end if the tongue

 

Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Sea & Vines Winter Feast Review

More grenache! Photo: Willunga Wino

 

 First course for me was a forest mushroom risotto with cabbage slaw.

It was rich and flavoursome, with little hits of parmesan saltiness.

 

Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Sea & Vines Winter Feast Review

Rich wild mushroom risotto. Photo: Willunga Wino

 

Ravioli with sweet crab and prawn, grilled scallop, and tangy-rich saffron sauce was the non-vegetarian offering.

 

Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Sea & Vines Winter Feast Review

Prawn & crab ravioli with scallop. Photo: Willunga Wino

 

Colin Kay, another of the third generation of the Kays dynasty, shared with us some of the winemaking history of the company.

Originally, only one wine was made, the bulk blend that included currants and was known as “London Red”.  It was the swinging 60’s before Kays crossed over to bottled varietal wines. 

 

Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Sea & Vines Winter Feast Review

Colin Kay. Photo: Willunga Wino

 

Speaking of, it was time to try the next!

 

Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Sea & Vines Winter Feast Review

Kay Brothers Hillside McLaren Vale Shiraz 2011. Photo: Willunga Wino

 

Kay Brothers Hillside McLaren Vale Shiraz 2011

Well Looky Here

Darker in colour than the Mataro.

Sniff Sniff

More fruit prominent than the Mataro, peppery.

Sip Sip

Spicy red fruit. This is a big boy at the moment. It has a contrasting sweetness and strong acid line.  

 

Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Sea & Vines Winter Feast Review

Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Shiraz 2011. Photo: Willunga Wino

 

Also on offer to match with the main course was a fourth wine.

Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Mataro 2011

Well Looky Here

Dark with ruby rim.

Sniff Sniff

Earthy, savoury, restrained. 

Sip Sip

Drinking better than the restrained nose. This is a dark earthy beast. Clean. Well balanced. Not overly tannic. Matches well with the creamy polenta, sweet carrots and similarly earthy mushrooms.

 

Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Sea & Vines Winter Feast Review

Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Mataro 2011 Photo: Willunga Wino

 

For mains, the non-vego’s enjoyed tender, slow cooked beef cheek, with parmesan polenta, chestnut mushrooms and porcini jus.

 

Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Sea & Vines Winter Feast Review

Lamb, Polenta, Chestnut mushrooms. Photo: Willunga Wino

 

Rich, tasty parmesan polenta was topped with heirloom, sweet roasted carrots and chestnut mushrooms for the veggies. 

Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Sea & Vines Winter Feast Review

Semolina polenta, Heirloom carrots, Chestnut mushrooms. Photo: Willunga Wino

 

 Then the moment we had been waiting for, our first taste of the 125th Anniversary Sparkling Shiraz.

Kay Brothers 125th Anniversary McLaren Vale Sparkling Shiraz NV

Well Looky Here

Ruby hued with lovely pink foam.

Sniff Sniff

Redcurrant jam with black pepper.

Sip Sip

Red fruits, black pepper. Nice, medium sized persistent bubbles. Nice clean acid finish.

 

Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Sea & Vines Winter Feast Review

125th Kay Brothers Anniversary Sparkling Shiraz. Photo: Willunga Wino

To match with the sparkling shiraz, and as a sweet finish to the meal, was a spiced red wine poached pear, cored and stuffed with spiced ricotta.

A square of semolina pudding, studded with sultanas was smooth and cakey. 

Spiced cherry sauce and rich dark chocolate finished the truly delicious dish.

 

Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Sea & Vines Winter Feast Review

Poached Pear, Semolina Pudding, Cherry, Chocolate. Photo: Willunga Wino

 

Time for a little stroll.

The anniversary bottles are beautiful, made up of a collage of pictures from the winery’s history.

 

Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Sea & Vines Winter Feast Review

Kay Brothers 125th Anniversary Sparkling Shiraz. Photo: Willunga Wino

 

 On display was the current range, atop sleeping barrels of vintages to come.

 

Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Sea & Vines Winter Feast Review

Line up of legends. Photo: Willunga Wino

 

The Kay’s crest keeps watch. I wonder what the dragon’s key is for?

 

 

Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Sea & Vines Winter Feast Review

Family crest. Photo: Willunga Wino

 

Time for us to leave the happy room behind.

 

Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Sea & Vines Winter Feast Review

Happy, friendly crowd. Photo: Willunga Wino

 

One quick peek below the Skeleton floor on the way out. 

 

Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Sea & Vines Winter Feast Review

Below the skeleton floor. Photo: Willunga Wino

 

 A great night with lovely new and old friends in unique surrounds. Food by Chef Glenn Carr and Dine Catering was delish, and the new sparkling shiraz a winner. 

Wand more Sea & Vines? 

See my Wrap Up on Sea & Vines 2015.

 

 

What are your thoughts on McLaren Vale Sea & Vines 2015? Comment below! 



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Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Sea & Vines Winter Feast Review

Kay Brothers McLaren Vale Sea & Vines Winter Feast Review

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