#Braaiday hosted by Wines of South Africa
Oh Great Britain, how we love you. It rains, it snows, it pours! But honestly, us Brits are happiest when the sun is shining, the bbq is on, and the wine and beers are flowing. At the slight sign of rays of sun, we’re devoted!
Perhaps it was with great pleasure, the #braaiday dinner, hosted by Wines of South Africa (WOSA), took place on a fantastically warm day. It was as though South Africa was transpiring into our humble surroundings and blessing our meal and presence. Us Brits, wait for heat for a barbecue, not a South African, every occasion is braaiderful!
Online Wine Communicators and Wine Merchants
Can you imagine, in South Africa, a whole national holiday is dedicated to the wonder that is braai day. Well in actual fact it is heritage day, a day to acknowledge the many cultures of the vibrant nation, it recently adapted the social cohesion of the braai, by having a day to commemorate the unification of enjoying a barbie with friends and family. Great stuff – it was with this in mind that I set out to the WOSA dinner.
The event was aimed at online communicators, and a handful of leading independent wine merchants were asked to pick wines they felt highlighted the great quality of South African wines.
The splendid locaction was the South African owned High Timber restaurant in the city of London. Founded by by Gary and Kathy Jordan of the esteemed, award winning, Jordan Wine Estate in Stellenbosch,South Africa. The restaurant is managed by their business partner, Neleen Strauss, who also happened to be our maitre d’ for the evening.
The food and wine were splendid. See below for pictures from the evening, and a few of my stand-out wines,
Chargrilled tiger prawns, garlic, chilli, ‘aartappel’ salad with condensed milk dressing – splendid starter! Aartappel is potato!
Apologies for the picture quality.
Traditional South African ‘braaivleis’ (BBQ meat consisting of lamb chop, boerewors and sirloin), served with a ‘braai broodjie’ (BBQ sandwich), coleslaw and a tomato and mushroom skewer.
‘Melktert’ – A milk tart, topped with Amarula cream. I love Amarula, so this dessert was like heaven. Recipes, and further samples of this dessert gladly accepted!
Zevenwacht, The Tin Mine, 2011. A blend of Chenin Blanc, Chardonnay, Viognier and Rousanne. At £12.95, absolutely delightful. Medium bodied, slight oak, pleasant aromas, and complex. Hints or ripe stone fruits, and delicate spice. Can be found at Vagabond Wines.
Eagle’s Nest Viognier 2009, 100% Viognier from Constantia. Typical Viognier characteristics on the nose, peach, apricot and jasmine petals, on the palate, crisp, good balance, lovely finish and longevity. Again, a brilliant find from Vagabond Wines, but on the lower end of special occasion price bracket £22.
The Foundry Syrah 2007 from Swartland is 100% Syrah. 4 words: plum, earthy, pepper, richness. £22.95, Vagabond wines. Interesting wine, but I wouldn’t necessarily rush out to but it. I do like the “Cape of good hope” statement, Ireti means hope!
Elemental Bob ‘My Finite’ Pinotage 2010, from Hemel en Aarde (hadn’t heard of this region before). A beauty, 100% Pinotage, oh how I love a good Pinotage. This was good, orgasmic, memorable, juicy, plump, vibrant!! My favourite of the night, and worth the £25 price tag, it went beautifully with the braai meat, the smokiness of the mains was well complimented by this wine.
Mullineux Schist Syrah 2010, 100% Syrah, from the Swartland region. Divine, but £58.95.
Joostenberg, Noble Late Harvest, 2011. 100% Chenin Blanc, Paarl region. £11.75 from Stone, Vine and Sun.
It was a pleasurable evening, great to meet similar and varied wine communicator and merchants. I was sat near Tom Lorimer of Lea & Sanderman, Stephen Finch, owner of Vagabond Wines in Fulham, South-West London and Peter Turner of The Drinker site.
Pretty pictures in High Timber Restaurant
Thank you Jo Wehring and Claudia Brown for organising!
Do you have a favourite South African wine? Leave a comment below and let me know.