Monday, October 05, 2015

The annual Muratie DuToitskloof cook-off

The Karoo lamb cook off, now in its third year, between Muratie wine estate in Stellenbosch and Du Toitskloof winery in Rawsonville has become an annual tradition. In previous years we have seen lamb curries, chops and potjies. This year, the challenge took the form of that old South African favourite, the braai, with sosaties and ribs. Of course, there was also a bit of boerewors
Wheat as a ground cover between the Muratie vines
The outdoor dining patio at Muratie, deserted on a cloudy day, especially as all the activity was at the back of the winery
A pretty face to welcome us
with a glass of Muratie’s Lady Alice MCC, made from Pinot noir with a dash of Chardonnay
The long table set for lunch
Bernard Kotze, Du Toitskloof’s Regional Sales Manager, sporting an interesting pair of shades
Hattingh de Villiers, Muratie’s winemaker, setting up his ribs on the braai. Muratie like their ribs big and were braaiing whole crowns of lamb. They used only salt on them
More Lady Alice for the guests
with Laurens Campher white blend. Muratie’s wines are named for people who have played a part in the farm’s long history
Posy Hazell enjoying some roasted brie with fresh strawberries
The table set up in the wine cellar for the judges
The Du Toitskloof cooks, Production manager Shawn Thomson and Muller Coetzee, Technical Director at ERM,
with their sosaties, which they marinaded overnight in buttermilk
and ribs, flavoured with salt and coriander seed
Muratie’s sosaties, ready for the table
and their ribs, juicy and just rare
Rijk Melck spells out the rules
While his wife, Kim, and Hattingh carve the ribs
Professor Johann Kirsten, Head of the Department of Agricultural Economics, Extension and Rural Development at the University of Pretoria told us about how the EC had suggested that we protect some of our own regional produce as Europe does. So far Rooibos and Honeybush tea and Karoo Lamb all have their protected status. South Africa is trying to value, promote and protect our special regional foods, starting with Karoo lamb, as products of origin and quality, as we already do with our wines
All genuine Karoo lamb will bear a sticker with a QR code and you can scan it with your phone to see which individual farm your lamb has come from
Waiting for the lamb to be served so we can start judging. The farm's Terrier is also waiting in anticipation of any bones
Lunch followed the judging and these Karoo lamb chops were served
It is beautiful meat
Muller Coetzee talks about his cooking style

The entries are given to the judges to taste. First Du Toitskloof
The braaiers wait anxiously for the decision
Shawn Thomson explains how he cooked the meat
And Kim explains how they did theirs
Muratie's plate
Chef Pete Goffe Wood was there to judge
The Muratie ribs were a clear winner
And the Du Toitskloof sosaties were winners as well, so this year a draw was declared
The Trophy now ready for the next competition in 2016
Joint winners
We settle down inside for lunch with some wine from both farms
The excellent du Toitskloof Pinotage and the Ansela van de Caab red blend
© John & Lynne Ford, Adamastor & Bacchus 2015

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