As the first rain in five months pitter-pattered onto the ancient 17th century thatch of the Forrester homestead on the Helderberg yesterday, no surprises that Chenin Blanc was the largest category in the Top 100 St. James Wines Competition announced to a select group of wine hacks at a St. James B&B the previous evening, with Relax with Dax the most famous.
Spelling mistakes, the digital analogues of printer’s gremlins, have popped up in some blog accounts, with St. James abbreviated to SA. Fully 14% of the SJ stunners are Chenins, which came as no surprise to those sampling ten vertical vintages of benchmark FMC (Full Monty Chenin) yesterday. Heck, if the Monty’s in question, Ken Forrester and Martin Meinert, had entered the vertical lineup (no innuendo intended), there would have been 24 Chenins at the SJ jamboree, while if Eben Sadie had invited Mrs. Kirsten and her friends, the whole competition would have been Chenin. As it was, the Forrester flag was flown by middle sister, the Forrester 2010 Reserve Chenin, which is far from reserved.
But enough of the SJ shenanigans which caused one diner at yesterday’s slap-up follow-up lunch at 96 Winery Road to make a hasty departure, proclaiming the SJ circus to be a money-making racket when cyber goddess Fiona Phillips opined the SJ jinx were good for sales.
I was much more interested in the news that Fiona’s financial trader better half is growing truffles in Robertson. At last, a hedge fund with potential. Seems that limestone and oaks are the essential ingredients for this gastronomic indulgence and Robertson has both in abundance. Is there nothing they cannot do on the wrong side of the mountain? Just now Rietvallei will announce a competition for the Top 100 Wines in the World with ostrich feathers awarded when the results are announced, so everyone could have a good laugh like they do in St. James.