Thursday, October 15, 2020

Top Ten Sauvignon blancs. Online presentation with in house dinner from Overture

On Wednesday, we were invited by the SA Sauvignon Blanc Association to watch them reveal the winners of the 2020 Sauvignon Blanc SA Top 10 Competition. It was a video, on line, released at 7 pm. Chef Zola Nene was the compère and Nataniël provided the Entertainment, telling us South African stories between the announcements. A novel way indeed to organise a competition under our current circumstances

And they treated us to a 'virtual' 3 course dinner as, normally, we would have been invited to the awards, which could not be held because of Covid. What a very brilliant idea and so generous, as it was prepared by top Chef Bertus Basson at Overture and delivered to us that morning. And it came with a bottle of Sauvignon Blanc from Du Toits Kloof, which was an entrant in the competition

All Lynne had to do was to follow the instructions and pop the main course into the oven for 40 minutes. Delish
The box that arrived had First National Bank, the Sponsor's, logo
and contained a menu/programme and a sheet of cooking instructions
Everything was still in the cold chain, so we quickly took photographs and put it into our fridge as instructed
until it was time for Lynne to cook
The very precise and helpful cooking instructions
The menu and programme
The starter of gently smoked bream, topped with a light lemon cream and grapes was delicious
and came with basil butter and some ciabatta rolls which were to be heated in the oven
Another accompaniment was very good marinated black olives
The main course before it went into the oven. Duck confit legs and potatoes in duck fat, on a base of truffled white beans. So, almost a cassoulet. Served with Tenderstem broccoli (briefly steamed by the restaurant) and served cold as a salad, sprinkled with roasted sesame seeds and a sweet mustard dressing

The starter with the wine
The following photos were captured on computer from the video:
A happy and very professional Zola Nene announced the programme and the awards
She is a chef who has been one of the Judges on The Great South African Bake off,
is a TV personality and cook, cookbook author and food writer

RJ Botha, Chairman of Sauvignon Blanc South Africa

He made a brief statement about Sauvignon Blanc and the competition. "This year will be remembered as a time to stand together and everyone who entered can therefore rightly be proud of their achievement. In these challenging times, it is a privilege to be able to celebrate South African Sauvignon Blanc worldwide as our country's top seller. We see exciting innovation in style and flavour profiles, as well as diversity in origin with three Top 10 winners from Stellenbosch, two from Elgin, and one each from Breede River, Elim, Worcester, Durbanville and Darling. Congratulations to Diemersdal with their hat trick with the Winter Ferment – the only wine that has shone in the Top 10 for the last three years in a row. Many thanks to our platinum sponsor FNB for their understanding of our industry and their contribution to our success”
Nataniël was the entertainer and told some good South African stories
He has not only established himself as singer, songwriter, producer, director, designer and public speaker,
but also as South Africa’s leading exponent of the solo stage act

The judging panel comprised Dr Winifred Bowman, Cape Wine Master and convener of the panel, De Grendel cellar master Charles Hopkins, wine judge and writer Fiona McDonald and Rüdger van Wyk, winemaker at Stark-Condé Wines. The panel also included protégé judges, Candice Barnes from Boekenhoutskloof, Kelsey Shungking from De Grendel and Victoria Davis from Glenelly
L to R: Rüdger van Wyk, Dr Winifred Bowman, Charles Hopkins, Fiona McDonald, Candice Barnes

How they tasted and kept social distancing in place

The top 20 finalists
We had a brief word from the sponsor of the Awards, Stephan Claassen, provincial Head, First National Bank, Western & Eastern Cape
And here are the winners:
Alvi's Drift Sauvignon Blanc Reserve 2020
Cilmor Limited Edition Sauvignon Blanc 2019
Diemersdal Winter Ferment Sauvignon Blanc 2020
Ghost Corner Wild Ferment Sauvignon Blanc 2018
 Iona Elgin Highlands Wild Ferment Sauvignon Blanc 2019
Kleine Zalze Family Reserve Sauvignon Blanc 2019
Ormonde Chip Off The Old Block Sauvignon Blanc 2019
Paul Cluver Sauvignon Blanc 2019
Stark-Condé Round Mountain Sauvignon Blanc 2019
Stellenbosch Vineyards Southern View Sauvignon Blanc 2020
As part of this year’s competition, Sauvignon Blanc SA is requesting everyone to support the industry by making a contribution to the Vinpro Foundation in support of a student in the wine industry. For more details, visit
Anyone can still view the 2020 Sauvignon Blanc SA Top 10 virtual awards, with celebrity chef Zola Nene as master of ceremonies and master storyteller Nataniël as guest artist, at no cost at
Our main course after cooking. It came with a very good cream sherry vinegar sauce,
which helped to counter the richness of the dish
We enjoyed this after the award ceremony was over
What a wonderful evening and we are so impressed by the superb organisation
The dessert was a Cremora tart. Cremora is a non dairy coffee creamer
It had been turned into a cheesecake on a biscuit base and topped with strawberry slices and strawberry jelly

All content, other than screen capture images, © John & Lynne Ford, Adamastor & Bacchus

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