Wine & Asian Food

Gado Gado Salad and Semillon

Made with authentic Asian ingredients such as soy sauce, galangal, kaffir lime and chillies, gado gado salad is crunchy and delicious. It is filling too, made as it is, with potatoes and cabbage, which contribute to the nutritious value that this dish carries.

Gado gado salad is often paired with a variety of wines. Many restaurants have their own specific preferences, but we suggest the modern white wine, Semillon. Here is a simple recipe for you to try out at home, but make sure you get a bottle of this stylish wine to go with it!

Gado gado salad with Semillon


280g Peanut butter (‘crunchy’ is more authentic)
1 tsp shrimp paste
3 chilli peppers, small (add more if desired) – finely chopped
5 Valcom kaffir lime leaves, chopped
60 ml ABC sweet soy sauce (Kecap Manis)
2 tbsp galangal, finely chopped
5 fresh garlic cloves, minced
1 large onion, finely chopped
150 ml water


400g potato, peeled & cubed
150g cabbage, shredded
150g cucumber, julienned
150g bean sprouts
300g tofu (optional)
2 eggs


1. To prepare the sauce: in a wok, under high heat, stir-fry garlic, onion, galangal, chilli peppers and shrimp paste for 3 minutes or until golden brown and aromatic. Reduce heat and gradually stir in all remaining sauce ingredients until well-combined.
2. To make the salad: boil potatoes until cooked, drain and set aside.
3. Blanch cabbage and bean sprouts in boiling water for 10 seconds and immediately plunge into cold water. Drain vegetables and set aside.
4. Slice tofu into even-sized cubes (2cm/1”). Boil eggs for 6 minutes (or longer, depending on your preference), peel and slice.
5. In a large bowl, combine julienned cucumber, blanched cabbage and bean sprouts, boiled potato and sliced tofu.
6. Pour over gado gado sauce and garnish with sliced egg, coriander leaves and serve.


The Hunter Valley is a great place to start when talking about Semillon. The region has embraced the white wine variety, producing mostly dry styles, famous for their capacity to age well, gaining in richness and complexity. Barossa Semillons are generally richer and fuller, while Western Australian Semillons are typically lean and grassy. When selecting a youthful Semillon, look for lime, lemon, green apple, talc and zesty acid characteristics. More mature examples will display honey, toast, hazelnut and almond flavours. The appealing Hunter Valley example presented below makes a harmonious match for gado gado salad.

Gado gado salad: Jackson’s Hill The Reserve Semillon 2013

This is a stylish, modern Semillon that is drinking beautifully now and will also age well as all great Semillon’s should. It is light in colour and has fine aromatics of preserved lemon, talc and mountain herbs. On the palate the wine has mouth-watering and zesty layers of lemons and lemongrass and chalk. It has a good texture and finishes dry. Jackson’s Hill is a boutique Hunter Valley winery that specialises in creating stylish, award winning wines and the 2013 The Reserve is a very good wine to match with gado gado salad. The fresh acidity is perfect for cutting through the oily layer in the peanut sauce and the fine citrus fruits are well suited to match and lift the vegetables. A great wine for a great salad!


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