Most photos on this post are of Western Australia—shot by winemaker Robyn Drayton. Robyn sold her renowned wine business in the Hunter Valley (a capital for the Semillon grape within New South Wales) and has since then spent well over a year traveling around Australia in her car/camper combination. The location from where she recently took these photos is shown on the map below. We met briefly a decade ago when I interviewed her for my book Vino Voices—Wine, Work, Life.
These photos were taken a LONG way from the Margaret River wine region—about 1,300 miles, or 2,100 kilometers (roughly the same as the distance between the Santa Ynez wine country of Santa Barbara, California and the Okanagan Valley wine region of British Columbia, Canada). I’m featuring the photos because they are from the western coast of Australia, and because they look quite stunning.
The food and wine featured below are from Margaret River, also in Western Australia.
The dish below is from McHenry Hohnen Vintners, located in Margaret River, Australia.
The recipe contributor—Marketing Coordinator Lilian Kurys-Romer—wrote:
“Margaret River is a hot spot for food and wine, and we are lucky enough to be quite obsessed with both! Our backyard is the quintessence of enjoying the outdoors sustainably; we’d go for a dive for some fresh endemic crayfish (western rock lobster), dhufish, and line caught squid, and pick tomatoes and fresh herbs from the back garden, heading inside to throw together a very relaxed pasta marinara.“
Seafood Pasta Marinara.
The original recipe, contributed by McHenry Hohnen Vintners, calls for dhufish fillets, squid and crayfish. However I substituted a mixture of fish and shellfish available from the market in France.
Basically you cook a pot of pasta, such as linguini. Then heat oil and butter in a fry pan over medium heat and add garlic, zested lemon, chili, salt and pepper and cook for a minute or two before adding the seafood and cooking. You then add the pasta, fresh garden tomatoes and herbs.
About cooking this recipe, Kurys-Romer wrote:
“Don’t forget to enjoy reasonable gulps of Chardonnay throughout the process.”
My own notes from cooking mentioned this recipe as being a ‘crisp and crunchy delight, relatively easy to prepare.’
I took these photos below a few years ago, when first cooking this dish.
Match this dish with a crisp, white wine. McHenry Hohnen recommended their Single Vineyard Burnside Chardonnay.
“In the South West Western Australia summers you just can’t beat fresh seafood with our chardonnay. The wine is as pure as eating a bunch of grapes direct from the vine, with intriguing texture and natural yeasts and French barrique maturation and secondary characteristics of crème caramel are lifted with fresh mineral acidity. It’s an elegant example of power and grace…“
Robyn’s coastal shots from Western Australia are below, and include her dog Porto. (She retains copyright for photos.)