Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Tasting in the Hemel en Aarde Valley - Creation

Creation co-owners JC and Carolyn Martin were at the Birthday party we attended on Saturday night and they asked us to visit the farm next day so, as the day was beautiful and we were not due for lunch at Newton Johnson till 1pm, we decided to take the short trip up the valley
There is a lovely view of Babylonstoren mountain over the Creation farm dam and vineyards
We were seated next to the fire in the tasting room
It is wide open and full of light, with more beautiful views and it is very wheelchair and disabled friendly
Phillip Marais, Creation’s restaurant manager, was working hard keeping all the groups happy who had come for tastings and lunch. They have a very diverse menu of many delights. We have promised to come back soon to experience the new Story of Creation seven course wine and food pairing menu. You can have a 10am Brunch pairing, a Kiss and Tell Pairing and a smaller 3 course pairing menu, Cheese pairings, Charcuterie pairings, a Paradoxical Wine and Chocolate pairing, even a Non-Alcoholic pairing for those who prefer not to imbibe and also a young Adults’ Menu. AND you can even do a 40 minute walk among the vineyards and the fynbos with a dedicated guide. Check out their website for all the details
We began with the classic 2016 barrel matured Sauvignon Blanc. And the elegant peachy Viognier. All the wines are served in the correct Riedel glasses
Then the lovely 2016 Chardonnay, rather French in style, with a Southern nose of golden fruit and the very special top wine, The Art of Chardonnay. Owner-Winemaker JC Martin had joined us by then and we had long discussions about our mutual love for this varietal and its expression. As it says in Platter, this wine is not easily forgotten, with vanilla oak, with a tingle on the tongue, good depth and clean minerality, very much in the Burgundy style. We loved it
A taste of their Elation MCC Brut Nature, a lovely celebratory wine; 80% Chardonnay 20% Pinot Noir. Beautifully in balance, crisp and dry with minerality and restraint
Then the two Pinot Noirs. The 2016 has violets on the nose and palate, is lightly toasted and has lovely fruit. The Art of Pinot shows soft, sweet elegant fruit on the nose, On the palate, the soft berry fruit shows more elegance, soft tannins, some light toast and good minerality. JC says that this year is the best and we agree. It is layered with a hint of licorice on the end, SO delicious
JC Martin enjoying his wine, as were we
The 2015 Reserve Merlot is in the French St Émilion style, but SA's version of the best St Émilion fruit, with riper berry flavour; still elegant and carefully crafted, but we are warmer than France
Carolyn Martin was then able to join us for a short while before we had to be on our way to our lunch booking. We finished with a tank sample of the Shiraz Grenache - one of our favourites, but currently sold out. It's a meaty, spicy, rich fruit Grenache influenced wine, savoury and umami; a "FOOD NOW!" wine. They are certainly doing such innovative things. All the wines score 4 stars and above in Platter and deserve them, and more

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