Simon Kalis, Swinging Bridge Wines Vineyard Manager & Chef shares a few of his favourite things.


Autumn for me is cool mornings and temperate days. I’m looking forward to being outside foraging, hunting, 4-wheel driving or camping in a nearby state forest – I’m definitely an outdoorsman. I’m also a car enthusiast and love tinkering on my collection. To unwind in the evening, I catch up on a few YouTube channels I follow including Mighty Car Mods, B is for build, Rich Rebuilds, Vice Grip Garage and The Car Wizard. They give me inspiration and a good laugh.

When looking for an autumnal wine, you can’t go wrong with a MAW Pinot. This Pinot Noir has freshness and lightness with a touch of spice that makes it a great pairing wine for recipes that feature autumn produce. Think of the taste of autumn a berries, wild mushrooms and game meat whilst sipping on the MAW Pinot. Read on for the perfect autumn recipe: Venison and Pine Mushroom Stroganoff.


Autumn is the best time to hunt and forage, as food from the forest is in abundance and the deer rut means it’s the busiest hunting period of the year. I love getting outside amongst the action. Some of my best memories of growing up are fishing and collecting yabbies on the Ovens River in the northeast Victorian high country and eating the wild blackberries on its banks.


This autumn will be filled with adventures in the beautiful weather and enjoying gathering, cooking, eating and drinking all the expectational produce Autumn in Orange has to offer.

Venison and Pine Mushroom Stroganoff 


Serves 2

  • 1 medium brown onion, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 clove of garlic, peeled and finely sliced
  • 300g venison backstrap or rump, fat and sinews removed, trimmed and sliced into finger-sized pieces
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 250g foraged Saffron milk cap and or Slippery Jack mushrooms wiped clean, torn into bite-sized pieces
  • a bunch of fresh flat-leaf parsley, leaves picked and finely chopped, stalks finely chopped
  • a knob of butter
  • a good splash of MAW pinot
  • zest of 1/2 a lemon
  • 150ml crème fraîche or soured cream
  • a few little gherkins, sliced


Heat a large frying pan on a medium heat and pour in a glug of extra virgin olive oil. Add the onions and garlic and cook for about 10 minutes until softened and golden. Remove from the heat and spoon the onions and garlic out of the pan on to a plate. Keep to one side.

Season the meat well with salt, pepper and paprika. Rub and massage these flavourings into the meat. Place the frying pan back on a high heat and pour in some more olive oil. Add the mushrooms and fry for a few minutes until they start to brown. Then add the meat and fry for a minute or two before adding the parsley stalks (you can do this in two pans or in batches if your pan is not big enough) and the cooked onion and garlic. Toss and add the butter and MAW.

After a couple of minutes of simmering, stir in the lemon zest and all but 1 tablespoon of the crème fraîche and season to taste. Continue simmering for a few minutes. Any longer than this and the meat will toughen up – it doesn’t need long as it’s been cut up so small.

Serve with Pasta or rice. Spoon the remaining crème fraîche over the stroganoff, then sprinkle over the sliced gherkins and parsley leaves.

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