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6 Waiheke Weekender
Bob's mother was proud of her English kitchen and was an enthu-
siastic cook. With her Elizabeth David home cookery books about
European cuisines and traditional British dishes, she was forever
asking Bob to 'pass that', 'stir this' or 'light the Aga please'.
He recalls sitting in the kitchen next to its warm bulk, drinking
milky coffee and reading words from the daily paper with her at age
fve.When Bob was growing up in post World War II Britain, his
father regularly came home from his veterinary practice with gifts
of game from local people in lieu of payment, so eating well began
young -- and has continued throughout his colourful life.
Bob and his late wife Dianne had been living in Sydney for 11
years when they made the decision to return to New Zealand to be
closer to family. Bob's mum had always collected New Zealand
Heralds under the seat by the phone and every couple of weeks
would send them across. It was in one of these papers they saw a
four-line ad about the sale of a liquor store on Waiheke. Dianne had
childhood memories of the island so they walked away from their
corporate careers and few over to take a look. Six weeks later, Bob
was behind the counter at what was then the Top of the Hill liquor
A few years on, and with the advent of beer in supermarkets and
the changing face of liquor licensing, he fgured he could either
nurture the business in the face of change or sell up. He decided
to sell and a week later it was sold and Bob was onto his next
A keen foodie, he went into partnership with Mike and Mel
Claridge to open Taste Waiheke, a restaurant offering an eclectic
mix of Pacifc rim dishes with a French infuence on the site in
Artworks Indian restaurant Adjaz now occupies. While he had no
experience working in the hospitality industry he used to eat out
four to fve times a week so he felt he was well qualifed from a
customer's perspective. "While some people eat to stay alive, I
stay alive to eat," he laughs.
In 1994, having worked alongside jazz musician David
Paquette at many of the island's famous jazz festivals feeding the
troops, he joined David in a more offcial capacity as his logis-
tics manager and spent nearly a decade helping to organise the
annual music events.
With a passion for wine, he has also enjoyed a long relation-
ship with Mudbrick's tasting room that continues today.
Bob has hunted with rife in hand, landing a wild pig, and
enjoys the incredible favours of game including venison, pork
and trout. He recalls days when he dived for many mouthwater-
ing seafood dinners. These days, he admits he prefers a short
stroll to the butcher.
Risotto is an Italian rice dish cooked in stock to a creamy
consistency. The broth may be meat, fsh, or vegetable-based.
Classic risotto contains chicken, parmesan cheese, butter and
onion and is one of the most common ways of cooking rice in Italy.
Risotto variations can be made using many kinds of vegetable,
meat, fsh, seafood, legumes, wine and cheese and Bob loves trans-
porting favours into a risotto context. “The best I ever tasted was of
porcini and gorgonzola with veal cutlets in a Swiss restaurant."
While he used to follow recipes religiously, as his confdence
has grown so too has his experimentation. One of his own favourite
recipes uses roughly carved pheasant that has been heavily barded
with bacon and roasted. He serves it alongside a risotto with port and
sherry and served with a secret ingredient, Raz cherries (dried and
soaked in sherry) that he quarters and ficks through the risotto on
serving, creating bursts of fruity sweetness.
His recipe this week is a simple autumn risotto with wild mush-
Risotto with mushrooms
1 big brown onion
2 or 3 large cloves of garlic
A dozen or so large brown mushrooms
Half a handful of fresh chopped tarragon
A big pot of good chicken stock with a generous glass of
Risotto variations can be made using many kinds of vegetable, meat, fsh, seafood, legumes, wine and cheese and Bob relishes in transporting
different favours into each risotto. Cook’s Tip: The longer the onions sweat, the sweeter they become.
The risotto guy
Bob Scott is an avid wine collector and longtime
photographer. He is currently president of the
Waiheke Photographic Collective with an exhibition
on show from 8 June at TOI Gallery in Oneroa. But
his main claim to fame, around the dinner table at
least, is his excellence in making risotto.
Quality Meats ~ Free Range Chicken
Gluten Free Sausages ~ Pork Pies.
Meats for BBQs ~ Roasts ~ Slow cooking
We have (or can order)...
Venison ~ Pheasant ~ Rabbit
Guinea fowl ~ Quail ~ Wild boar
102 Oceanview Road, Oneroa • Ph 372 8798
We'd love to MEAT you!
Come in and browse or call to order
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