Monday, December 05, 2016

This Week's MENU. Keermont new releases, Springfield Lost Vintage, Amorim MCC Award winners, Woolworths wines at Villiera, Wine Concepts' Champagne Festival, Chicken and broccoli stir fry, Domaine Grier 2007 Grenache

This magnificent peacock was strutting his stuff at Shannon wine estate in Elgin
Off up the coast      We are looking forward to taking a break and this will be the second last MENU for 2016. It has been a very busy year, sometimes quite frantically so and we need to take some time off to recuperate and gird our loins, as it were, for 2017, a year which promises to hold much excitement for South Africa and, indeed the World, so please read on... or click any of the following links to look at a story
*       Coming events
Bringing the mountain to Mohammed? No, wines to the wine trade     Keermont’s Vineyards are beautifully maintained, produce very good wines and are up, up, up high in Paradyskloof (Paradise Valley) with vineyards 250m to 400m above sea level. They realised that it is often difficult for the wine trade to get to them, so they came to town last week and brought their new releases with them. They held a small open tasting all day in their Kloof Street offices and we grasped this opportunity to taste these classy wines
Springfield - the Lost Vintage     In 1997, Abrie Bruwer, owner of Springfield in Robertson, made a vintage of his Mèthode Ancienne Cabernet Sauvignon. When it came time to release this wine, Abrie said it was not ready. He has been cellaring it ever since, waiting for it to mature. They even went so far as to experiment with ageing 600 bottles under the sea, corks sealed with wax, for 3 years, to see if it would speed up the maturation process. Now, after all this time, nearly twenty years, they are releasing the wine. A limited quantity is available and we were invited to taste it at a new venue in Wale Street in Cape Town. We know that South African wines can age for much more than 20 years
Amorim MCC Awards winners tasting at the Taj Hotel     Earlier this year we were at the Amorim Awards ceremony for the top MCC's in South Africa. This was a chance to formally taste them. It was held last week at the Taj Hotel by the Cape Classique Association
A Tasting of Woolworths wines at Villiera     Woolworths works very closely with excellent Cape vineyards to make special selections of wine available to Woolworths' customers. We often buy them; these special selections often win major wine awards and are top quality. The wines were to be tasted in Riedel glasses. So we were very keen to taste some of these at a function arranged at Villiera, who produce many great MCCs for Woolworths. John had a wine tour that he was booked for months ago, so Lynne took advantage of the transport Woolworths arranged, and took her camera along
Wine Concepts' "The Finer things of Life" Champagne Festival    This is always a crowd puller. Where else can you taste so many good French champagnes at once for a reasonable amount of money, with canapés circulating during the evening. There is a raffle with superb prizes and oyster, chocolate and sushi to buy. The theme this year was Cats and there were some amusing renditions. The Champagnes can be bought at a discount on the night and if you missed it, you can get them all from Wine Concepts
Apparently, this is one of the most popular dishes in the USA. The ingredients were what we had in the fridge, so Lynne Googled chicken and broccoli and this is what happened next. A quick and reasonably healthy supper dish if you are in a hurry. You can use cooked chicken if you have it. The secret of wok cooking is to prepare everything and have it ready to hand before you start stir frying. This is quick
2 chicken breasts, cut into 3 cm cubes - 1 teaspoon of corn flour and 1 Tablespoon - 3 spring onions, sliced at an angle - 2 cm piece of fresh ginger, grated - 2 cloves of garlic, grated - 1 T light soy - 2 T sugar - 1 T Shaoxing rice wine (or dry sherry) - 1/2 T sesame seed oil - 1/3 cup water - 3 T peanut or coconut oil - 1 large head of broccoli broken up into bite sized florets - slices of the broccoli stem (keep separate) - 1 T Hoisin sauce - 1 T white sesame seeds – optional, 3/4 teaspoon of chilli flakes - salt and freshly ground black pepper
In a glass bowl, marinate the chicken with the spring onions, half the ginger and garlic, soy sauce, sugar, 1 teaspoon corn flour, the rice wine, sesame oil and 1/2 t salt for 15 minutes at room temperature. You can marinade for longer. The corn flour tenderises the chicken beautifully.
Heat your wok to a high heat and add 1 T oil. Add the broccoli stems and stir fry for half a minute. Add the rest of the broccoli, the remaining ginger and garlic, 2 T water and some pepper. Stir fry until the broccoli is bright green and still crisp. Remove and set aside. Reheat the wok, add the rest of the oil then add the chicken and the chilli flakes if you are using them. Stir fry until the chicken begins to take on some colour, about 3 minutes. Add the Hoisin sauce and return the broccoli to the pan and toss to heat together. Add the reserved corn flour in water and bring to a boil to thicken. Then add the rest of the marinade. Thin with a little more water if very thick. Taste and season with black pepper and a little salt if necessary. Garnish with sesame seeds and serve with Jasmine rice. Serves 4
This wine would be lovely with a festive meal. It comes from France and is made by Villiera on their estate Domaine Grier in the Roussillon region in the South of France. You will find it only at Woolworths and it is very reasonably priced for a French wine with age. It is elegant, intense, perfumed on the nose with some savoury notes and layers of soft mouth-filling dark red berries and cherries with some spice and liquorice. It is delicious. R99.95 from Woolworths
In MENU next week: Marigold Indian restaurant, Jordan Summer Festival, Flagstone, Elgin, Asara, Nederburg and more

4th December 2016
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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. This electronic journal has been sent to you because you have personally subscribed to it or because someone you know has asked us to send it to you or forwarded it to you themselves. Addresses given to us will not be divulged to any person or organisation. We collect them only for our own promotional purposes. If you wish to be added to our mailing list, please click here to send us a message and if you wish to be removed from our mailing list, please click here to send us a message.

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