The Rees Hotel Queenstown Presents Two Culinary Series Events

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There’s nothing quite like a special dinner at a special venue, and if you happen to be in Queenstown in New Zealand in August or September there are two spectacular culinary events at The Rees Hotel to whet the appetite. If you’re not familiar with the property, The Rees is a luxury resort featuring 60 spacious hotel rooms and 90 luxury one-to-three bedroom apartments, as well as five private, three bedroom, three-and-a-half bathroom Lakeside Residences, all enjoying a stunning location on the banks of Lake Wakatipu.  

A Dinner With Château d'Yquem

The first event, which is scheduled for August 24, 2018, is A Dinner With Château d'Yquem. Guests will enjoy a lineup of wines from the historic and world-renowned Château d'Yquem, along with flavourful fare from The Rees Executive Chef, Ben Batterbury, of the True South Dining room, who has earned numerous awards including HM Magazine's Award for Hotel Chef of the Year 2017 (Australia, New Zealand and the South Pacific). Château d'Yquem was once referred to by the novelist Frederic Dard as “the drink of the gods”, and it has a history which spans an impressive 400 years. It once belonged to the King of England during the Middle Ages, it came under French rule in 1453, and was one of the first Western wines to be introduced to Japan. In 1790, Thomas Jefferson ordered thirty dozen bottles of Yquem for George Washington and himself and in the 1980s, a French astronaut packed some small bottles of Yquem with him on a mission to outer space.  

Château d'Yquem's wine growing environment in Sauternes combines a unique set of climatic and geological conditions which gives Yquem rich, well-balanced, and complex flavours that improve with age. The taste also stays on the palate for an exceptionally long time giving a rare, prolonged pleasure. Starting out at 6:30pm with welcome drinks, the Dinner With Château d'Yquem begins with an aperitif of Champagne Taittinger, followed by a four course dinner, with each course accompanied by a specific wine. They include Château 'Y' d'Yquem Sauternes 2017 (Sauvignon/Semillon), Château d'Yquem Sauternes 2016, Château d'Yquem Sauternes 2011 and 2003, and with the final cheese course, Château d'Yquem Sauternes 1997. This spectacular event costs NZ $265.00 per person, and places are extremely limited.

Felton Road

The second event, on September 28, 2018, showcases the Central Otago favourite, Felton Road, also with the sophisticated cuisine of True South’s Chef Batterbury. Felton Road was founded in Bannockburn Central Otago in 1992 by Stewart Elms, who identified the region as being an ideal site for the growing and production of premium wine. Since 2002 the vineyards have been managed organically and bio-dynamically, and the wineries are led by owner Nigel Greening and winemaker Blair Walter, whose devotion to quality winemaking have helped earn Felton Road ninth place in The World’s Most Admired Wine Brands 2018 by Drinks International. The winery is best known for its prestigious Central Otago Pinot Noir – along with its Chardonnay and Riesling whites. 

Beginning at 6:30pm with welcome drinks, the dinner, which will be hosted by Mark Rose and Blair Walter, will allow guests to savour an impressive lineup of wines including the 2018 Riesling Bannockburn, 2017 Chardonnay Bannockburn, 2013 Chardonnay Block 2, 2017 Pinot Noir Bannockburn, 2014 Pinot Noir Cornish Point, and 2009 Pinot Noir Block 5. These wines will be served with a delicious selection of dishes cooked by True South's Chef Ben Batterbury. The event costs NZ $135.00 per person, with the option to stay the night in a Lakeview Hotel Room thanks to a special package costing NZ $335.00 per person (minimum two persons). This great value package includes a one-night stay in a Lakeview Hotel Room, two tickets to the Felton Road dinner, and a cooked breakfast for two in True South Dining. Additional bed and breakfast rates are NZ $355.00 per room, per night. For bookings email: or visit Eventbrite.



Joanna Hall