If you're looking for something extra special to celebrate something extra special head to QT for The Art of Tasting. Four chefs from the QT hotels across Australia, including Canberra's own Josh Smith-Thirkell from Capital Bar and Grill, have created dishes matched with Maison Perrier-Jouët's suite of enigmatic cuvées.
Try Smith-Thirkell's mushroom crosata made with locally sourced Majestic Mushrooms. Other dishes include a wood-roasted marron with smoked tomato, basil and lemon butter, (if you're lucky and not squeamish, they'll bring them to the table live, before heading back into the kitchen), duck a l'orange or a sublime apple crumble souffle. All dishes are paired with the Perrier-Jouët Grand Brut in the set price. For something extra special, lash out and buy a bottle from the range, from $125. There's also a cool little video series starring Melissa Leong, who's just been named as one of the new MasterChef judges, which goes behind the scenes of each dish. qthotelsandresorts.com
Meet the makers
More than 20 of Australia's and New Zealand's best winemakers are coming to Canberra, serving up their top drops at Cellarmasters' Meet the Makers event. Tickets include a glass of champagne on arrival, unlimited tastings over 60 different wines as well as canapés and a grazing table. Hunter Valley star Gwyn Olsen, who was named Gourmet Traveller's Young Winemaker of the Year, will be there alongside celebrity chef and winemaker Stefano de Pieri and former Penfolds chief winemaker John Duval.
Guests can also sample the most awarded chardonnay in Tasmania's history (Riversdale Estate's Crater Chardonnay), and try the wine that won James Halliday's Grenache Challenge last year (Blood Brother Republic BBR McLaren Vale Grenache).
QT Canberra, Friday, November 1, from 6pm. Tickets $45. cellarmasters.com.au/events
Taste of Canberra dinner
During October, the Southern Cross Club is celebrating all the fabulous produce from Canberra and the surrounding region. The feature dish, the "Local Mixed Grill", combines locally grown prime char-grilled sirloin steak, lamb chop, grilled Murrumbateman flat mushroom, fried Majura Valley free-range egg, crispy Pialligo Estate bacon, and fresh locally made sausage. This local feast is available across the Southern Cross Club venues for just $29.50 for members, served with grilled tomato, thick cut chips, house made gravy and a petite side salad. To make it a "complete local" add a schooner of Capital Brewing's Evil Eye Red IPA or a glass of Lake George chardonnay or shiraz, for just $6.50. The focus on great local region produce will culminate with the "Taste of Canberra" dinner on Friday, November 1, five courses with matched wines from Lake George winery.
Penny at Night
Penny University is opening the doors late again for another divine dinner. The Nights at Penny series has been a great success, a chance for the kitchen team to showcase their skills and quality produce beyond the daytime menu. This dinner will celebrate native Australian produce featuring Coffs Harbour kingfish, native Australian spiced vegetables kangaroo fillet with Davidson plum and a macadamia nut pannacotta for dessert. Tickets are priced at $85 for four courses, or $115 with paired wines for each course. Bookings on 61621500.