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Australia Gala Dinner

Perth, July 14, 2021

Truffle Dinner celebrating Bastille Day

" The menu had been specifically prepared to reflect the truffle season in full flow some three hours away south of Perth "

To celebrate Bastille Day (the name given in English-speaking countries to France’s National Day), a “Black-Tie” truffle-themed dinner was arranged at the Ritz Carlton on July 14th. Although it was an unusually cold and wet winter’s evening the atmosphere was heart-warming and enthralling.

The dedicated truffle menu was devised by Chef Danny Fong accompanied by wines, described by Simone Furlong, from the highly-revered Leeuwin Estate in Margaret River.

The menu had been specifically prepared to reflect the truffle season in full flow some three hours away south of Perth. Here, locally grown truffles have become highly prized, increasingly more aromatic and abundant following several seasons of abundant harvests.

To celebrate the event a “Happy July 14th” toast was given in French by Ken Gotfried. He entertained us all with a brief summary of his association over 20 years with the Chaîne in Western Australia.

The Ritz Carlton has become a firm favourite of ours. However, it was our first event in the Ritz Carlton’s specialised venue: the dedicated, expansive Bell Tower Room - ideal for the occasion with its open grill on view.

The evening started in the nearby Songbird Lounge where three unanimously-praised canapes were served:
- Blue Swimmer crab, watermelon radish and wasabi tobiko
- Chicken liver mousse, Port jelly and cornichon tartelette
- Semi-dried beetroot, goats curd, savoury granola

It was impossible to determine a favourite. All were exceptional, especially when enhanced by Leeuwin Estate 2019 Sparkling Brut, a crafted blend of Pinot Noir and Sauvignon Blanc, which was beautifully received.

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Smoked Geraldton kingfish
Jerusalem artichoke, truffle dressing
Accompanying our first course was the first of Leeuwin Estate’s wines from its premier Art Series range. A dedicated work of Australian art is specially selected for each wine and vintage. The latest 2020 Art Series Sauvignon Blanc was chosen and started the evening’s long-lasting appeal.

Twice cooked hen’s egg
leek and truffle cream, cured pork
This sensational course was served with the recently-released 2018 Art Series Chardonnay, a wine which is often credited as being one of Australia’s and the world’s best Chardonnays, frequently attaining 99 points. The wine is kept for 11 months in French oak and we were truly blessed and inspired by this wine’s presence.

Rose Malle Wagyu beef
chestnut mushrooms, truffled potato puree
Another highly-regarded Art Series wine was the partner - in the form of the 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon, a grape which is much acclaimed in and suited to the Margaret River region.

Sweet potato custard
truffle ice-cream, mandarin
To complement our unique dessert was Leeuwin Estate’s 2020 Rosé wine. A wonderful finale to the most prized array of wines selected.

To conclude the evening Bailli Thurston Saulsman, together with Bailliage officers, thanked Chef Danny. All the members of staff were then invited to be presented to attendees for their creativity and attention.

Vive la Chaîne! Vive la France!

Keith Swailes
Vice-Chargé de Presse

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