Courtesy of NedAuction July 19, 2011
Posted on 03 August 2011 by davidbiggs
Courtesy of NedAuction July 19, 2011
Posted on 24 August 2011 by davidbiggs
I’ve heard several friends say virtuously, “I enjoy wine, but I never drink when I’m on my own.”
This seems to imply that solitary drinking is a vice – one of the signs of drunkenness, something to be ashamed of. I wonder why.
We often say wine should be regarded as an essential part of good living, like the appreciation of music and art, like good food rather than a snatched hamburger. Good living is surely something for every day, not merely when we’re showing off to friends.
We all eat alone at times, so why not enjoy a glass of wine as well?
I very often have a glass of wine with my lunch, whether I have company or not. A glass of muscadel goes very well with a plate of bobotie, and a full-bodied Cabernet Sauvignon certainly enhances a bowl of warming winter stew.
Even if I’m just having a bowl of vegetable soup, it’s turned into a good meal with a glass of Chenin Blanc.
One of my most peaceful moments comes when I sit on my stoep in the company of my two cats at sunset and watch the ocean while sipping a generous glass of a wine selected to match the mood.
Right now the Southern Right whales are back in False Bay for the spring season of calving and mating. We sit enjoying the deep organ notes of their blowing and the slap of great flukes on the water’s surface, and I raise my glass of Shiraz to them in welcome and life seems pretty good.
My cats, however, remain devoutly teetotal. Oh well, everyone to his own.
Posted on 17 August 2011 by davidbiggs
We are often told food and wine are the perfect companions. The exciting thing is to find a perfect match between the two.
It can be a headache or an adventure, depending on how you view life’s little challenges.
It’s not really helpful simply to say “white wine with white meat and red wine with red meat”.
There’s no such thing as one-size-fits-all in food pairing.
Chicken can be all sorts of things, from a bland grill to a rich spicily sauced creation.
Red meat can be anything from a mild slice of roast lamb to a rich ox-tail casserole.
And what about dishes like pizza, with their huge range of possibilities? Chinese food? Thai food?
They’re tackling the pizza problem at Asara Wine Estate and Hotel near Stellenbosch this winter, with a series of pizza and wine pairings in a meal that’s fun and affordable.
For R75 guests are served four flavours of pizza and four of Asara’s wines to mix and match.
How about these for some interesting combinations:
A bobotie pizza slice paired with Asara’s Cape Fusion 2009;
A crème fraiché and bacon slice with the Asara Cabernet Sauvignon Blanc 2010;
A mushroom slice with the Merlot 2008; or
A soy and honey marinated butterfish slice with Asara’s Unwooded Chardonnay 2011.
The Asara Pizza and Wine Pairing is timed for the launch of their new 2011 vintages of Unwooded Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc and designed to show off Asara’s unpretentious, affordable new style.
For more information, you can visit the website:
A slice of babotie pizza sounds like a whole new experience on its own.
For an interesting spring wine adventure, consider Beaumont Wines Barrel Cellar Lunch on August 28. The event starts with a pruning experience in the vineyards, followed by an elegant lunch in the cellar.
The menu includes a starter of poached pear salad with smoked chevré cheese,
Lamb and fig tagine as a main course followed by rhubarb, apple and orange crumble with cream.This is followed by coffee.
Each course will come with a carefully matched Beaumont wine.
The cost of the lunch is R300 a head and seats are limited. Bookings can be made by calling 028 2849194, or by e-mailing email@example.com
Posted on 11 August 2011 by davidbiggs
On a recent visit to Robertson I was given a small bottle of intriguing golden liquid labelled Abrikoos Wijn made by Kingsriver Estate in McGregor.
Officially, of course, it can’t be called wine at all. Wine is defined as the fermented juice of the grape, vitis vinifera.
Abrikoos Wijn is made from apricots.
Kingsriver is owned by the De Clercq family and the back label of the bottle explains that the recipe was found in an old book written by a deceased relative, Joop Dhert, called Wijn Maken Thuis (Wine Making at Home).
Home winemaking has a long tradition all over he world and “wines” are made from a wide variety of interesting things.
In British crime novels of the 1930s you’ll often find elderly spinsters or tubby vicars making elderberry wine or dandelion wine or even parsnip wine in their potting sheds.
It seems like rather a good idea. Maybe I should borrow Joop Dhert’s book.
The Abrikoos Wijn is utterly delicious. It has a wine alcohol level of 13,5%, which is normal for a table wine, and tastes like fresh apricots, with a nice smack of refreshing acidity.
The label suggests you can pour it over traditional Cape desserts like malva pudding, or serve it poured over ice cubes, but I enjoyed it on its own, well chilled.
I shall be looking for more next time I’m in the Robertson area.