Thursday, October 18, 2018

This Week’s MENU. FNB Sauvignon Blanc Top 10, Relaunch of SALT at Paul Cluver, Constantia Royale Sauvignon 2018 launch, Veritas public tasting, birthday party for two veterans, Coronation Chicken, Tasting Villion wines, Villion Shiraz

A wheat field near Philadelphia, Swartland, Western Cape
We’re looking forward to a quiet weekend, just the two of us, relaxing. We’ve had an exceptionally active week and we’ve been trying to ignore bronchitis and a cold. Thank heavens the events we’ve been to have been great fun; it would have been murder if we’d had to attend “duty” functions while managing coughs, wheezes and sneezes. We hope you’ll enjoy seeing our stories about them. This year is ending with some spectacular wine-tasting opportunities which will let you share in some of our action. Please go to our Dates for your Diary below the Wine of the Week in MENU, have a look at them and make your booking
2018 FNB Sauvignon Blanc Top 10 Awards at Landtscap, Stellenbosch      
The announcement of the top 10 South Africa Sauvignon Blancs was held last week at the magnificent Landtscap venue which overlooks the Devon Valley in Stellenbosch. Proudly sponsored by First National Bank, they really pushed the boat out and we had a superb celebration. The early evening views over the valley towards the blue mountains in the distance are exceptional. There were three food stations…
Relaunch of SALT at Paul Cluver wine estate, Elgin      
The anticipation of enjoyment when we are invited to the media launch of a newish restaurant which has been open for several months but has not been very vocal while they started up, is always good. When it is on an iconic wine farm only 1 hour from Cape Town, the excitement increases. And when we learned that the chefs involved are some of Cape Town's best, we could not wait to see what was on offer. Chef Craig Cormack runs The Goose Roasters with his partner Beau du Toit, where they do catering, training, functions, private dining and pop ups at festivals and markets and so much more. This is a new venture for them. Chef Mechell Spann is the chef in residence at Salt. Craig is also an expert on salt, its history and its uses and he had a huge collection of salts on show in the restaurant. He lectures about it worldwide. And you can taste it on the table and in the food. It is a lovely, open and airy restaurant…
Constantia Royale Sauvignon 2018 launch and Nova Zonnestraal cellar opening   
For several years we celebrated special events with dinner at Parks, the restaurant operated in a lovely Victorian house at the foot of the hill in Wynberg by Michael Olivier. We didn't know it at first, but it was part of the Zonnestraal Estate, owned at the time by Reg Parker. We'd been told that Mr Parker turned the old house into a restaurant so that he could entertain his friends without having to leave his estate. Most Capetonians have driven through the estate for the last 30 or so years because, when the M3 Blue Route freeway was built, it divided the estate. As this separated the two halves of the farm, a tunnel was built under the freeway to allow access between them. This tunnel has now been transformed into the storage cellar for the farm's wines and we were invited to the opening…
2018 Veritas public tasting at the CTICC    
The annual Veritas Awards, which is the longest running and most prestigious wine and brandy competition in South Africa, dating back to 1991, and is said by Bennie Howard CWM, who was the MC of the evening, to be the "Oscars of the South African Wine World". The Public tasting of Veritas Gold and Double Gold winners was held at the CTICC. There will be a tasting in Johannesburg on Tuesday 23rd October, followed by tastings in other centres. Details of these and other events are in MENU, Dates for your Diary. A full list of the Double Gold, Gold and Silver medal winners can be seen at
A birthday party for two wine industry veterans    
These two large and much loved wine personalities are celebrating their 70th birthdays this month and we were delighted to be invited to join them both to celebrate. Allan Mullins, CWM and Wine Selector for Woolworths, turned 70 on Tuesday this week and Peter Finlayson of Bouchard Finlayson will do so next week on the 24th. The party was held at Bouchard Finlayson wine estate in the Hemel en Aarde Valley last Sunday and was so much fun. The party was held inside…
Tasting Villion wines in Bot River    
On the way back from the party and our overnight stay in the Hemel and Aarde, we stopped off at Barton Wine estate, which we have been meaning to visit for a long time; it has been closed on the previous occasions we have tried. It is in the Bot River wine ward, but all is not what it seems. Cellarmaster viticulturist PJ Geyer has now left and owners Annie and Suzie Neill are living in the UK. There is still some Barton wine on the farm to taste and buy, however. The farm has been leased to Villion wines and they are about to renovate the tasting room. We had a very pleasant tasting of Villion wines with Chanel van der Berg and a tasting of the Barton Rosé. The Villion wines are made by Kobie Viljoen, previously winemaker at Gabriëlskloof, and all the grapes are bought in…
On the MENU this week. The classic Coronation Chicken recipe     
From the Constance Spry Cookery book with Rosemary Hume. This dish was invented for, and served at, the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II in 1953. See it here…
MENU’s Wine of the Week. Villion Syrah 2016    
We have had some superb wines this week but this one stayed in our taste memories. Our pick of Sauvignons Blanc and our favourite Chardonnay have both already been our wine of the week in the past and probably will be again. From Villion Family Wines on Barton Estate in Bot River. R150 a bottle on the farm and very good value for this quality of Shiraz. Made by winemaker and owner of Villion, Kobie Viljoen, until recently winemaker at Gabriëlskloof. It was our favourite wine in the tasting we had on the farm. Savoury from the small amount of Mourvedre added, with violets, spice, dark cherry, and elegance on the big nose. There is also a soupçon of Viognier added and this comes across with the soft sweet fruit, lots of spice, ripe juicy black cherries, some red berries and black pepper and cinnamon, A big wine to enjoy with friends over a good dinner of rich food like duck, steak with a sauce or with Christmas dinner      

18th October 2018

© John & Lynne Ford, Adamastor & Bacchus 2018
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Recommendations of products and outside events are not solicited or charged for, and are made at the authors’ pleasure. All photographs, recipes and text used in these newsletters and our blogs are © John & Lynne Ford, Adamastor & Bacchus. Our restaurant reviews are usually unsolicited. We prefer to pay for our meals and not be paid in any way by anyone. Whether we are invited or go independently, we don’t feel bad if we say we didn’t like it. Honesty is indeed our best policy. While every effort is made to avoid mistakes, we are human and they do creep in occasionally, for which we apologise. This electronic journal has been sent to you because you have personally subscribed to it or because someone you know has asked us to send it to you or forwarded it to you themselves. Addresses given to us will not be divulged to any person or organisation. We collect them only for our own promotional purposes. If you wish to be added to our mailing list, please click here to send us a message and if you wish to be removed from our mailing list

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