Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Media preview of the Biltong and Pinotage festival at Perdeberg Winery

This year's festival will be held on the weekend of the 14th and 15th of April at Perdeberg Wine Cellar in Voor Paardeberg, easy to get to: down the N1 and turn off at the R44 towards Wellington, then left at Windmeul winery. Tickets are available in advance from or at R200 (and R230 on the gate depending on availability). You will get a wine glass to keep, and can taste 18 Pinotages that have been paired with 18 biltong flavours, which will be marked off the card as you taste them. The wine farms involved will also be bringing other wines and you can taste these as well at no charge. There will be live music, food trucks, craft beers, cheese platters and a play area for children. Sounds like a wonderful day. Dress code is purple and white. Saves having to wash out any Pinotage splashes!
First we had a briefing then a taste of some Perdeberg wines. Participating Wineries are: Badsberg Winery, Beyerskloof, Boland Cellar, Bonnievale Wines, Delheim Wines, Flagstone Winery , Grande Provence Heritage Wine Estate , Idiom Collection, Knorhoek Wines, Lanzerac Wines, Mellasat Vineyards, Overhex Wines International, Perdeberg Cellar , Rhebokskloof Wine Estate, Simonsvlei Winery, Stellenbosch Hills Wines, Van Loveren Vineyards, Wellington Wines
And then a taste of the five different biltongs from Afrifoods & Butcher. All set out on the table to see how we liked the pairings. We liked the smoked biltong very much, they have plain beef, beef with some fat, chilli, Kudu and droë wors. These will be paired with the 18 Pinotages. They are moist and flavourful
There is also droewors (dried sausage)
 Pairing time in the tasting centre, eating lots of biltong
Perdeberg’s range of wines. Many are multiple award winners, especially their Barrel Fermented Dryland Chenin, one of our all time favourites and a 2017 Platter 5 star wine
Cobie van Oort of CVO Marketing, the organiser of the festival with Johan van Dyk, who is Perdeberg's marketing manager
Etienne Louw, Head of the Pinotage Association, with a bottle of his own Pinotage based Cape blend, "42"
Next we were ushered into the formal tasting room where they had some fun for us. We were given four wines: Vineyard Collection Shiraz, Pinotage, Malbec and the Rooted Merlot. We were asked to make a blend using the wines the only stipulation being that we must use 30 to 70% of the Pinotage
On the table were some of the ripe grapes and two Vleis (meat) croquettes made with biltong and potato and topped with peppadews, just in case we got peckish while working. Nice touch
The blending wines. The Malbec was our Wine of the Week on 7th March
We had a lot of fun. First you taste the component wines and then you start to blend using a small measure. We all made about four different blends. John and I tasted each other's and we didn’t make the same blend. When you have found one you really like, you make the blend in the large measure and pour it into one of the empty bottles they supplied, together with labels on which we entered our names. These were then corked and were ours to take home. (We put our two in the cellar to mature!) You also put a glass in the front of your station for the winemaker to taste. She was the judge. The winner was Elmarie Berry. Her winning blend had 30% Pinotage, 50% Merlot and 20% Malbec
Then it was time for some lunch
Each couple was served this tray of food called the Perdeberg Tapas Picnic. This will be available on the day of the festival and costs R300; it serves 2 generously. Sticky chicken wings, breaded pork belly topped with mayonnaise, Greek salads with lots of garlic, tiny chicken tacos, potato wedges (they needed a bit more cooking) and, for dessert, pannacotta topped with berry compote. A good deal
The handsome young man who runs the tasting room could easily be an understudy for Denzel Washington

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