This was a truly lovely pairing. We had a feeling it would work, but with miso and the oily mackerel it could have been a challenge. Hunter Valley Semillon seems to be one of those wines that “wine people” in the know loves, but that struggles to get a wider audience. Never mind, it’s great stuff and is a brilliant companion with fish and East Asian flavours – it doesn’t always have to be Riesling….we promise.
Today’s Wine Pairing: Hunter Valley Semillon x Miso Mackerel
Semillon’s home is in France, and Bordeaux specifically, but it has found a unique expression in Hunter Valley, just north of Sydney, Australia. Here the grapes are picked quite early to avoid late-Summer rains, and the resulting wines are typically low in alcohol (often 11% or below).
While they don’t have a huge amount of complexity when young, with a little bit of age these wines blossom into real aromatic beauties: fleshy, ripe citrus fruits with plenty of zippy acidity and a nice hint of toasted almonds. These wines are often aged at the estate for a good few years before release. In the case of our Mount Pleasant ‘Elizabeth’ Semillon 2009, it had been ten years in fact. And it was a real cracker!
The acidity was the ideal foil for the oily mackerel and would be an absolutely spot-on partner for any fish or seafood for that matter. And as for the miso component: no problem! The roast almond flavours and fleshy, creamy texture on the palate were great with the sweet-but-earthy miso. And with only 11% alcohol, it was a perfect mid-week wine. What’s not to like? Our advice: seek out some Hunter Valley Semillon. Now!