Thursday, August 06, 2015

This Week's MENU - Caroline's Reds, Agri Wellington, De Grendel, Morvino & Vinimark tastings

A break in the storm. Looking across Wellington to the surrounding mountains

In this week’s MENU:
* Learn about wine and cooking
We write about our experiences in MENU, not only to entertain you, but to encourage you to visit the places and events that we do. We know you will enjoy them and we try to make each write up as graphic as we can, so you get a good picture of what is on offer at each place, restaurant, wine farm, festival we visit. To get the whole story with photographs, please click on “Read on.....” at the end of each paragraph, which will lead you to the related blog, with pictures and more words. At the end of each blog, click on RETURN TO MENU to come back to the blog version of MENU.
The Quest for the Best in Wellington     Once a year Wellington Wine Route asks its wine farms to enter their wines in this competition to find the best wines that Wellington is producing. The Award ceremony was held last Wednesday at Au’ de Hex conference venue in Wellington and there were some surprises.
We also note that not all the wine farms in the area enter this competition. We think this is a mistake and would encourage them to rethink this next year. We like the fact that the competition is judged by some very experienced local and international Sommeliers who have an excellent insight into the requirements of the target market. We have attached Higgo Jacobs speech (He convened this panel) and the sommeliers' comments on the wines they tasted and also the list of winners.. Read On.....
Caroline’s Red Wine Review     Caroline Rillema has a very good palate and a very good wine business. Once a year, she showcases her favourite red wines at her Red Wine Review and we were privileged to be invited this week. It was held at the Table Bay Hotel. There were some absolutely stunning wines in the list, in fact it is hard to mention any that were not special. She chooses her top 60 red wines, all of which must be at least Platter 4½ star or Old Mutual Trophy winners. This is the a superb opportunity to taste so many of the current top and iconic red wines of the country, at one tasting; wines that are not ever open for tasting, even on the farms. All for a ticket price which is less than the price of one of these bottles. Some farms bring their newly released wines to show and others bring vintage wines to taste. And you can book (through Computicket) for her White wine review on the 21st of October to taste 60 iconic white wines for R200. See our Events calendar. Read On.....
Sir de Villiers Graaff invites us for a look at the future of De Grendel Wine Estate     Sir David Graaff, 3rd Baronet, passed away at home on the De Grendel family farm on Saturday, 24 January 2015, after a short illness. His son Sir de Villiers Graaff, is now the 4th Baronet and he invited the media to this event.
We know, when we visit De Grendel, that we are going to taste great wines. Charles Hopkins makes them and his care and attention to detail shows in each bottle. Their Koetshuis 2015 Sauvignon Blanc is one of our favourites and is crisp and full of all the lovely gooseberries, elderflower, green pepper and asparagus tastes we so enjoy in this varietal. We hear that our favourite blend The Winifred will have a small release this year to De Grendel’s wine club members only, and the 2012 Op die Berg Pinot Noir we tasted was a quintessential example full of smoky cherries and vanilla, gently perfumed with well integrated fruit but it needs time. They have completely changed the old tasting room into a comfortable lounge with those amazing views out over the sea to Table Mountain. The restaurant downstairs has also had some changes Read on.....
MORE, the Cook Book launch     We were invited to the launch of this book on midday Saturday at Societi Bistro. Owner Pete Weetman had generously allowed them to take over lunchtime service of the restaurant and chef Stefan Marais made lovely snacks from the book. Author Sylvie Hurford has written this, her second cookbook for families with allergies. The focus is on feeding children, who do not yet have family allergies, food that will keep them free of those allergies that plague their families. The simple and delicious recipes are wonderfully showcased by photographer Warren Heath and book designer Petal Palmer Read On.....
Morvino Trade tasting     This small trade tasting was held in the famous Ocean room at the Mount Nelson Hotel on Monday night and we had such fun catching up with the wines, and friends from wine farms we know and love. This was accompanied by good canapés made by the Mount Nelson kitchen, they did very good smoked salmon on melba toast and pulled pork rolls amongst others. Read On.....
Vinimark and WineWorx Trade tasting     Vinimark and Wine Worx held their annual trade wine show on Monday evening at the Cape Town International Convention Centre. They have a superb list of French champagnes and distribute some of the best South African wines... Read on.....
is Lynne's take on the Sweet Potato and Turnip Dauphinois we were served at the Quest for the Best Wellington wines . We had this with our roast lamb on Sunday.
1 large white sweet potato, peeled - 2 turnips, topped and tailed and peeled where necessary - 30 to 40g grated Emmenthal cheese - 4 T double cream yoghurt - salt and freshly ground pepper - 1 T butter - 3 T chicken or vegetable stock
Using a mandolin grater if you have one, slice the potato and turnips into thin slices. Layer them alternately in a buttered baking dish, seasoning the layers as you go and spreading a layer of yoghurt and cheese between each layer. Top with cheese and some small cubes of butter and pour the stock in carefully around the edges. Bake in a 180 ⁰C oven until well done and browning on top. Serves 4.
Coming Events:
Friday,  7th  August  7p.m for 7:30 p.m.   Mediterranean Extravaganza at Erinvale Estate Hotel & Spa, a Mediterranean food and wine pairing extravaganza offered by Chaine des Rôtisseurs chef Ghenwa Steingaszner of GHENWA’S LEBANESE COOKING CLUB and Henry Kotze, cellar master of Morgenster Estate. The event will take place in the “Seventeen07” dining room and will feature intermittent entertainment provided by singer and musician Dara Steingaszner (daughter of chef Ghenwa). Cost: R 550   Space: limited to 35  Dress code: smart casual. Erinvale Hotel offers free parking and attractive special rates for guests wishing to stay for the night. For reservations & hotel bookings please contact Genine Bruce, Conference Coordinator at +27 21 847 1160 or
Saturday, 8th August from 11h00 to 12h30   Ladies of Leisure at Le Bonheur. Join winemaker Lauren Behrens in celebrating Woman’s Day. Ladies are encouraged to arrive with a group of friends and enjoy a morning of wine and treats. Six wines will be paired with sweet and savoury delicacies at the magnificent Le Bonheur Manor House. The event costs R125 per person. Advanced booking is advised. Call 021 875 5478 or email to make your booking now.
Saturday 8th August  Barrel lunch at Beaumont Family Wines. Starting at 11:30 with a short demonstration by Sebastian on the art of pruning a vine and then heading back to the barrel cellar for a delicious lunch paired with Beaumont wines. Menu @  R410 per person Bookings & Contact hereontact
Sunday, 9th August  10h30 to around 15h00. Celebrating All Things Beautiful on Women’s Day at Nederburg. Meet new Nederburg cellar-master Andrea Freeborough for a luxurious ladies’ feast of the senses in the Winelands. Book your seats at R350 a head from Webtickets  For additional information, please contact Nederburg on 021 877 5155, or send an e-mail to
Learn about wine and cooking We receive a lot of enquiries from people who want to learn more about wine. Cathy Marston and The Cape Wine Academy both run wine education courses, some very serious and others more geared to fun. You can see details of Cathy’s WSET and other courses here and here and the CWA courses here. Karen Glanfield has taken over the UnWined wine appreciation courses from Cathy. See the details here
The Hurst Campus, an accredited school for people who want to become professional chefs, has a variety of courses. See the details here
In addition to his Sense of Taste Culinary Arts School, Chef Peter Ayub runs a four module course for keen home cooks at his Maitland complex. Details here
Nadège Lepoittevin-Dasse has French cooking classes in Noordhoek and conducts cooking tours to Normandy. You can see more details here
Emma Freddi runs the Enrica Rocca cooking courses at her home in Constantia
Nicolette van Niekerk runs baking courses at La Petite Patisserie in Montague Gardens
George Jardine will be running a series of winter cooking courses and other activities at Jordan. Details here

6th August 2015
PS If a word or name is in bold type and underlined, click on it for more information
Phones: +27 21 439 3169 / 083 229 1172 / 083 656 4169
Postal address: 60 Arthurs Rd, Sea Point 8005
Our Adamastor & Bacchus© tailor-made Wine, Food and Photo tours take small groups (up to 6) to specialist wine producers who make the best of South Africa’s wines. Have fun while you learn more about wine and how it is made! Tours can be conducted in English, German, Norwegian and standard or Dutch-flavoured Afrikaans.
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Recommendations of products and outside events are not solicited or charged for, and are made at the authors’ pleasure. All photographs, recipes and text used in these newsletters and our blogs are © John & Lynne Ford, Adamastor & Bacchus. Our restaurant reviews are usually unsolicited. We prefer to pay for our meals and not be paid in any way by anyone. Whether we are invited or go independently, we don’t feel bad if we say we didn’t like it. Honesty is indeed our best policy. While every effort is made to avoid mistakes, we are human and they do creep in occasionally, for which we apologise. Our Avast! ® Anti-Virus software is updated at least daily and our system is scanned continually for viruses.

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