Monday, May 04, 2015

Elgin Cool Wine & Country Festival. 1 Hannay and Catherine Marshall

Saturday started cool, drizzly and misty in Cape Town, but by lunch time in Elgin, the sun was out and we had a lovely festive day. We met some lovely people and tasted some very good wines. We began at Hannay Wines with Catherine Marshall doing a tasting of both their wines followed by huge hamburgers. Then it was off down the road to see the Wallaces at Wallacedale farm to taste their wines and some chocolate from Rococo Finally we finished the day at Lothian in the most amazing house we have seen for some time, tasting their wines and watching the sun disappear over the mountains. It was a fine day
The large cellar doors at Hannay
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Our first wine of the day, the Hannay Sauvignon Blanc 2014. More tropical flavours than before, nice acid fruit balance, good depth but still restrained. A food wine
Some of the Catherine Marshall wines we tasted later
Lunch preparations
A joyful Cathy welcomes us
Autumn vines, apple orchards and liquid amber trees on Hannay
The autumn colours are beautiful. Visit in spring and see the fruit blossoms
Time for the guided tasting of Hannay and Catherine Marshall wines in the wine cellar
We began with the Hannay 2012 Sauvignon Blanc. Pale lime in colour, cats pee, capsicum and elderflower on the intense nose. Crisp, lean, very fresh, with guava and elderflower on the palate. Finishes dry with a slight touch of chalk. Wish there was some left, this is a lovely wine Then we tasted the Hannay 2013 Sauvignon Blanc which has 10% Semillon added. Rain on flint is how Cathy describes it. Dusty with guava and Elderflower. Full of lime and zest of lemon, complex, layered with some fig on the end. A dry, extremely elegant food wine
The line up of the white wines. The last wine was the 2014 Sauvignon Blanc which we tasted on arrival
The full line up of wines we tasted
See, you can smell the cats pee... Early aroma training will one day a wine maker make
There were two superb chocolates paired with the (l) Sauvignon Blanc and (r)the Pinot Noir for everyone to taste
All the participants in the tasting, seated at the tables in the cellar
The four reds we tasted. Catherine Marshall 2013 Pinot Noir. Liquorice and roses, savoury, perfumed and spicy with a forest floor mushroom note on the nose. On the palate red cherries, raspberry, so layered and complex with a note dark toasted wood on the end. Very satisfying, well made with long flavours. The grapes for this wine were grown on lighter sandy soil. Then came the 2014 Pinot Noir, also grown on sandy soil. Incense, violet, raspberry notes, alcohol, Brûléed fruits. Pure fruit on the palate but not over ripe. Restrained cherries – the ones with the flavour but not the sweetness. A classic food wine, especially for rich patés
Next was the 2012 Catherine Marshall Pinot noir, grown on clay soil. So different. Nose has meaty savoury umami notes, almost soy. On the palate cranberry, rhubarb, but no sour acidity, quite chalky tannins, tight, needs time. The finish is long, soft and chalky. This will be a big wine. Then to compare, the 2013, also on clay soil. Spirity cherries, still one dimensional and closed but hiding. It started to open up and show its fruit a little and there are definitely forest floor notes with the classic pinot fruit. Keep and keep, but buy now and enjoy at its peak

Tasting and making notes
Time for lunch. Here is the expert cooking the hamburgers perfectly. You then dressed them yourself from the burger table: a bun, onion, tomato, sauces, mustard, lettuce, mayo, lots of options. And they were very good indeed. R80 each but, if you bought a case of wine, they were free
We shared our table with a charming couple who are immersing themselves in wine knowledge and experiences, Jean van Iddekinge and Yolandi la Grange
John with one of our favourite people, Cathy Marshall. It was a great tasting, thank you Cathy
Part Two, Wallovale
© John & Lynne Ford, Adamastor & Bacchus 2015

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