Trendy SA bubbles and mushroom pairings perfect for Spring

With life returning to some normality, we can celebrate homegrown, trendy mushrooms with homegrown trendy South African sparkling wines.

Below are some innovative and delicious pairings. What better way to celebrate Spring 2020…

Recipes courtesy of The South African Mushroom Farmers’ Association

Avondale Armilla MCC paired with pickled baby button mushrooms


250g baby button mushrooms
250ml white wine vinegar
250ml water
*Handful mixed herbs and spices of your choice
3 Tbsp sugar
1 Tbsp salt
100g chevin style goat’s cheese
100g crème fraîche
100g asparagus, peeled into ribbons
Olive oil
Red wine vinegar
Salt & pepper
Toasted baguette slices for serving


In a  small pot combine vinegar, water, salt & sugar.

*At this point you can add any robust herbs like thyme, rosemary or oregano. And a few teaspoons of spices like mustard seeds, peppercorns or chilli flakes.

Bring the mixture to a simmer. Slice the baby buttons in half and place in a large glass jar. Pour over the hot pickling liquid and seal the jar. Make ahead of time so the mushrooms can cool before serving.

Whisk the goat’s cheese and crème fraîche together until light and fluffy. Spread over the warm toasted baguette.

Dress the asparagus ribbons with a little olive oil, vinegar, salt and pepper. Place a few onto each bruschetta. Remove baby buttons from the jar, drain off the pickling liquid and liberally dress the bruschetta with them. Sprinkle over some salt and chilli flakes and serve.

Pair this recipe with Avondale Armilla Blanc de Blanc MCC.

Made from organically-grown Chardonnay grapes Armilla has had the time to develop an exceptional character and impressive elegance. It is lively on the palate with hints of citrus which plays well with the rich and creamy goat’s cheese and tart pickled mushrooms. The bright citrus flavours lighten the tangy goat’s cheese and enhance the fresh asparagus. On the nose you can enjoy baked apples while hints of quince and hazelnuts on the palate play with the savoury bruschetta exceptionally well.

Gabrielskloof Madame Lucy’s MCC paired with mini mushroom Wellingtons


8 large Portobello mushrooms
1 Tbsp olive oil
Few thyme sprigs, leaves picked
400g baby spinach
100g feta cheese
2 shallots, finely chopped
4 garlic cloves, grated
4 sheets ready-rolled puff pastry
1 egg, beaten salt & pepper


Preheat oven to 200°C. Arrange portabellos on a rack on top of a baking tray (domed side up) and brush each one with oil. Scatter over thyme and season. Roast for 5-7min until tender when tested with a knife. Drain on kitchen paper and let cool.

In a large frying pan add a drizzle of olive oil and cook garlic and shallots for a few minutes.  Add in the spinach and cook down. Season well. Scoop mixture onto a chopping board and roughly chop up the spinach. Allow to cool. Add the feta and mix well.

Line a large baking tray with baking paper. On a lightly floured surface cut sheets of pastry into 4 equal squares. Divide spinach mixture between 8 of the squares. Add a Portobello mushroom (domed side up) and press down. Brush pastry borders with beaten egg and put lids on, carefully pushing down around the sides. Press edges to seal, then crimp with a fork. Trim edges to neaten, and brush all over with egg. Cut a hole on top of each. Transfer to baking trays and chill for 20min.

Turn up oven to 220°C. Cook wellingtons for 25min until golden. Serve with a green salad and some fresh thyme.

Pair this recipe with Gabrielskloof Madame Lucy’s MCC.

This dish paired with this MCC will be a massive hit on any festive table. The mini wellingtons are indulgent, buttery and rich while the sleek lines of the wine’s acidity help lighten the dish. This MCC has citrus, pear and white peach flavours on the nose with a delicate mousse and very fine bubbles. The wine’s fruity notes deepen the effects of the salty cheese and buttery pastry while it’s bright acidity adds a lot of freshness to this umami sensation.

Krone RD paired with portobello mushrooms in a lemony ricotta puff pastry tart


1 sheet ready-rolled puff pastry
250g smooth ricotta cheese
1 lemon, zested & juiced
1 handful fresh oregano leaves, chopped
6 large portabello mushrooms
Olive oil
Salt & pepper
Baby greens / rocket for serving


Place the sheet of puff pastry on a tray lined with baking paper and score a border 2cm in from the edge all the way round. Prick the pastry centre using a fork. Leave to rest in the fridge for about an hour. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 220˚C with an empty baking sheet in it to get hot.

When the oven reaches temperature carefully lift up the puff pastry using the baking paper and place it onto the hot tray.  Blind bake the puff pastry sheet until golden brown all over. About 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool. Press down the centre of the pastry so you are left with a puffy border.

Whisk the ricotta, lemon zest, lemon juice and oregano together. Season well with salt and pepper.

Spread the mixture into the centre of the tart. Top with portabello mushrooms and season them well. Toss the baby greens in a little olive oil & lemon juice and olive oil and scatter them over the tart before serving.

Pair this recipe with Krone RD MCC

RD stands for recently disgorged. Krone RD spends many years maturing on the lees which allows exceptional richness and complexity to develop in this wine. The wine is intense and stands up to any robust meal. The lemon in the ricotta plays beautifully with the notes of honey on the palate. Notes of caramel can be experienced on the nose and on the palate which work ever so well with sweet and savoury pairings. The intense umami of the mushrooms is complemented by the bright acidity of the wine and keeps you wanting more of both.

Le Lude Brut MCC paired with mixed mushroom stuffing


1 loaf sourdough bread
6 tablespoons butter
2 medium leeks, thinly sliced
3 medium celery stalks, thinly sliced
700g  mixed mushrooms,thinly sliced
1/4 cup finely chopped sage
2 tablespoons fresh thyme
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/4 cup finely chopped parsley
2 1/2 cups chicken stock
3 large eggs


The night before cut the sourdough into one inch cubes and set out on a rack overnight to dry out. Alternatively you can toast them for a few minutes in the oven unit the bread is dried out (about 5 to 10 min)

Preheat an oven to 180˚C and prepare a baking dish with butter.

In a large pan melt 4 tbsp of butter and sauté the leeks and celery until they soften. Add in the mixed mushrooms and continue to cook until nearly all the liquid from the mushrooms has evaporated (20 to 25 min). Add in the sage, thyme and pepper and mix well.

Transfer mushrooms to a large bowl and add in the dried bread cubes and parsley. Toss gently to combine.

In a bowl combine the stock and eggs and mix well. Pour the mixture over the mushrooms and bread and mix gently. Transfer the mix into prepared baking dish and top with 2 tbsp of butter. Cover with a buttered tin foil lid and bake for 20 min at 180˚C.

After 20 min remove the tinfoil and bake for an additional 15 to 20 min or until the top of the bread has turned golden brown. Remove from oven and top with more fresh thyme.

Pair this recipe with Le Lude Brut MCC.

Imagine crisp bites of ripe pears combined with sweet nougat and toasted almonds. That’s what you’ll taste when you enjoy this exquisite MCC with the toasted, salty and savoury mixed mushroom stuffing. This wine’s nutty flavours and hints of proving dough play the bass note in harmony with the well toasted yeasty sourdough bread. The warm and comforting flavours of the mushrooms are given a lively hint of acidity with this wine pairing and keep this dish bright and exciting.

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