Blog

Three reasons to visit Auckland this June

Posted by No 1 Family Estate on May 22, 2019

It may be almost June but that’s no excuse to hibernate with a dose of the mid-winter blues. It’s time to celebrate the season. So why not plan a trip to the city?

Here are three reasons to visit Auckland this June.

Your winter wardrobe needs an update:

Whether you choose the bright young designer stars at Britomart, head to the bijou boutiques in Ponsonby, or simply scour the fashion scene at Smith & Caughey’s, you’re sure to find that must-have piece for your winter wardrobe.

Your taste buds need a workout:

There’s no shortage of fabulous eateries in Auckland. To discover some top tips from our lovely lady, Virginie, take a peek at this article from our blog archives. Virginie shares her recommendations for breakfast, lunch and dinner! You won’t go hungry.

Winetopia is back:

Just in case you needed one final excuse to visit the city… On 14th and 15th June the Greatest Celebration of New Zealand wine is returning to Auckland for its fourth year!

Winetopia is your opportunity to try hundreds of lovingly crafted wines, be inspired by famous faces and learn from wine gurus. And of course, No. 1 Family Estate will be there. Join us for some sparkling sensations. We’ll be tasting some of our most popular wines. We can’t wait to see you!

Buy your tickets HERE.

How to celebrate Mother's Day in Marlborough

Posted by No 1 Family Estate on May 02, 2019

Sunday May 12th is Mother’s Day, the day where you will no doubt aim to delight and surprise the family member who is always there to nurture and cherish your family! This might be your actual Mum, or it could be your Nana, your sister, your wife or partner, or maybe even your Dad.

We’re really lucky in Marlborough that there are so many wonderful places to visit and celebrate this special day!

Here are five of our top five picks:

  • A Bountiful Brunch – Head to Saveur Café, Bistro & Pâtisserie for a perfect brunch. If you’re lucky it might be warm enough to sit on the terrace and watch the world float by. Otherwise, escape inside to the warmth of the fireplace.
  • A Light Lunch – Visit our good friends at Herzog and enjoy a little something from the fabulous Bistro. Busy and vibrant yet utterly unfussy and comfortable.
  • Choose Chocolate – Who doesn’t love a little chocolate treat. Why not call in at the fabulous Makana to pick up a box of handmade treats for Mum.
  • Favourite Flicks – There’s nothing better than a lazy Sunday afternoon at the movies. Head to our fabulous EVENT Cinema in Blenheim.
  • Something Sparkling – The No.1 Family Estate Cellar Door will be open from 11:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. so do call by and taste some of our wines. You may even want to treat Mum to a bottle to take home!

Remember, there is still time to enter our Mother’s Day promotion. We’re giving away a Mother's Day Goodie Bucket. It’s chock full with No.1 Family Estate branded products, (and a sparkling treat), valued at $270 (NZ). You can nominate the person you think is the Best Mum in the World to win it. All you have to do to enter is fill out a simple form.

Enter HERE!

We're getting fizzical and you can too!

Posted by No 1 Family Estate on April 15, 2019

It's that time of year again. The weather is warming up in London so it's time to Get Fizzical with Three Wine Men!

The UK’s three most entertaining wine experts – Oz Clarke, Tim Atkin MW and Olly Smith – have, once again, searched the globe for their favourite Champagnes and sparkling wines and we're on the list!

Let's Get Fizzical takes place on Thursday, 9th May at East Wintergarden, Canary Wharf in London. Doors open at 6:00 p.m.

Oz, Tim and Olly will be mingling with everyone, so this is your chance to chat with them about the wonderful wines on offer, and you'll be able to taste as many as you wish.

There will be some sparkling masterclasses on the night, (extra charges apply), and a sabrage demonstration. Tickets are very limited for this special tasting and sold out last year so if you love bubbles buy yours HERE.

At No.1 Family Estate we also have two pairs of tickets to give away to two lucky winners. ENTER THE DRAW HERE.

Good luck, we'll see you there!

 

An Easter Feast

Posted by No 1 Family Estate on April 09, 2019

Easter is just around the corner, and while it may have become synonymous with chocolate overload, it’s also a time to gather family and friends for a Sunday feast of roast lamb!

This Easter why not add a little French flavour to your roast lamb by cooking it alongside boulangère potatoes. Lighter and healthier than Dauphinois, these potatoes are just as impressive. Your guests will be sure to exclaim ‘ooh la la’! These potatoes are named boulangère because in France they were given to the local baker to cook slowly in a bread oven.

Garlic & herb roast lamb on boulangère potatoes

Ingredients:

  • Leg of lamb (2kg should serve eight guests)
  • 4 garlic cloves, sliced
  • Fresh sprigs of rosemary & thyme
  • 2 kg potatoes
  • 2 onions
  • 600 ml light stock
  • 50 gm butter

 

Method:

  1. Heat your oven to 190C/170C fan. Pierce the lamb with the point of a sharp knife and stuff each opening with a slice of garlic and small rosemary sprigs, scatter with thyme and season well with salt and black pepper. Place in your roasting dish and cover with foil.
  2. Peel and thinly slice your potatoes and place in a large ovenproof dish. Slice the onions and add toss these with the potatoes, any remaining slices of garlic and a good scattering of your fresh herbs.
  3. Heat the stock and butter together, then pour over the potatoes. Cover the dish with foil and bake in the oven with the lamb for 1 hr.
  4. Uncover your potatoes, place the lamb on top and continue to roast uncovered for a further 45 minutes.

(View the original recipe on the BBC Good Food website)

Serve with a chilled bottle of No. 1 Rosé. Bon Appétit!

Featured Restaurant - The Blue Breeze Inn, Auckland

Posted by No 1 Family Estate on March 19, 2019

Whenever we head to Auckland we like to drop into The Blue Breeze Inn. It's like an island break right in the heart of Auckland’s Ponsonby Road. We caught up with the restaurant's group wine buyer and sommelier, Sonja Anich, so, we could share with you a little more about the bustling Blue Breeze Inn.

The Blue Breeze Inn - Photo Credit: Nick Reed

When did the doors to the Blue Breeze Inn first open?

The Blue Breeze Inn opened with a fabulous flourish in May 2013.

How does the Blue Breeze Inn combine Kiwi innovation with traditional Chinese food?

That’s the style of our Chef Che Barrington. You take one born-and-bred kiwi boy from Nelson, send him backpacking through the backwaters of Asia to crash with families and hang out in their kitchens - then he comes back and starts experimenting, re-creating those flavours with our South-Pacific produce.

Can you tell us a little about where you source your produce from?

Chef Che heads to the Avondale markets at the crack of dawn every Sunday to get the hard-to-find ingredients from boutique growers. There are lots of herbs and veggies you get in Chinese kitchens that Asian communities in Auckland grow at home, but that still aren’t coming through the Western-style suppliers.

What makes the Blue Breeze Inn unique in its style and service?

Well, we're biased, aren't we!?  I think that magic at The Blue Breeze Inn comes from it being a fun, enjoyable place to work. Food that blows your socks off and a place you feel welcome... That's an unbeatable night out.

Can you tell us more about Coconut Sundays?

We do a slightly different menu every Sunday with a special focus on our Peking Duck Banquet.  It's a brilliant dish for a big table of friends to share and chat for a Sunday chill session.

If you had to describe The Blue Breeze Inn in three words, what would these be?

Fabulicious. Fun. Unique.

No.1 Assemble features on your the wine list, can you share a few suggestions from your menu of dishes that it would pair with beautifully?

Our fave matches are the BBQ pork bun, tiger prawn dumplings, spicy chicken dumplings, kingfish sashimi, stir-fried prawns, steamed tuatua and stir-fried market fish. Oh... And the legendary cured salmon salad is a stunner of a match!

 

Open that bottle night

Posted by No 1 Family Estate on February 19, 2019

At No.1 Family Estate we think that all too often sparkling wine is reserved for special occasions.

We prefer to live life as Madame Lily Bollinger did, she is famous for saying, “I drink Champagne when I'm happy and when I'm sad. Sometimes I drink it when I'm alone. When I have company I consider it obligatory. I trifle with it if I'm not hungry and drink it when I am. Otherwise, I never touch it, unless I'm thirsty.”

So, with that in mind, it’s good to know that we’re not alone. In fact, the last Saturday in February marks the annual celebration of ‘Open That Bottle Night’. An occasion dedicated to ensuring that those bottles of fine wine that you have tucked away are sipped and enjoyed. Find out more HERE.

With that in mind, we thought we’d share three ways to help you celebrate ‘Open That Bottle Night’ in style!

1.     Do it with bubbles – We know that you all have a bottle of something deliciously sparkling stashed away for ‘that’ occasion. Well February 23rd is the night! And if you don’t have a bottle of bubbles to hand, then now is the perfect time to select your favourite No.1 Family Estate wine. Browse them all HERE.

2.     Do it with friends – We think every day should be considered a day to make memories with your nearest and dearest. But if you needed an excuse to get together then look no further than ‘Open That Bottle Night’.

3.     Do it with food – Just as we don’t think that bubbles should be reserved solely for special occasions. Neither, do we believe that your glass of sparkling wine should be reserved simply as an aperitif, indeed all of our wines are food pairing champions. So, simply decide whether you wish to serve your No.1 bubbles with canapes, a delicious buffet or a sit-down meal, then check our blog archives for serving suggestions!

Featured Restaurant - Arbour Blenheim

Posted by No 1 Family Estate on February 04, 2019

We're so thrilled to have wonderful associations with restaurants all around New Zealand, and even overseas. But there's always something rather special about having a fabulous award-winning restaurant right on our very doorstep. Arbour in Blenheim is exactly that and in this week's post, we caught up with Arbour's co-owner, Liz Buttimore, to find out exactly what makes Arbour such a highly regarded, stand out restaurant.

Arbour - Greenshell mussels, yuzu butter, baby gems and beach herbs

Why is Blenheim, Marlborough the perfect location for Arbour?

I feel like we have found our ‘people’. A set menu restaurant on a country road in a sparsely populated region without a nearby city shouldn’t exist. But it does and in fact, it has become an integral part of the region’s food and wine scene. We love the wineries that surround us and nurture us. They encourage us to continue pushing and improving through both their drive to be better each year and through their sales journeys. They eat in the best restaurants in the world and we don’t want them to come home and feel ‘stuck’ eating with us. We change parts of our menu several times a week to ensure that we can use all the local produce coming through each season and we spend a lot of time with our suppliers coming up with different consumer products and ideas. By buying local we are not compromised for quality in any way. We are working with what we believe to be some of the best products available. We don’t feel like we are ‘helping’ local suppliers by using them, we feel that their product gives us a true taste of our area, a strong identity and creates a strong Marlborough story for our diners.

Can you tell me a little bit about the dining style at the restaurant?

Bradley and I are both from formal, structured dining environments. However, Arbour’s unique style came from an experience of dining in our ‘dream’ restaurant years ago. We saved up for a long time, donned a suit and cocktail dress and feeling like ducks out of water (or chefs out of their Birkenstocks) proceeded to have the worst dining experience. So bad we don’t really remember the food, which was incredibly good. From the moment we entered the doors to the moment we left we were made to feel like we were not welcome or good enough. Quite ironic when you are spending $800 for two and you know the wage the waiters are on. We don’t want to make anyone feel down about themselves or be the catalyst for an argument on the drive home. We want our customer's taste buds to be happy, relaxed or excited so that they remember our food, our names and think about us fondly in the future. I would describe our style as contemporary New Zealand food using local Marlborough produce with service that makes you feel as warm as a hug from Nana.

What sort of foods can guests expect to enjoy? And how do these change seasonally?

We use mostly local produce so our food changes often to make the most of what is coming through. We use Premium Game for different wild meats depending on the season, Cranky Goat Cheese (both their winter and summer milk cheeses), Windsong plums and blueberries in the peak of summer, Flaxbourne lamb for six months spring to Autumn, Uncle Joes nuts all year round and their green walnuts in December, Marlborough Garlic Company's shallots, garlic and black garlic, Caythorpe cherries in December, Mr Burn’s and Old Road Estate Figs from February to April and Cloudy Bay Clams for nine months of the year. We use many different local olive oils, nut oils and even flour and salt, forage and keep notes on when our wild produce is in season such as the pink peppercorns, fennel pollen, wild cherry plums, apricots, different leaves, nuts and coastal and pasture herbs.

What makes Arbour unique in its style and service?

People know that we care. We care about our product and how we showcase it and we genuinely care about every guests dining experience. We want them to have a lovely evening and to go away thinking fond thoughts about us. We know many have to save for a special dinner and it really is humbling when they decide to spend those savings here.

No.1 Assemble features on your wine list, can you share a few suggestions from your menu or the produce you serve that it would pair with beautifully?

We love to serve No.1 Assemble with our chicken and black garlic parfait, blueberries, lemon gel and sourdough crisps or with steamed Cloudy Bay clams, miso butter, sea spinach and kawa kawa.  

Valentine's Day Inspiration

Posted by No 1 Family Estate on January 21, 2019

It’s that time of year again… Just over three weeks until that most romantic of day arrives, so we wanted to remind you how easy it is to let us play Cupid. Spoil your No.1 love with bubbles this year.

How to celebrate a classic love story - If your romance ticks all the boxes of a classic love story we recommend No. 1 Cuvée. No.1 Cuvée was the first wine produced by No.1 Family Estate. It is renowned throughout New Zealand and is winner of multiple International Trophies, Gold Medals and Five Star Awards since its release.

How to celebrate your holiday romance - If you're trying to rekindle those lazy, hazy days of youthful summers then raise a glass of No 1 Rosé. This wine celebrates the superb climate of Marlborough, delicate salmon-pink with a mass of tiny bubbles, the wine offers a seamless balance of subtle cherry and almond hints combined with a fresh acidity. Dry, yet fresh and elegant, this wine leaves a lasting impression of opulence and splendour. It was also the recent winner of the Sea Breeze Trophy at the World’s Finest Glass of Bubbly Awards 2018 - "When you taste this wine you will imagine yourself standing on a beach and tasting those tiny sea drops in the air."

How to celebrate your new relationship - If you’re in the throes of a new romance, why not gift a bottle of No. 1 Assemblé? Just like your love it’s fresh and inviting with sophisticated characters and intense flavours.

For the person who lights up your life - Gift Cuvée Adele. It has a stunning new box that lights up when opened, illuminating the beautiful Swarovski crystals that adorn the spectacular bottle. Yvonne Lorkin calls it 'Mindbendingly Delicious' and because it was crafted by Daniel as a proud tribute to Adele, she also coins it 'A love story in a bottle'. Watch Yvonne's Insta video showcasing the beautiful box here.

Order your wine HERE

We’re so thrilled to play Cupid we’re even running a Facebook promotion at the moment. It’s easy to enter! Simply LIKE US then enter the draw on our Facebook Page and you could win a $100 Voucher from your choice of six fabulous restaurants.

  • Blue Breeze - Auckland
  • Ortega - Wellington
  • Highfield - Blenheim
  • Harrys - Nelson
  • Bracken Restaurant - Dunedin
  • Kamana Restaurant - Queenstown
     

ENTER HERE
 

Happy New Year - We're getting 'Out & About'

Posted by No 1 Family Estate on January 08, 2019

Happy New Year to you from us! We hope you have enjoyed a fabulous festive season, with plenty of bubbles!

We're starting 2019 by getting 'out & about'... Here are a couple of upcoming events where you can find us.

Chardonnay & Sparkling Symposium 2019

At the end of January, we'll be heading to the 2019 Chardonnay and Sparking Symposium in glorious Gisborne. This trade event plays host to many international attendees, who will participate in a full day Sparkling and Chardonnay Masterclass, showcasing the best examples of both varieties.

Find out more about the event HERE.

Marlborough Wine & Food Festival 2019

New Zealand’s best and longest-running wine and food festival, The Marlborough Wine & Food Festival is just a month away! The Marlborough Wine & Food Festival is as much part of a Marlborough summer, as ripening vines, dry sunny days, evening strolls and dining outside with close friends and family.

We’re proud of our longstanding history with this iconic Marlborough event, in fact, we were involved in the very first Marlborough Wine & Food Festival in the 1980s.

Since then we have continued to put the fizz into the festival, with regular attendance and themed stands from Putting on the Ritz to a stand that marked the bicentennial of the French Revolution, guillotine and all! The theme for this year's stand is still under wraps, but we hope you'll join us on 9th February at this iconic event to discover what we've put together for 2019!

Find out more about the event HERE.

 

 

Festive feasts and bountiful bubbles!

Posted by No 1 Family Estate on December 10, 2018

Christmas is just around the corner, so it's time to think about festive feasts and bountiful bubbles!

Glasses of No. 1 Family Estate sparkling wines are raised to toast the festive season, all around the world. But, of course, the way we enjoy our bubbles in the southern hemisphere where we are enjoying warm summer weather, will differ to the traditions of our friends in cooler climates. But that's not to say you can't go bubbles all the way, wherever you are in the world!

A No.1 Family Estate 'Family' Christmas

In true French tradition, our family appreciates a gastronomic extravaganza on the 24th December, rather than the 25th December, when we visit the legendary gourmet restaurant, belonging to our good friends and neighbours Hans & Therese Herzog.

After the formal feast of many courses on Christmas Eve, our Christmas Day dining is a more casual affair. We begin the day on the deck overlooking the vineyard and mountains. We open the best vintage bubbles with croissants, strawberries clotted cream and pain au chocolat.

This Friwi (French x Kiwi) tradition begins around 10:00 a.m. with No.1 Cuvée. The bubbles last throughout the day. Later we pair scampi and crayfish with No.1 Assemblé. Afterwards, we'll tuck into turducken with No.1 Rosé, followed by a stupendous cheese board. When we can make room we'll enjoy dessert, a lemon and elderflower posset (citrus flavours pair well with our bubbles) and a good old English trifle.

For our friends in cooler climates

If you're celebrating in the northern hemisphere serve No.1 Cuvée as an aperitif with canapes. This readies the stomach for the coming onslaught of Christmas fare. Then serve No.1 Rosé with your traditional turkey and trimmings. Our vintage wines like Cuvée Virginie or Cuvée Adele are perfect with cheese and dessert. If you're in the U.K. you can buy online through Amathus.

Make it a Magnum

If you're feeding a crowd, serve wine that suits! Nothing sets a festive atmosphere like a giant bottle being opened and poured!

  • Investing in a Magnum ensures that when your guests, friends and family drink their first glass from the same bottle, your celebration becomes a truly shared experience.
  • It is often easier serving wines at a dinner party or function from a Magnum.
  • You can expect to get around 12 glasses of wine from a Magnum.
  • Don’t forget that a Magnum makes a fabulous gift for somebody special.

 

However, you celebrate the festive season, we wish you a truly sparkling Christmas and a New Year that overflows with happiness!