Tuesday, July 25, 2017

A Trade Tasting of Wines from the Raath stable

We took an Uber from Wale Street to get to Harrington's Cocktail Lounge in Harrington Street, as Lynne has twisted her knee. Kathy and Dane Raath represent several excellent wine farms and this is the annual chance to taste them for the trade. The winemakers are present, so you can ask lots of questions about vintages, terroir and the making of them. We tried new wines, new vintages, some old, some favourites, one or two not, and an exciting bottle of Chenin hoping to make it into the CWG Auction. The judging of those takes place on Thursday this week
From one gin tasting to another. Esperanza from Hope on Hopkins was served with this Fitch and Leeds Pink tonic, a rather strange mix of roses and cucumber of all things. Lynne liked the gin. They were also serving it warm with tea, which Lynne found very comforting and soothing. So now we have an alternative to a whisky or brandy toddy. Almost look forward to needing one.... It did take one back to Prohibition days and drinking gin in tea cups
The bar with the huge array of glasses needed for a large tasting like this
Sebastian Beaumont talks to James Pietersen about his wines. It was the Beaumont wines that were the most talked about and praised that evening, the buzz in the room, his Hope Marguerite Chenin was on everyone's lips, literally and figuratively. We suspect this may sell very well this year, there were many sommeliers and restaurateurs present
The queue to taste was led here by Gosia Zielinska, sommelier at The Pot Luck Club
Michael Pownall chats with Teddy Hall. In Teddy's hands is an unlabelled bottle of the Chenin Blanc he has entered for the CWG auction. Lynne tasted it and it reminded her and others of Teddy's 2005 Rudera. Full, layered a compliment to the varietal and so excellent
Mike Bampfield Duggan of Wine Concepts in discussion with Katherine Miller, Marketing Manager of the Wine of the Month Club
A new label for us. Pandora's Box grapes come, Lynne was told, from Nabygelegen and the wine is made by James McKenzie. It has his inimitable stamp all over it!
Hope on Hopkins Gin with those roses and the tonic
The Chamonix table, deservedly popular
Thinus Neethling, winemaker at Chamonix, told us all about the new wines and the changes on the farm. We will visit soon
The long and the short and the tall at the end of the evening, when everyone is happy and tired. Lynne with Thinus, JD Gilloway representing Rosalie wines, and Pardon Taguza, sommelier from Aubergine/Auslese

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