Stay in touch with the latest news and happenings at Vasse Felix, in Margaret River and on tour around the world.
This year's Margaret River Gourmet Escape saw us host Chef Ivan Brehm from Michelin Star Singapore Restaurant - Nouri, who collaborated with our very own Brendan Pratt for the Eating at the Crossroads dinner at the Estate. With a playful excitement and undeniable talent, both chefs performed culinary magic in the kitchen of Vasse Felix, whilst demonstrating the concept of crossroads cooking.
Ivan, the Singapore based and former Fat Duck test kitchen chef has studied ingredients, techniques and flavours to develop a cooking style that includes Asian, European and South American influences. As the chef-owner of Nouri, Ivan has explored the crossroads of cooking using his experiences from around the globe. Similarly, Chef Brendan Pratt and the Vasse Felix team studies ingredients, techniques, texture and flavour to best complement the estate’s wines.
The night started with our host and Chief Winemaker, Virginia Willcock, exploring her experience of 'crossroads' - how she and her team study the land and their own practices to make the best wine possible in Margaret River's Wine Paradise. Dinner included six courses, paired with Vasse Felix wines and included dishes curated and designed by both chefs.
Highlights of the night included:
Lamb, kibbeh, roti, eggplant, mint | 1996 Cabernet Sauvignon
Kingfish, honeydew, bone marrow | 2018 Heytesbury Chardonnay
The unparalleled evening set forth the celebration of the crossroads between food and wine in the heart of Margaret River.
What better place is there to launch our new Vasse Felix Summer Classics Cart than the 2019 Margaret River Gourmet Escape! At the centre of the Gourmet Village, our new handcrafted portable bar serving chilled Classic wines on tap made it's debut at the iconic food and wine festival in Margaret River.
Festival-goers were treated to the new release Classic Dry Rosé, as well as our ever-reliable and popular Classic Dry White and Classic Dry Red. The Summer Classics Cart was the perfect conduit to serve and enjoy the easy drinking, incredibly delicious Classic collection.
Couldn't make it to Margaret River Gourmet Escape? The cart will be serving Classics throughout WA this Summer, so keep an eye out for this travelling incarnation of Vasse Felix. More on our Classic Summer here.
Cheers to a Classic Summer!
We are delighted about the recent recognition for the 2018 Chardonnay as 'Best Wine' in Ray Jordan's Top 100 Whites & Sparklings!
"Australia's best white wine for 2019," receiving 95 points, selected from nearly 600 wines from all over Australia. This year marks "one of the most difficult white and sparkling tastings," for Ray Jordan, wine editor of the West Australian, in all of his years of choosing the Top 100 wines.
It was an idyllic vintage in Margaret River and this 2018 Chardonnay is the ultimate representation of Vasse Felix. With over 25 wines from the Margaret River being recognised in the Top 100, we are thrilled to see the consistent quality from this vintage across the entire region.
"Such a good chardonnay from this outstanding vintage. So much depth and poise here with a wonderful expression of all that is good in Margaret River. Grapefruit and lightly toasty oak influences with a savoury minerally finish."
The 2019 Classic Dry White has added to its long-standing reputation as a leading wine for Summer, having been included in the '10 Best Wines Under $20,' in Ray Jordan's Top 100 Whites and Sparkling Wines of 2019.
Selected from over 600 wines from across Australia and New Zealand, Wine Editor of The West Australian described the 2019 Classic Dry White as, "one of the best-known examples of this style."
The Classic Dry White is a Semillon and Sauvignon Blanc blend that has been produced at Vasse Felix since 1987 and is continuing to be recognised for its value, drinkability and quality.
"It's a semillon and sauvignon blanc blend displaying excellent tropical herbaceous fruit characters. Balanced with a long palate lifted with a splash of lemon citrus," Ray continued.
Elevate your Summer seafood game with this simple twist on a classic French sauce - Beurre noisette or Burnt Butter.
Beurre noisette, pronounced burr-nwah-ZET, is a French term for 'brown butter' or literally 'hazelnut butter.' It is a one-ingredient condiment - unsalted butter - cooked in a pan until it turns a golden brown. The resulting butter has a nutty flavour and is added to vegetables, pasta, omelettes or chicken, but most commonly fish and seafood.
"My personal favourite pairing is king prawns, butterflied and roasted over coals, a nice piece of fish or grilled scallops can also benefit from the addition of a burnt butter sauce. Alternatively, adding chopped garlic and a little sage right at the end can create a classic pasta dressing." Chef Brendan Pratt
This recipe uses lemon juice to both stop the cooking process of the milk solids and more importantly, add freshness and balance to an otherwise fatty and rich sauce. The addition of the beach mustard adds a lovely aromatic, mustardy tang to the sauce.
Burnt Butter sauce with beach mustard
200g unsalted butter
2 tbl spoons of chopped beach mustard or 1 tbl spoon of Dijon mustard
1 tsp flaked sea salt
Juice of one lemon
Heat a stainless steel saucepan over a medium heat. Too much heat will burn the butter so start the heat slowly.
Cut butter into tablespoon-sized portions and separate them.
Add the butter to the heated pan.
Using a whisk as the butter melts, swirl the butter so that it cooks evenly.
Swirl the pan occasionally to ensure no butter burns.
The butter will begin to foam after 30 seconds or so. Keep stirring constantly as the butter begins to melt and the proteins brown.
Keep an eye on the colour of the butter - you're looking for a golden brown hue. Once the butter is the correct colour, pour it out of the pan into a large heatproof container. Add the lemon juice, salt and beach mustard (or Dijon) and whisk to combine.
Spoon over your cooked seafood and enjoy!
The original Margaret River Classics are Vasse Felix's ever-reliable, approachable and perfect crowd pleasing wines to accompany you through the festive season.
Ready for a Classic Summer in Perth? Join in our tour of Perth's #Classic outdoor venues and festivals!
Hadiqa | Hibernian Place
November - December 2019
Rooftop Summer Classics... Rosé all day on the Hadiqa rooftop!
Freo Social | Fremantle
October - January 2019
Classic Thursdays... $1 Dumplings + $5 Classic Dry Rosé & Classic Dry White by the glass!
The Common | Margaret River
October - January 2019
Classic Happy Hour... $6 Classic Dry Rosé from 5 - 6pm daily!
Perth Festival | Perth Concert Hall
February 7 - March 1 2020
Partner of the Perth Festival, you can find the entire Classic collection at the Chevron Lighthouse main stage!
Market Grounds | Perth
October - December 2019
Enjoy all three Classics by the glass at the bar or on the patio!
Margaret River Gourmet Escape | Gourmet Village
November 16 - 17 2019
The Classic Cart... Pouring the original Margaret River Classics all weekend long!
Scarborough Beach Bar
Enjoy all three original Margaret River Classics during the month of November.
To find more Vasse Felix stockists, please click here.
A classic Margaret River blend of Semillon and Sauvignon Blanc. This popular, pure-fruit style has been made by Vasse Felix since 1987. It is zesty, fresh and crisp.
A light, dry and refreshing Rosé, made from Margaret River Shiraz. This is a provençal style of Rosé showcasing a textural savoury core while embracing the delicate fruit perfume and succulence of its Shiraz base.
A classic bright, lightly perfumed and succulent Margaret River Shiraz. Shiraz from this region is characterised by its medium weight, delicious structure with sweetness and power, and fine tannin profile providing great length.
October has seen a flurry of accolades for both the Vasse Felix Restaurant and Head Chef Brendan Pratt.
Most recently, the Vasse Felix Restaurant was listed Number 2 in the WA category of Delicious Magazine's Top 100 Restaurants; "Chef Brendan Pratt, who took the reins two years ago, shows his handle on the region and the state's best produce."
The Restaurant was also a Top 10 Finalist in the West Australian Good Food Guide Awards Restaurant of the Year, listed at Number 9! It was fantastic to see that five of the Top 10 were regional WA restaurant, four of which were from the Margaret River Region.
Head Chef Brendan Pratt has just been included in Rob Broadfield's Top 25 Best and Most Influential Chefs in WA; "Brendan Pratt has seamlessly carried on where [Aaron] Carr left off and is delivering dishes of equal, if not better, beauty and elegance. Pratt is a chef auteur with just a touch of mad scientist in him. His food continues the Vasse Felix style of clean, austere plates that are mildly Japanese in flavour and technique... Like a good haiku, Pratt’s food is sublimely simple, has purity of flavour, complexity, punch and elegance."
Last but certainly not least, the Vasse Felix Restaurant received a Chef Hat (15/20) in the recent Australian Good Food Guide Awards; "Everything from the hexagonal dining room that maximises views over vines to chef Brendan Pratt's fire-tickled, local-ingredient-loving menu is built to highlight the winery's stars: cabernet sauvignon and chardonnays."
Restaurant bookings are essential, please click here for more information.
Vasse Felix has once again been named one of USA Magazine Wine & Spirits’ ‘Top 100 Wineries.’
The list includes fellow Margaret River winery, Leeuwin Estate and South Australia’s Penfolds.
Each year, the magazine creates this list based on wineries who have the most consistent performance and highest scores throughout the year. Their panel and critics blind taste more than 11,000 wines and present only the most distinctive selections to their readers.
In celebration of this honour, Vasse Felix will be participating in the Wine & Spirits 16th Annual Top 100 Tasting events being held in San Francisco in October, then New York City on 14 January, 2020.
More information here.
2015 TOM CULLITY
"Tom Cullity planted the first vines at Vasse Felix in 1967, starting with cabernet sauvignon and malbec at his eight-acre parcel near Caves Road in Wilyabrup. Virginia Willcock and her team now tend to the descendants of those vines, producing this top selection under Cullity’s name. It’s a complex and elegant Margaret River classic, refreshing for all its supple richness. There’s a note of anise to the spicy scent, a cool sense of tilled earth in the dark tannins. Associate Editor Rachel Del Rocco Terrazas commented on how long the flavors last: ‘All the freshness and tannins work together and leave my mouth super happy.'"
94 points, Wine & Spirits
Chardonnay. It's the Queen of Margaret River and on Friday 6 September we explored 96 unfinished barrel samples from the 2019 vintage, generously shared by 49 Margaret River producers.
With high natural acid, incredible weight and power, and pure fruit clarity, 2019 is looking to be an incredible vintage for Chardonnay. The barrel samples were already showing more flesh around the frame in comparison to previous vintages with similar cool conditions, providing an excellent platform from which to craft beautiful Margaret River wine.
The vintage discussion was led by Steve Martin of Stella Bella and Tim Lovett of Leeuwin Estate who shared their viticulture and wine making perspective.
The 2019 vintage was a season for expert viticulture where patience, preparation, lateral thinking and hard work were rewarded, so hats off to the various viti teams who pulled us through!
On a side note - the latest Halliday Wine Companion listed 21 Margaret River Chardonnays (out of 43 total) in the Best of the Best by variety, an incredible result and testament to the quality of this region's Chardonnay.
It is no secret that Margaret River is a Wine Paradise, the ideal environment for growing exceptional Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay, yet we were thrilled to see this reflected in the recent 2020 Halliday Wine Companion Best of the Best by Variety awards. ⠀
Out of the 43 Chardonnays that scored 97 points or above this year, 21 were from Margaret River. And in the Cabernet Sauvignon and Family categories? 23 Margaret River Cabernets out of 55 in total - more then any other region - made the cut.⠀
An incredible result and testament to the quality of this region's core varieties. Keep reading to see Halliday's reviews of the Vasse Felix Wine Family.
A noble blend of 78% cabernet, 20% malbec and a dollop of petit verdot, conferring ample richness and an authoritive spine; saline, maritime acidity and detailed grape tannins, moreish and ripe, attesting to an extraction regime of courage and confidence. While this full-bodied wine demands patience, one can already detect cassis, lead, cedar, graphite, a herbal potpurri, a swab of black olive and a bay leaf lingering across cedar oak beams.
2017 Heytesbury Chardonnay
Consistently at the forefront of Australian Chardonnay, attention to detail as important for the smallest detail as the largest. Texture is as important as flavour, although it can’t always be possible to deconstruct the two.
2016 Cabernet Sauvignon
86% cabernet, 11% malbec, 3% petit verdot. This is reflective of the stride in the top at this estate: less of everything and with that, more drinkability; more energy; finer bones. Textbook: currant, bouquet garni, graphite, pencil lead and dried cigar. Mid-weighted, highly savoury, classically styled and eminently gulpable. But this will age very well. Your choice.
This takes the Vasse Felix chardonnay trio into serious wine territory. All the aspects are here: barrel fermentation in French oak, neither too much new, nor too little; the picking regime / decisions are integral to the vinification, the aim being to avoid the need to acidify; time in barrel is also an important consideration with an increasing practice to finish maturation in tank.
2017 Filius Chardonnay
2016 Filius Cabernet Sauvignon
2018 Sauvignon Blanc Semillon
Special Value Rating
2018 Classic Dry White
Special Value Rating
2017 Classic Dry Red
Special Value Rating