Saturday, 28 August 2010

Boomrock Spanish Fiesta

View from Boomrock
I have really enjoyed all the Wellington on a Plate events I have attended this year. (To quickly recap, Discovering artisan cheese, Cupcakes and cocktails, and Making great patisserie at WelTec.) There were many other appealing festival events on the list but, after careful deliberation, these were the ones I'd chosen and managed to book into. That's where the Twitterverse is so amazing; I was the lucky winner of two tickets to the Boomrock Spanish Fiesta.

My sweetie and I spent an amazing half-day experiencing Boomrock in Spanish-style. After being picked up from the centre of town, we were bused out to Boomrock Lodge, featuring a beautiful view of the west coast of Wellington. Greeted with a glass of Freixenet Cordón Negro, we were handed five more drinks tokens for the rest of the afternoon. (Let's just say that several of our tokens were 'spent' on this bubbly, described as a medium bodied, dry sparkling wine with apple, pear and dry citrus - yum!) The tapas started doing the rounds; they literally melted in our mouths - real taste sensations.

As part of our prize package, we were able to try claybird shooting. I hadn't done this since I was about 7 years old and went with my father to the Chatham Islands gun club. I don't think I hit anything (I probably didn't even shoot by myself), but I'm proud to say that I hit two claybirds yesterday - one with help and the other entirely on my own. Woo hoo!

Our entrées were ready. We took our places at the beautifully set tables and started on a seafood feast. The steamed mussels and Cloudy Bay cockles were absolutely delicious, cooked with tomatoes, sherry, onions and fennel bulb. The other entrée included grilled sardines; I'm not a huge fan of these salty, bony fish so switched back to the mussel dish.

An elegant table setting
The feature dish of the day was our main course, a gigantic seafood paella made by guest chef Ian Hornblow. While we were out shooting claybirds and drinking on the deck, he worked on mixing up the ingredients to create a tasty masterpiece. Cooked to perfection, this was a stunning way to feed a large group.

Making a giant seafood paella
A seafood paella masterpiece
It seemed a shame to break up such a beautiful creation in order to feed the masses.

The recommended accompaniment for the paella was a glass of Torres Gran Vina Sol Chardonnay. Served with lemon, mussels and a king prawn, the flavour was subtle enough to appreciate all of the types of seafood (including crayfish) in the paella. As you can see, the serving size was very generous; regrettably, I couldn't quite finish all of mine. After all, I wanted to leave some room for dessert: churros with a rich chocolate sauce.

Seafood paella is served
We concluded our afternoon of feasting with shots of Baileys on ice then tea and coffee. We had a fantastic afternoon at Boomrock. It is a stunning venue and I see from their website that they host various corporate functions and events. I wonder if I'll be lucky enough to be part of one of these in the future?


Alli said...

What an experience! And you won the tickets on twitter?!

Rosa said...

Wow, that paella looks incredible! And what a fabulous location, too, nothing like a meal with a view.

Kelly said...

I <3 Bookrock. My friends got married there in November last year and it was breathtakingly beautiful and so intimate. We got to do clay bird shooting as well while they were off having photos taken - so cool!

Your event looks tres awesome as well and hurray for winning tix on Twitter!

Kate @ UpsideBackwards said...

Lucky lucky you! What a great prize. Love the photos, too.