Moving down to Margaret River I was pretty eager to discover any and all of the food experiences the region had to offer but also knowing it may not be quite as exciting or varied, as the hundreds of options in Perth. Finding out about a brewery, showcasing a pop up winery, offering an Indonesian inspired degustation menu with matching wines for $80 a head was exactly what I was hoping for.
Black Brewing Co found its home in the old Duckstein Brewery/Saracen Winery building on Caves Rd, and a very grand and impressive building it is. With outside deck seating overlooking the beautiful lake and fountain, this place also makes for a perfect lunch venue. The degustation offering is just on Friday nights and in the evening the venue takes on a more intimate, romantic feel with the seating just being in the winery space. On our visit it was still cold so with the fire going and candles lit it no longer felt like a brewery. I did wish they had some more lighting up the driveway and car park as from the road you couldn’t really tell if the place was open and finding your way was a little tricky, no moon that night.
I had completely lucked out when a friend was able to join me for the last dinner offering matching Les Sauvages wines, love it when last minute plans involve amazing food and wine. Our waitress was really lovely, informative and accommodating when it came to any variations. I’m really hopeless with chilli and knew some of the dishes were going to be a bit hot for me but she was great in working out if any slight changes needed to be made.
The first course had arrived and we were both excited to get stuck into it. Wild mushroom gyoza with ginger kimchi. This came in an aromatic broth bursting with flavour. Simple, delicate and tasty gyoza, perfectly paired with the Les Sauvages Rosé. One of the best Rosé’s I’ve had, nicely balanced, not to sweet, not too dry.
Next course, ocean trout with miso and carrot emulsion. Melt in your mouth ocean trout, pickled vegetables, crunchy capers and an emulsion that just brought it all together. This was paired with Les Sauvages Vermentino which really complemented all the flavours. This dish was gone all too quickly to remember any finer details and we were ready for the next one.
Third course was szechuan duck with pomegranate reduction and wanton crisps. Perfectly cooked duck with all the flavours and textures you’d want, crispy, creamy, sweet and salty with a bit of spice. Another great wine pairing with the Les Sauvages Chardonnay and another delicious wine.
Last savoury course, Balinese beef ribs with pickled watermelon. We were looking forward to this one and as I had guessed this one had the most heat for me but with all the incredible flavours bursting from the plate it was a dish I was going to finish no matter what. The meat was so tender it fell off the bone, with so much flavour it transported you straight to Bali. The pickled watermelon was a nice element and I love the addition of bean sprouts in these sorts of dishes, incorporating some freshness to balance out the richness. This dish was paired with the Les Sauvages Syrah which was a great combo although I was glad at this point that it was the last of the wine. Although it would have been nice to have a dessert wine, 4 glasses was plenty.
Dessert was lemongrass panna cotta with saffron tuille and blood orange syrup. This looked so pretty on the plate, great presentation. The flavours of the blood orange and lemongrass were divine and made for a lovely, light and citrusy dessert, perfect way to end a 5 course meal. The panna cotta sadly didn’t have the wobble I had hoped for, a bit too set for my liking but still had great flavour and texture. The tuille gave it a fabulous structural element and was as yummy as it looked.
This was a fabulous 5 course meal, great value for money, some of the friendliest service going around, lovely setting and fantastic wines. I can’t wait to get back here for lunch and sit out in some glorious sunshine on the deck, as well as getting back for another Friday night degustation very soon. With an amazing spot in the middle of a beautiful wine region, Black Brewing Co is ideal for a romantic Friday night date night or a more casual lunch date for anyone who enjoys good food.