Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Cape Winemakers Guild tutored tasting at The Taj, Cape Town

Tasting great CWG Auction wines.
It began with possibly the best tasting of the year, to which we always feel privileged to be invited, the Cape Winemakers Guild guided tasting. Held this year at the Taj hotel, we speed tasted through 50 of the auction wines, with another 15 (hence all the auction wines) on a table afterwards. It is going to be a superb auction, and sadly with the current dramatic fall of the Rand, probably great for overseas buyers which will mean a lot of the wine going overseas.
The tasting is fast and furious. You have two glasses in front of you, one wine is poured, the winemaker takes the stand, talks briefly about the wine (usually only a minute or two) while you taste, spit and write your notes about the wine. While this happens the next wine is being poured. You have to keep on your toes to have an empty glass ready for the next wine. This goes on, usually quite amusingly, for about two and a half hours. There are individual spittoons, water and crackers on the table. This tasting is for the trade, the media and some potential buyers. There are public tastings of the wines before the auction, so you too can get an opportunity to taste the wines. www.capewinemakersguild.com/auction
It was held at The Reserve, the old Board of Executors banking hall that is now part of the Taj Hotel property
The 2015 Nedbank Cape Winemakers Guild Auction, the Guild’s 31st, will take place at Spier, Stellenbosch on Saturday 3rd October from 09h00
Pre-registration for the 2015 Nedbank Cape Winemakers Guild Auction is essential and all registrations must be received by the Cape Winemakers Guild no later than Friday 25th September 2015
John Loubser and Jeff Grier bottle tasting sparkling wines before the session begins to avoid bad bottles being poured
And in the front row ... are many of the media and trade

CWG Chair Andries Burger opened the tasting
Swirl, nose, taste, spit, write. Move on
The winemakers were seated down the side of the room allowing them easy access to the podium
Christine Andrews of De Trafford and Marine Point of Cape Point Vineyards were part of the team pouring the wines 
Jeff Grier opened with his Villiera 2008 Meteor MCC and then went on to present Peter Ferreira's Graham Beck 2010 Non Plus MCC as Pieter is currently on a promotional tour in the USA. Both are brilliant wines
We loved the Nitida Barrel 28 Sauvignon Blanc by Bernhard Veller. It shows all the best characteristics of the great noble grape, with a lovely full palate, crisp white fruits, even a hint of white fleshed cherries and some gentle hints of the new wood
Duncan Savage talks about his Cape Point 2014 Auction White. Seaweed iodine, soft, long loquat and lime fruit. Needs time but a cracker of a wine
Kevin Grant on form! Talking about his Ataraxia 2014 Under the Gavel Chardonnay, Lynne's favourite wine of the evening, perhaps predictably. Sophisticated and elegant, it is a golden wine, in colour, aroma and completely coats the palate with golden apple fruit with a zesty kick of lime. Food wine par excellence
Another wonderful Chardonnay was made by Andries Burger of Paul Cluver; The Wagon Trail 2014. Slightly smoky, rich depth on nose; limes, lemons, citrus, another Cluver gem, ready to drink now
Jeremy Walker presented his Akayla 2009 Bordeaux blend named for his Akayla at Cubs way back when. Incense, violets and cassis cherry rich and elegant with some chalky tannins to last
Gary Jordan presented his Bordeaux blend, Sophia 2012 with its intriguing nose, minerality, perfume and gently silky fruit, a classic wine
Etienne le Riche is a master of red wines and his 2011 Auction Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon did not disappoint. Intense cassis fruit, nutmeg, mint, cherries, strawberries and rhubarb with some spice
Andrea Mullineux presented her Trifecta 2013 Chenin Blanc and a layered Swartland The Gris Semillon 2004 made from 54 year old vines, but is here tasting one of the red wines on show
At the later evening tasting, David Nieuwoudt presented his Cederberg 2013 Teen Die Hoog Shiraz
The silent auction table at the public tasting in the CTICC. Lynne bid on a few wines but only got one, De Grendel’s excellent 2015 wooded Chenin Blanc, made by Charles Hopkins

© John & Lynne Ford, Adamastor & Bacchus 2015
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