Neil McGuigan, chief winemaker of McGuigan Wines, the fourth largest global wine brand in the UK, has celebrated the launch of the new Founder’s Series in Belfast with TV Presenter and Chef John Torode.
The dynamic duo treated 100 of the drinks industry’s finest to the ultimate food and wine pairing experience at the Ulster Museum on Thursday 5th May. Taking guests on a culinary masterclass, John and Neil matched the perfect McGuigan wine to a delectable four course meal.
On the wine list was the McGuigan Founder’s Series, this premium, limited production wine range is currently available in on and off trade outlets across Northern Ireland.
The McGuigan Founder’s Series champions three of Australia’s great styles and wine-making regions – Barossa Valley Shiraz, Coonawarra Cabernet Sauvignon and Adelaide Hills Chardonnay – which in turn pay homage to the label’s founder, Brian McGuigan.
To celebrate the launch, TV Presenter and Chef John Torode has also developed bespoke recipes designed to match with each of the Founder’s Series wines.
Neil McGuigan, Chief Winemaker for McGuigan Wines, said: “With the McGuigan Founder’s Series we have created a trio of champion wines from three of the best wine-making regions in Australia, and we’ve selected the parcels of fruit that best exhibit the wines’ individuality and character of their respective regions.
“When paired with John’s fantastic recipes, each of these wines truly delivers an exceptional flavour experience.”
The recipes demonstrate John’s ability to think outside the food and wine pairing box. The Shiraz is matched with a delicious Barbecued Lamb Cutlet and Ricotta Salad, to complement the wine’s rich and heavy fruit-lead flavours. Unusually for a red wine, the Cabernet Sauvignon has been paired with a Seared Sea Bream with Spring Onion Mash Potato in a lemon Butter Sauce with capers. Finally, the Chardonnay is a perfect accompaniment to rich dishes, such as a Grilled Duck Salad with Smokey Bacon and Pea Salad.
Also featuring on the evening was a limited edition Adelaide Hills Pinot Noir Rosé, MT Rosé, crafted by the wine maker and the chef. The Rosé steers away from the rich and intense flavours associated with Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon varieties and instead offers crisp, zesty, dry flavours produced by the Pinot Noir grape which additionally lends a beautiful cherry blossom pink colour to the wine.
Neil McGuigan, said: “It all began with an idea we had two years ago, which led us to create our first great wine together – a classic Hunter Valley Semillon. This whet our appetites to create a second instalment in the MT collaborations range, which is a delicious Pinot Noir Rosé. It’s uniquely balanced to suit a broad range of dishes – perfect for a chef such as John.”
John Torode added: “Neil and I took a chance with this rosé and we’re thrilled with the result; the colour and flavour of the wine is superb. I’ll be pairing a bottle with my Grilled Squid with Rocket Salad recipe, which I created to match the wine.”
Sourced from the cooler vineyards of the Adelaide Hills, the MT Pinot Noir Rosé is refreshing and bright, with crunchy blueberry notes on the finish.
Both the Founder’s Series and The Pinot Noir Rosé, 2016, is available now to purchase.
For further information, please contact Lyn Sheridan or Finola Guinnane on firstname.lastname@example.org or 02890 663000
Notes to Editors:
McGuigan wines started in 1880 in the Hunter Valley, Australia where Owen McGuigan laid the foundations for the McGuigan family’s legacy that has seen them become one of the most awarded wineries in the world.
Officially established in 1992, the McGuigan name is synonymous with Australian winemaking. Quality, consistency, value and innovation are the hallmark of the McGuigan brand. Four generations of the McGuigan family have made wine their life demonstrating a deep commitment and passion for Australian wine. This energy, drive and uncompromising dedication to craft the finest Australian wines is reflected in McGuigan Wines international success.
Tasting Notes –Founder’s series
The Founder’s Series Shiraz is a classic Barossa Valley Shiraz, fruit-driven with ripe mulberry and plum characters. The integration of oak results in subtle vanilla and spice flavour, with the wine showing structured but soft tannins that create a more complex flavour.
The Cabernet Sauvignon is a product of grapes from the Coonawarra wine region, an area that remains one of Australia’s most prized regions. The rich blackcurrant and dark berry character is complemented by distinct eucalyptus and earthy notes, making the Cabernet Sauvignon a balanced and approachable wine.
The Adelaide Hills Chardonnay is a modern Chardonnay with lemon, honey and stone fruit notes. The cool climate of the Adelaide Hills helps create a wine that has a fresh and zingy palate with intense fruit that is balanced from the wine’s maturation in oak.
L-R – Neil McGuigan, Martin McAuley, United Wine Merchants and John Torode