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Food Challenge National Award Back to Home Turf

Thursday 26 August 2004

West Coast Restaurant Brings Monteith’s Wild Food Challenge National Award Back to Home Turf

On Wednesday night at a special dinner and awards ceremony for all eight Regional Winners of the Monteith’s Wild Food Challenge, The Karamea Village Hotel from the Northern West Coast of the South Island was named the National Winner.

Their winning entry comprised of an entrée called, “Baiting amongst the stumps” – Karamea whitebait, simmered with a coating of lemongrass and mint dressing, rested in a seaweed basket. Beer Match: Monteith’s Original. The main meal was called “Bunny Brawn” – sliced wild rabbit brawn with Karamea feijoa chutney, served with West Coast greens. Beer Match: Monteith’s Golden.

Now in its seventh year, the Monteith’s Wild Food Challenge has been propelling the Monteith’s beer brand into restaurants and onto diners’ tables with great success.

The aim of the Monteith’s Wild Food Challenge is to promote the concept of matching exquisite beers with exciting cuisine, while highlighting the talents of the chef and the ambience of the restaurant.

To enter, each restaurant must create a unique two course meal, utilising a selection of wild foods, complemented by beer from New Zealand’s finest craft brewery, the Monteith’s Brewing Company.

National Convenor of Judges, Kerry Tyack said the food from the Karamea Village Hotel was not only fabulous, but the dishes let the beer speak for itself.

“At the end of the day, that’s what pushed Karamea Village Hotel out in front, because all of the regional winners were exceptional. The standard was a million times better than last year,” said Kerry.

The Monteith’s Wild Food Challenge started out as a local beer and food matching competition in the café district of Ponsonby, Auckland. This year Queenstown was added to the list of competing restaurants as was the West Coast in 2002. Other regions include Auckland, Hamilton, Tauranga, Wellington, Christchurch and Dunedin.

The Karamea Village Hotel has been a strong contender and enthusiastic supporter of the Monteith’s Wild Food Challenge ever since it started in their area two years ago. Husband and wife team Kevin and Diana Storer won the regional award for Best Spirit back in 2002 and then went on to claim the title of Regional Winner in 2003.

As the National Award winner for the 2004 Monteith’s Wild Food Challenge, Kevin and Diana receive a $20,000 prize package made up of cash, Monteith’s product and merchandise, and advertising.

Jacqui Jones, Monteith’s brand manager says, “It’s a truly fantastic competition and successful event for the hospitality industry. The amount of energy and talent the chefs put in to carefully matching the food profiles with the Monteith’s beer’s flavours and characteristics is inspiring”.

“The competition goes from strength to strength every year, Monteith’s will continue to build on the Monteith’s Wild Food Challenge, taking care to keep it relevant and challenging to the hospitality sector,” she said.


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