Wednesday, August 12, 2015

This Week's MENU - John Collins tasting, Swartland Survivor launch, Wild Peacock, Chilli

A wintry sunset over Camps Bay beach
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 onRead 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.
John Collins Trade Tasting at Ottimo Cibo     The week started well with a great tasting of the brands represented by John Collins. It is a small but perfectly formed list of some of our top wine farms and brands: Diemersfontein, Jordan, Kleinood, Newton Johnson, Sutherland, Springfield, Keet Wines and, newly added to the stable, is Le Lude MCC from Franschhoek.  Read On....
Meeting the Survivor for Dinner at Overhex wines     So here is the story of the label. A truck carrying 33 Nguni cows went past one of their wine farms and, as they are wont to do, one leapt off the back of the truck into the vineyards. The truck continued and the cow adapted itself to the new situation. It was adopted by the farmer and was thereafter known as the Survivor. Overhex has produced a range of wines to celebrate this cow and we were invited to join them for dinner at the winery in Worcester and sample the wines over dinner in their newly finished restaurant tasting room.  Read On....
Mexican food at Wild Peacock     Wild Peacock in Stellenbosch stock the things chefs and good cooks want, all the luxuries like oysters, freshwater crayfish, imported and local cheeses, fresh fish, game, charcuterie, chocolate and lots, lots more. They have a retail shop in town and a huge warehouse in the industrial area. This week we were invited to come and see a demonstration of Mexican food products (made in the USA) they are importing.
Following the tasting, we went to their Emporium and Lynne bought two packets of dried smoked chillies, a packet of Ancho and a packet of Californian  Read On....
This week's recipe is a Chilli con Carne using dried Ancho chillies     They are not hot at all and impart a lovely chocolate and smoke note to the chilli. If you like your chilli con carne hot, you will want to add some fresh green chilli to your own taste. You can also use the Ancho chillies to make a chilli cream.
Chilli con Carne with Mexican dried chillies
2 or 3 Ancho dried chillies 1 T olive oil – 1 large onion, finely chopped – 30g smoked bacon, finely chopped 400g beef mince 1 T chopped fresh oregano or 1t dried 1 t ground cumin – 2 large cloves of garlic, crushed – fresh chopped chilli – 400 ml tomato passata or a tin of chopped tomatoes – 1 tin of red kidney beans. drained salt and black pepper
Toast the Ancho chillies for a few seconds in a hot dry pan, but do not burn them - this brings out the flavour. Remove the stem and the seeds and then soak them in some water for half an hour. They will soften a little. Fry the onions in the oil with a good pinch of salt, till soft, then add bacon and fry, then the beef and fry quickly until it is brown. Add the oregano, cumin, garlic and chilli and stir quickly to blend. Add the passata and the beans. Remove the chillies from the water and chop finely. Add to the pot with some of the soaking water. At this point you may want to add some fresh chilli for heat, then season and simmer until the beef is tender. Add a little water if it needs more moisture during cooking. Adjust the seasoning and serve with fluffy rice and a tomato and onion salsa. Top with guacamole and sour cream. ALWAYS better the next day.
This makes four to five large servings. Double the recipe if serving more.
Coming Events:
Thursday, 13th August at 18h30  Oneiric  Wines  and  Thomas  Maxwell  Dinner  and  Wine  Pairing in the newly launched private room at Thomas Maxwell. Join Shan Pascall, owner of Oneiric wines and her side-kick Venetia LePine-Williams for a delicious a la carte food and wine pairing amongst stories of the family, the wine estate and taste profiles. The menu has been paired with Oneiric's award winning wines, including the newly released big daddy First Quantum Grand Reserve. Thomas Maxwell Wine Library, Shop 8, 140, 11th Street, Parkmore, Johannesburg. Cost: R465 per person includes 3 course meal and wine pairing. Bookings through Shan Pascall
Thursday, 13th August, 18h00 to 21h00 Nedbank Cape Winemakers Guild Auction Showcase. Cape Town International Convention Centre. R190 per person including tasting glass. Tickets can be purchased via To find out more, visit:, email or call +27 +21 852 0408
Friday, 14th and Saturday, 16th August  Sijnn wines will host a fine wine weekend, partnered with De Hoop Nature Reserve, to showcase their wines against some international benchmarks. David Trafford has carefully selected some special wines to show over the weekend and it promises to be a great getaway for food & wine lovers. Whale watchers haven, De Hoop is based near Malgas, a 30 minute drive from the Sijnn winery. This makes it the perfect venue for a decent break while getting to enjoy some incredible wines. The weekend includes two nights’ accommodation with breakfasts, two 3 course wine dinners, lunch and a guided walk for R3000 pp. There are only a few seats left; to make a booking please email Christine as soon as possible
Saturday, 15th August 08h00 to 16h00  Paul Cluver and Oak Valley invite you to join the official launch party of ElginMTB. ElginMTB is a collaborative project between neighbours Paul Cluver and Oak Valley, who have joined their trails to create an unique MTB experience. Riders will now have the option to legitimately cross our borders and cycle a 70km round-trip – making it one of the longest rides in the country with spectacular single track. View it in your Browser
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

12th 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.
If you like the photographs you see in our publications, please look at our Adamastor Photo website for our rate card and samples from our portfolio
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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