MULDERBOSCH WINES……..STELLENBOCH

I KNOW WHAT YOU’RE THINKING, DOESN’T TONY DO ANYTHING OTHER THAN EAT, DRINK AND BE MERRY ?? WELL DEAR READER THE SHORT ANSWER TO THAT IS …NO !!!, WHY SHOULD I GET MYSELF BOGGED DOWN WITH THE MUNDANE THINGS IN LIFE, REALLY, WHY ??

I DIGRESS, A COUPLE OF DAYS AGO IN THE POURING RAIN PAUL AND I FOUND OURSELVES IN THE CAPABLE HANDS OF THE WINE MAKER ANDREW MASON AND HIS AUSSIE ASSISTANT, MICK CRAVEN. WHAT A GREAT AFTERNOON IT WAS TOO.
MULDERBOSCH WINES PRODUCE ONLY ONE RED BORDEUX BLEND CALLED FAITHFUL HOUND, ( I DONT KNOW, I DONT KNOW, I SHOULD HAVE ASKED BUT I DIDN’T). THIS WILL GIVE YOU THE REASON (IF YOU NEED ONE) TO CALL ALONG AND ASK THEM AND AT THE SAME TIME ENJOY THEIR WINES. CHARDONNAY, SAUVIGNON BLANC AS WELL AS THEIR STUNNING CABERNET SAUVIGNON ROSE.

THE RESTAURANT HAS JUST COME UP WITH THE GREAT IDEA OF WINE PAIRING WITH MINI PIZZAS. SOUNDS ODD I KNOW, BUT TRUST ME A LOT OF THOUGHT HAS GONE INTO THIS CONCEPT AND IT WORKS REALLY WELL.

A LITTLE SNIPPET OF INFORMATION FOR YOUR TITILATION IS THAT MARVELLOUS WINES ARE CREATING SOME STUNNING WINES WITH THE HELP AND ADVICE OF BOTH ADAM AND MICK, THERE IS A LITTLE WORK TO BE DONE BEFORE THE PRODUCTS ARE READY TO BE LAUNCHED BUT I CAN ASSURE YOU THEY ARE GOING TO BE REAL SHOW STOPPERS………WATCH THIS SPACE !!

HAVE A GREAT WEEKEND BOYS AND GIRLS, BE KIND TO EACH OTHER AND SAY A SPECIAL LITTLE SOMETHING FROM YOUR HEARTS FOR MADIBA, BLESS HIM. XX

…… WAVERLEY HILLS WINE ESTATE……

WHEN MEANDERING THROUGH THE STUNNING TULBAGH COUNTRYSIDE LAST WEEK (SEE MY BLOG TULBAGH REVISITED) I REMEMBERED THAT WAVERLEY HILLS WINE ESTATE WAS CLOSE BY IN THE HILLS OUTSIDE THE QUAINT TOWN OF WOLSELEY. NOT BEING ONE TO LET OPPORUNITIES PASS ME BY, I TOOK A LEFT FORK AND HEADED FOR THE PLACE.

THE ESTATE IS LOCATED HIGH ON A HILL (SHADES OF THE SOUND OF MUSIC HERE) WITH THE MOST AMAZING VIEWS FROM THEIR BEAUTIFUL RESTAURANT TERRACE. WE HAD A ‘LIGHT LUNCH’ OFF THEIR SPECIALS MENU, A GORGEOUS CHICKEN AND CHORITZO PIZZA WITH LOADS OF AVOCADO AND CAMEMBERT, WHATS A GIRL TO DO ???

WE KNOW THE STUNNING ORGANIC WINES FROM WAVELEY HILLS ESPECIALLY THEIR RED BLEND SMV, SHIRAZ, MOURVEDRE, VIOGNIER. IT TRULY IS A SPECIAL WINE WITH A FULL FRUITY PALATE. ALL WAVERLEY HILLS WINES ARE AVAILABLE AT WELLNESS WHAREHOUSE AS WELL AS MANY MANY WINE SHOPS ALL ACROSS THE WESTERN CAPE.
I WENT FOR THEIR CABERNET SAUVIGNAN ROSE, I LOVE A CHILLED GLASS OF ROSE ON A SUNNY AFTERNOON WHILST SITTING ON THE TERRACE LOOKING OUT OVER THE REST OF THE WORLD….RUDE NOT TO REALLY !!

WAVERLEY HILLS ALSO PRODUCE SOME OF THE BEST ORGANIC OLIVE OILS AND I CAN HIGHLY RECCOMEND YOU STOCK UP WHEN YOU PAY THEM A VISIT.

YOU CAN CONTACT WAVERLEY HILLS ON 0232310002 OR EMAIL ON INFO @ WAVERLEY HILLS.CO.ZA…….ENJOY THE DAY AND BE GOOD.XX

TULBAGH REVISITED ……

The drive to Tulbagh from Cape Town usually takes one and a half hours, you take the N1 from Town take junction 41 (Wellington and Klapmuts) and then head for Wellington and Tulbagh is signposted from there, easy peasy.!!
The drive through the countryside outside Wellington and to Tulbagh is stunning, dramatic Mountains as a backdrop to the rolling green hills. Even in summer the scenery is green and inviting, love it, I want to live there….anyone paying attention here ?? xx

Tulbagh itself is situated in a very fertile valley in the Winterhoek Mountains calling itself the Valley of Abundance and it certainly is and we’re not just talking vegetation here.
The area is littered with Wine Estates and farms all producing the most delicious produce just waiting to be sampled……..SAY NO MORE …….red rag to a bull here Tony, now which way to go, left, right or follow yer nose ?? You got it in one dear reader, I headed for the hills which (roughly speaking) is the direction of my nose !!
Now I could not possibly visit all that the Valley had to offer but I had bloody good go dahling !!

We stayed at Bains Barn which is centrally located in Church street. Bains Barn is a stunning little converted outhouse/barn/tool shed and belongs to Mother and Daughter Hoenene Roux and Monique Fourie.
They have created a beautiful space to stay with all the mod cons you could hope for, you may contact them on www.bainsbarn.co.za, tell them I sent you.
Apart from them being the perfect hosts they are a mine of information and advice for the new boy in Town, where to go (and where not too!).Lovely people really as is Moniques husband Hendrick, he has nothing to do with the day to day running of the Barn(just as well probably!!) but again knows the area like the back of his hand

I visited the historic Twee Jonge Gezellen Estate home of the delightful Krone Methode Cap Classique range. My personal favourite being the Brut Rose, perfect colour, great nose so……..whats a girl to do ??
I was also introduced to their new wine a superb Chardonnay/Pinot Noir blend, perfectly balanced (not me, the wine!!) and I’m sure it will be a winner as with their other masterpieces.
The cellar manager Luke was extremely helpful and knowlegable as befits one of the sons of the owner…..
The other son, Matthew is the wine maker and recently voted sexiest wine maker in Cape Town !!! What that has to do with anything is beyond me (Tony really) but I just thought I would throw it out there for your information and titilation!!. You can find pictures and other information on www.the houseofkrone.co.za

Saronsberg Estate, just next door to Krone, is a stunning architectual masterpiece as well as producing beautiful wines and being home to an excellent Art and Sculpture gallery, showcasing the talents of a number of very talented local artists.
Their wines are first class in particular the Viognier 2011 always a winner for me, I just love good Viogniers and haven’t mastered the art of refusing tastings of same. My Mum always used to say (bless her) that if you dont like it spit it out……WELL I LIKED IT. What can I say ??
The flagship Shiraz 2011 is an absolute delight as is the straw wine 2006, a dessert wine where the grapes are dried on (yes you’ve guessed it) straw before being processed, producing a wine of individual taste which I loved. (its that NO word again creeping in)

Lemberg is a very old Estate producing stunning wines their red blend of Shiraz, Pinotage and Pinot Noir, loved it and thanks to Soekie the tasting room manager, I was never without a drop in my glass. I loved the 2010 Pinotage called Spencer as well as Lady a lovely white blend and really worth taking home. Incedentally the last two wines were named (for reasons best known to themselves)after a couple of the Bulldogs that lurk/hover/frequent the premises. Do what you will with that information, its yours now .

All in all Tulbagh revisited was a wonderful eyeopening idea of mine, YES I WILL TAKE THE CREDIT FOR THIS !! We actually spent a couple of days there seven or eight years ago and encountered what can only be described as raging homophobia, luckily, now that particular avenue of ignorance has disappeared …WHOOSH !!!
We will return definately if only to sample the other wine Estates that I could not get around too, that old drinking and driving thingy rears its head and my ‘designated driver’ was working….bless him !!

Before I leave you I really must mention Vindoux Day Spa for an afternoon or indeed a whole day of pampering facial, massage, body therapies the lot. Vindoux is run by a charming husband and wife team Sophie and Driaan, spoil yourself, you know you’re worth it !! You can contact them on www.vindoux.com or 0232300635. Tell them I sent you please, he owes me a glass of wine !!

Have a great week people and be kind to each other, unless of course you can’t stand the person then………GO FOR IT !!! xx

MISSING VIRGIN !!!

No, dear reader, I am not missing a virgin, in fact I’ll be suprised if ever I knew one. Please keep this clean all you hecklers in the cheap seats !!

Earlier this week ..PAY ATTENTION… I attended the Siris Vintners function at the Double Tree Hotel in Woodstock (previously Upper East Side). They were introducing a whole range of beautiful wines, some well know others not so much, but all great wines nontheless !!The evening was a great success I’m sure, many thanks to Terrance and Bubbles (great name for someone in the wine business, wish I’d thought of it first !!). I look forward to the next one.

I was very impressed by Post House Wines……and this is where the missing virgin rears her beautiful head. We are talking about a delightful ‘floozy’, Petit Verdot/Pinotage blend that is possibly the finest blend of these two varietals I’ve tasted in a long time. They also have a stunning Chenin by the unlikely name of Stamp of Chenin as well as a lovely rich blend called Penny Black.
For some reason the wine maker Nick Gebers chose the first Victorian postage stamps as his inspiration here and the names certainly make one stop and pay attention. Once you’ve tasted them you’ll be getting closer to them, trust me.
www.posthousewines.co.za will help you through the day.

I also stumbled (not literally I don’t think) upon another delightful Chenin from Mullineux Wines, really a special find, keep your eyes and ears posted for this little gem, its going to be a very popular wine I think.www.mullineuxwines.com will find them waiting for you.

The two guys at Alphabetical are an absolute inspiration with their approach to producing and marketing their stunning Vin Ordinaire, way to go guys. I’m sure you’re going places and soon. simon@alphabetical.co.za will find them.

Well boys and girls, my public awaits, its ten o’clock on a Friday morning, the streets are aired, my new shirt needs an outing and I need a haircut, en donces mi voy !!

In closing a special thank you to the lovely Caroline for encouraging me to drink soooo much (all in a good cause I’m told). buen viajie guapiton…she and Alan are off on their ‘European Tour’ in search of the sun and copius bottles of local wines !! xx

LABORIE WINE ESTATE~PAARL

Picture this if you will dear reader. Its a rainy, rainy Saturday morning and the wind is HOWLING!!. I have the log fire blazing away and Paul is about to return from his Massage Training Course.
We have accepted an invitation from Zelda Oelosfe-Cornthwaite the General Manager of Hospitality at Laborie, to spend the weekend with them and “we really should go” but……..come on now Guys you’re going to love it, its showtime !!

Well boys and girls, we are soooo very glad we went. Laborie is a beautiful Estate nestling in the hills of the Paarl valley and was originally founded in the late sixteen hundreds….Its even older than I am !!
The Manor House is charming, retaining all the original features of the ‘homestead’ whilst offering the modern amentities one would expect from a four star Hotel and restaurant.

We were warmly greeted by Martell Smith (Zeldas assistant), with a cheery smile and an equally cheery glass of sherry , rude not to really !!. I must say that the staff at Laborie are such a happy, helpful group of Ladies that its an absolute pleasure to be in their company.

Our accomodation was beautifully appointed with all the mod cons one could expect including and electric blanket (que luquo guapiton !). The soft furnishing were stylish and luxurious whilst the bathroom included both shower and bath of a good size. I say this because often, even in top of the range hotels and guest houses, the bathroom facilities leave a lot to be desired.

After a sherry induced siesta we showered and headed for the Harvest restaurant I had read so much about. The Chef, Matthew Gordon has quite a reputation in Cape Town and we were, understandably, eager to experience his culinary creations !!
I have to say we were not disappointed at all, such a varied and enticing menu would be hard to find fault with. Matthew realy is a clever and creative Man.
Unfortunately for us Matthew was not working at his ‘bench’ that evening but we had the pleasure of meeting his delightful Sous Chef Shirene, she also added her own twist on things, O.K. O.K. …lets start eating now its really getting to that time !!

We began with a stunning selection of starters, deep fried asparagus with beetroot and apple salsa (we have never seen that before, TICK !!), Crayfish Samosas with lightly smoked Salmon mini fish cake balls..TICK !! and smoked Quail with pistachio galantine and duck liver parfait …AWESOME… TICK !!

At this point I should tell you that despite the complimentary Sherry (yes more , and your point ??) we decided upon Labories flagship Shiraz, Jean Taillefert which is undoubtably the finest Shiraz I have ever tasted……..and I’ve tasted some, believe me !!

I digress………for our main courses we had free range duck with caramelised naartjies in a Van der Hum sauce (a local liquer for the ininitiated here amongst us) with a side order of Posh frites,with smoked salt and Parmesan. Free range Karoo lamb rump with a parsley crust and roasted baby veggies, both beautifully cooked and tasty.

Now you would think that after theses delicious treats we would be hard pushed to find a ‘little corner’ for dessert, give me time I’m working on it Chef !!
Our delightful waitron ‘persuaded’ us to try a glass of the Pineau de Laborie to get the taste buds tingling,(they were already, trust me)…….but, its rude not to really. This ceation transports you immediately to the Middle East, raisins,spices,warmth…….Paul said it was like sipping Turkish Delight, and it certainly was. whats a girl to do ?? …….so we did TAH DAH !!

Our stunning desserts were Creme brulee with a chocolate chip rusk also the home made Raspberry Parfait with Autumn berries and that is right up my street, rapberries, blackcurrants,Cape gooseberries etc. que luquo, all this accompanied by the afore mentioned Pineau de Laborie, just heavenly trust me.

Exit stage left and time for bed methinks, is it still raining ?? who cares anyway we have the trusty Laborie umberella and a warm glow !!

The next morning (not too early) we walked across to the Manor House for MORE FOOD !!! whats going on here, por favor.
We both decided on the the full English (patriotic to the last Tony) and what a delight that was too. The housekeeper,Sonja, is second generation Housekeeper as her Mum did it for years and it was a given that Sonja would follow in Mums footsteps, well Sonjas Mum, you taught her well.
We needed a little walk after breakfast, I think about ten miles might have done it but……it was raining cats and dogs, so we made it to the wine tasting room for a spit and swallow (sorry Anel) or that was the plan at least……WHATS A GIRL TO DO ???

Thank you so much everyone at Laborie for making our stay so memorable………… we will return…TRUST ME !!! XX

P.S. PLEASE TAKE A LOOK AT FB AND TWITTER FOR PICS, THE WORDPRESS SYSTEM STILL BEATS ME !!