Ultimate Winery Experiences Australia

Yabbies & Chardonnay - Are you Game?

Fowles Wine, in the Strathbogie Ranges, loves sourcing food from the great outdoors and matching it to their wine. In fact, it was their love of real food - wild meat and home grown veggies - that inspired them to make a range of wines to complement the different texture and intensity of wild meat: Ladies who Shoot their Lunch and Are you Game?

In the video below, responsible hunter and avid wild food and wine man, Matt Fowles, takes us on an adventure to catch and match wild yabbies to their Are you Game? Chardonnay.

The common yabby or Cherax destructor as it's known in scientific circles (an impressive name for a little shrimp!), is a freshwater crustacean that is common to rivers and dams throughout much of Australia. While similar to crawfish and shrimp, yabbies are found exclusively in Australia.

Yabbies vary in colour depending on water clarity and habitat and can range from blue-black or dark brown in clear waters, to light brown, green-brown or beige in the turbid waters where they prefer to live.

Yabbies are delicious and catching them, referred to as 'yabbying', is something that many kids in Australia learn to do. These days, Matt still delights in yabbying and cooking them up with his family.  

Yabbies can be line caught, however up on the Fowles farm dams they set special yabby nets baited with tinned tuna in the early evening and pull them in at daybreak. Before cooking, yabbies need to be purged for 24 hours in fresh water so they can expel any mud and dirt from their system.

Once purged, they must be put to sleep by popping them into the freezer for about an hour. As cold blooded creatures, when the temperature drops to very low levels their metabolism slows right down and they become insensible.

Yabbies should be cooked for around three minutes in boiling water before being refreshed in a bowl of ice water. Once cooked, their tails can be removed, peeled and enjoyed straight away or incorporated into dishes such as pasta. Fowles Wine recommends serving them with a drizzle of dill Buerre Blanc and fresh lemon.

When it comes to food and wine matching, the key to success is not necessarily selecting the colour of the wine, but rather selecting a wine with the right profile to complement the flavour, texture and intensity of the dish. In the case of this dish a number of white wines could work well. However, the lovely lifted stone fruit aromas, fuller bodied palate and fresher acidity of the Fowles Wine Are You Game? Chardonnay best complements the delicate yet creamy nature of Buerre Blanc yabbies.  

Ultimately it comes down to individual taste, so why not try it for yourself? Download the recipe HERE.