Disclaimer: Winston attended the Taste by Appointment event at Saint Crispin as a guest of Grey Goose Australia and f4 Consulting
Andy Wren is the Victorian Grey Goose Ambassador, also the guy who made me the delicious citrus cocktail after the lunch. Side note: Andy was wearing a very nice looking timepiece that day that I really wanted for myself too hah.
Joe McCanta is the Global Grey Goose Ambassador that flew in all the way from London just to host us. An exceptional character. Full of charisma and passion in the way that he speaks, it was a pleasure getting to chat with him that day. Joe flies all around the world to various events to spread the word and goodness of Grey Goose. I want his job. Livin' the dream, I say.
Meet James aka "Dub Dub"
Dub Dub is the Australian Grey Goose Ambassador and also another great chap that we got to meet that day. Not everyday we got to taste truffle infused vodka and the Dubmeister was the man behind it all. He told us that his house smelled like truffle for days, I wasn't sure what he was complaining about =)
"Le Fizz" Cocktail by Joe McCanta
Grey Goose vodka served chilled with St Germain elderflower liqueur, freshly squeezed lime juice and soda water
AMUSE BOUCHE PLATE
Bannockburn chicken, golden raisin jam
Hapuka ceviche, lime, coriander
Ocean trout, blood orange endive, cucumber
Mint and Bitters cocktail that we each created and personalised to our liking at the table...
Wagyu beef cheek and rump, miso eggplant, fricasse of mushrooms, parkesan gel and soil
Grey Goose Martini A La Truffe Maison
Grey Goose vodka stirred with Noilly Prat dry vermouth washed with black truffle butter and plum vinegar
Parfait of hazelnuts, caramelised pear, crispy phyllo pastry, almond gel
Another shot of the beautiful masterpiece...
Now that we've explored our own tastebuds and preferences, we made our way to the bar once again after the meal to have more cocktails again.
This time, there were an array of various ingredients with distinct flavours for people to use if they choose
Andy creating a cocktail based on my flavour profile of choice: Sour!
Almost there... Exciting!
The finished product!
I love citrus in drinks and desserts... Delicious stuff
The boys doing a bit of a taste test... Love this shot of them!
Group photo with Joe, Prue (from Bacardi Lion), Mum (who was in town and joined me for the event) and some new friends that I made that day =)
Photo taken from my Instagram: @winceeee
Blogging is such a fun hobby for me, always giving me opportunities to do certain things, try new places and meet different people. That said, I've admittedly been rather MIA for a while now. For the past few months, I've been feeling so knackered almost everyday that the last thing I want is to rush to get somewhere after work (or on weekends) and then commit to spending hours after that to write up a blog post on the event. I would if I could. Although, I wouldn't mind if it's a casual drop in to a restaurant with my friends or family (because I catchup with them for a meal anyway) but going to events just takes so much more effort. This has definitely made me very selective about how I spend my free time.
Fortunately, once in a while I'd get an invite to something that really, really grabs my attention. This invitation to the Taste by Appointment event, hosted by Grey Goose Australia at Saint Crispin was honestly one of them. An email that really caught my stood out from the rest IMO. Why????
First, it so happened that Grey Goose has actually been my favourite vodka to drink by far for so long, no joke. I've had so much great memories of Grey Goose over the years. Next, I've also actually been meaning to try Saint Crispin for a while now too but never found the opportunity to go. I've heard so many great things about the food there and it's definitely a restaurant that's got many people talking. As if the the stars weren't aligned enough, I was actually taking a very, very rare day off that very same day to run some errands as I was going to be flying overseas the next day. I couldn't go if I were at work because it was a Friday afternoon! Such a coincidence because I NEVER take day offs! Quite the self confessed workaholic. In my mind, I was thinking, "That's it! This is honestly the PERFECT event for me I can't be more excited. I'm there." In fact, I actually felt quite grateful getting the invite to Taste by Appointment because I realised after that they were very, very selective about who to extend the invitations to. The fact that my Mum happened to be in town and I could take her along was just the cherry on the cake too.
Let me just say that the whole event was fantastic from start to finish. I've been to my fair share and don't say this lightly. They chose a fantastic setting, hosts were gracious and lovely people, program was actually very interactive, educational and enjoyable for everyone. Had a great time and so did everyone there.
Taste by Appointment is an event put together to help people discover and understand their own taste buds by exploring all the elements of taste (salty, sour, bitter, sweet and umami) by using various ingredients highlighted through food and cocktails. It was great. As I suspected, I do have an inclination towards salty foods and sour drinks/desserts.
We started off the afternoon by having a light, refreshing cocktail by Joe called "Le Fizz", it was great. Also got to spend a bit of time chatting and hanging out with Joe and Prue (from Bacardi Lion, the parent company of Grey Goose). Fun. Then, we made our way to the lunch in the dining hall next door. Tasting, touching, learning first hand with Joe explaining the theory and processes of taste to us every step of the way.
The meal was great. The 3 different flavours were definitely accentuated in the amuse bouche by the carefully selected ingredients. I really enjoyed the chicken terrine. Next, the wagyu main course was just perfection and bang full of flavour. So many different flavours coming together in harmony with great execution and precision. Finally, I must say that even though I am typically not a dessert person but that parfait in phyllo pastry was definitely the dish of the day. Everyone's eyes lit up as soon as they took their first bite. Everything just worked on the plate. Visually stunning too. I sincerely hope that this parfait is part of the permanent menu because I'd like to come back to have this again. Have I mentioned that we had 3 or 4 cocktails with our meal too? I lost count at this stage.
After that, we made our way to the bar in the adjacent room once again for more drinks. Now that everyone got to know their taste buds better, all we had to do was tell either of the 3 awesome mixologists there that day (Joe, Andy and Dub Dub) what they were so they could custom make a cocktail just for us. What joy and privilege. Andy was responsible for my citrus cocktail with a slightly sweet note and it was great. Couldn't get enough of it.
Overall, I cannot begin to describe how much I enjoyed that afternoon. Many great laughs and conversations were had. Food was great, people were lovely. Not to mention, the drinks.......... There was a LOT of it. Let's just say that by the end of that afternoon, I was reminded once again why Grey Goose is still, hands down, my favourite vodka to drink. The quality is second to none and it is really evident. Also, the best thing about it is how smooth and resilient the vodka is. We must have had them in at least 8 different cocktails all up and the possibilities of what you can do with them are endless. I've gone through a beer phase, then a wine phase and now, I think I am slowly converting to a cocktail phase thanks to this event.
Thank you once again to Grey Goose Australia and Saint Crispin for being such amazing hosts and also f4 Consulting for getting in touch about the event. It was truly a pleasure.