In late 2018 Mansfield winemaker Ros Ritchie opened a new cellar door within the historic Magnolia House – a late 1800s American Victorian-era kit home that was shipped to Melbourne as ballast, and on to the High Country via steam train by then owner Harry Amor of the Mansfield Courier. Constructed in 1908, the venue today is a fascinating place for sampling Ros’ premium cool climate wines. Complimenting these European varietals Essentials’ Megan Chalmers has put together a collection of French recipes to indulge in. Stay tuned this winter and spring for more recipes like this easy to prepare and delicious Salad Lyonnaise.

Historic Magnolia House, Mansfield - now home to Ros Ritchie Wines
Historic Magnolia House, Mansfield – now home to Ros Ritchie Wines

Salad Lyonnaise with Bacon Vinaigrette, tarragon and chives

Serves 4

1 small head of frisee lettuce
1 shallot, peeled and finely sliced into rings
200g smoked bacon, cut into lardons
½ cup picked chervil leaves
½ picked continental parsley leaves
½ cup picked fresh tarragon
½ bunch chives, cut into 1 cm batons
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
4 soft-poached free range eggs
8 mini brioche, thinly sliced croutons

Bacon Lardons Method

1. In a large frying pan add the extra virgin olive oil and warm over a medium heat.

2. Add the son lardons to the frying pan and allow to cook for 10-121 minutes until the bacon becomes crispy and golden brown.

3. Using a slotted spoon, remove the bacon from the frying pan and set aside on absorbent paper. Reserve the remaining bacon fat from the pan for the vinaigrette dressing.

Bacon Vinaigrette Dressing

2 shallots, peel and finely diced
2 tbsp red wine vinegar
2 tbsp Dijon mustard
150ml extra virgin olive oil
Reserved bacon fat
Salt and pepper to season


1. In a medium sized bowl add the diced shallots, red wine vinegar and Dijon mustard and whisk well.

2. Whist continuing to whisk gradually add the olive oil to thicken the dressing.

3. Add the bacon fat and whisk until well incorporated. Season to taste.

To Assemble the Salad

1. Arrange in 4 individual bowls a bed of frisee lettuce leaves, top with a scattering of fried bacon lardons, finely sliced shallot rings and fresh green herbs chervil, continental parsley, tarragon and chives batons.

2. Place the warm soft poached freerange egg in the centre of bowl, lightly drizzle with bacon vinaigrette and garnish with thinly sliced brioche croutons.

Ros Ritchie Reisling - one of her many premium aromatic cool climate wines
Ros Ritchie Riesling – one of her many premium aromatic cool climate wines

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