Friday, October 06, 2017

The 21st Michelangelo International Wine and Spirits Awards at the Cape Sun

We were invited by Lorraine Immelman, Owner and CEO of the Awards, to attend the Awards ceremony last Friday. It was held at the Cape Sun in Strand Street which has recently been refurbished. The Michelangelo International Wine and Spirits Awards was established in 1997 as the only international wine competition in South Africa. They are celebrating their 20th anniversary. The competition is unique in South Africa in that all judges are hand-picked wine experts, representing all seven continents around the globe. The banqueting room was filled to bursting with tables; we estimate 44 tables with 10 people at each, which made for a very large audience
What we really appreciated, being so far from the stage, was that the awards were announced on the big screen above the stage. To see the full list of awards click here
The menu for the evening
Cleverly, the starter was already on the table when we all entered. And a selection of wines was available at each table. The salmon was briefly cured, but we welcome a light and fresh starter, although you did have to watch for the extremely hot wasabi
PRO Emil Joubert was the Master of Ceremonies for the evening and he began the announcements
Technical Director Christine Rudman showed us some facts and figures. Judges this year represented 22 countries, only five were South African
This photograph shows how the 100 point scoring system works. More and more competition judges are adopting this system
The main course of poached chicken breast roulade with Duchesse potatoes, rainbow carrots, sprouts and a truffle jus. Sadly, with the best will in the world, keeping this dish warm and serving it to that many people means that the chicken and the potatoes will dry out
During dinner Emo Adams performed. He is very popular and, apparently, was very funny too. We were right under the speakers, so it was rather loud
We exited the banqueting hall for dessert which was served as a buffet. There were two choices - a Peppermint Crisp crème covered with granola and fresh fruit
You could add more fruit
Or these rather nice and crunchy mini chocolate coated balls
The chefs were assembling the desserts
including this lovely creamy chocolate crème, topped with raspberries
Michelangelo's double circle logo, which is presented to the winners of the various categories to adorn their wine bottles. Bronze, Gold, Double Gold, Platinum and Trophy are the levels
Christine awarding Shawn Thomson of Du ToitsKloof with his medal
She gets a lot of kisses from grateful winemakers or wine farm owners. This time, Grant Newton, Global Sales & Marketing Manager - Wine & Tourism at Groot Constantia
The much coveted Trophies. This was awarded to Oude Molen for their 14 year old Vintage Selection
Sometimes, we feel that we earned this one! It went to Lourensford for their MCC Brut 2011
Lorraine Immelman, who started these awards, in presents a medal
Worthy winners queuing for their awards
We were so delighted to see that Irene Waller of La Bri in Franschhoek was awarded a Platinum medal for her La Bri 2014 Syrah
Deidré Labuschagne GM of Bergsig Estate with a Platinum medal for their unconventional blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Touriga Nacional, Bergsig Icarus 2016
All the Platinum medal winners
and to Danie Keulder of Nitida the African Cellar Suppliers Pinot Noir Trophy for their 2015 Pinot Noir. Hurray!
The award for the best MCC is not a trophy, but a sword for Sabrage and this year it was collected with alacrity and joy by Nuy Winery for their Nuy Legacy Celine MCC with the African Cellar Suppliers MCC TROPHY

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