Thursday, November 09, 2017

This Week’s MENU. Aristea launch, Lunch at Buitenverwachting, 2018 Platter, Wine Concepts Champagne, Greek lamb, Wines of the Week

An owl in a Buitenverwachting oak
It has been a week of great wines. The launch of a new international venture, lunch with the new vintage on an historic estate and, one of the big events of the year, revealing the 2018 edition of South Africa's iconic wine guide. Please read on....

An Adventure with Friends, the launch of Aristea Wines    
Matthew Krone has been beavering away for the last few years making his own wines. We were invited with other members of the media and the wine industry, to the launch to taste two of them and to meet his partners in this venture called Aristea at Welgemeend Manor House in Gardens, Cape Town
The partners are Martin Krajewski (wine industry legend from the UK, who also owns vineyards in St Emilion and Pomerol) and Florent Dumeau (renowned Bordeaux winemaker and wine consultant). He told us that they are 'three wine friends' from the UK, France and South Africa, who each already have their own wine brands / wine ventures and many years of accumulated winemaking experience. When he discovered that both partners were going to be in South Africa at the same time, he decided that this was the perfect time to launch two of the wines here. To learn more about the partners and the wines visit, whose name means.....
Lunch at Buitenverwachting with Lars Maack    
We know that we are very privileged indeed to be able to do what we do. This would not be possible without invitations from the industry in which we work and we do appreciate it. So it was great to have lunch this week in the newly refurbished restaurant on the estate with GM Lars Maack, Sandy Bailey who looks after PR for the farm, and one other member of the media, journalist Graham Howe
There was a huge early winter storm in the Cape while we were travelling in Europe in May and during that storm the roof of Buitenverwachting's restaurant blew off. (We were following it on the Net from our laptops as we travelled) This has been replaced and necessitated a refurbishment of the venue. And what an impressive job they have done, with such smart design. The windows look larger and wider, the restaurant is lighter and fresher, the wood that has been used everywhere is so natural and modern and green. At one end of the restaurant..... 
Launch of the 2018 edition of Platter's South African Wine Guide    
It is that time of the year again, so eagerly awaited by most of the wine world; the launch of the New Platter's Wine Guide 2018. This is its 38th year of publication. Publisher JP Rossouw told us that the awards would have a different sequence this year, shortening the ceremony. First the four Highline awards: the Wines of the Year. It has been a year of great quality vintages, both 2015 and 2017 stand out. “Do hold prices”, he said; “stand firm with these wines of international quality”. A five star winner means it scored 95 points or more. The wines nominated by the tasters for 5 stars are tasted blind by a panel which also includes people from outside the team. There is always a huge audience....
Wine Concepts International Champagne and Sparkling Wine Affair    
Join Wine Concepts in celebrating their sixteenth year of staging this prestigious event at the Vineyard Hotel in Newlands, Cape Town, on 17th November from 18h00 to 21h00. Porsche has come on board as a sponsor this year and will be showcasing a couple of their luxury vehicles at the event. Numerous cuvées will be there for tasting from premium and boutique Champagne Houses of France, and, for the first time, we will also have a selection of sparkling wines from other international producers including Spain, Italy and the UK to tantalize your taste buds. You can expect names such as Taittinger, Billecart-Salmon.....
What's on the MENU this week: Greek Lamb Marinade     Summer is breaking out and we are starting to think of outdoor eating and braais (barbeques.) This is the classic way the Greeks have of cooking their lamb. The marinade will help to tenderise and adds lovely flavour too.
Juice of large 2 lemons - 1/4 cup/60 ml extra virgin olive oil - 2-3 cloves garlic, grated or minced - 2 tablespoons/30 ml fresh oregano leaves, finely chopped (or 2 or 3 teaspoons dried oregano) - 1 teaspoon/5 ml fresh thyme leaves - 1 teaspoon fresh rosemary, finely chopped - 1 whole bay leaf - 1 teaspoon/5 ml sea salt - 1/4 teaspoon/1.25 ml freshly ground black pepper
Mix well to emulsify and marinate the lamb for 4 to 5 hours if chops or shanks and 8 to 24 hours for a 2 kilo joint of lamb
Roast or grill the lamb using the marinade as a basting sauce. You can double up the recipe for larger joints of lamb

I used two leg chops and put them under the grill, then sliced them. I served them on some orzo pasta with some of the red peppers and tomato mix from last week's recipe, to which I added some sliced black olives
This week we have two. The first is a beautiful wine, but expensive and only made in small quantities. The second you will find easy to source and is much more affordable. Both would go well with the Greek Lamb.
First - Aristea Chardonnay
It is very Burgundian in style, with a little African sun added. Light wood is present but will soften , a subtle nose with a little stone fruit. The wine has a lovely silky mouth feel and flavours of limes, white peaches, butter and toast with a touch marmalade on the finish. So good to drink. 2016 vintage: R290 a bottle from Matthew Krone
Second and more affordable:
De Wet Chenin Blanc 2016. R35 from the cellar. This perfumed wine must have a little Muscat somewhere as the nose is so floral, perhaps it's a different clone of Chenin Blanc. So fresh and racy on the palate, full of tropical notes with guava and peach, perfect for Mediterranean foods or just for quaffing with friends

The 2017 has just been released. Collect some next time you drive through Worcester. The cellar is on the northern side of the town, next to the N1

In next week’s MENU: Bellevue restaurant, Ocean Basket Mediterranean, Groote Post Seasalter, White blends
9th November 2017

© John & Lynne Ford, Adamastor & Bacchus 2017
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