South Africa’s very own Guernica moment happened 90 years ago next month when the Union government sent an aircraft to bomb the Bondelswarts, a clan of 500 Khoikhoi, who were protesting the imposition of a tax on their dogs by the then South West African Administration. 100 Bondelswarts: men, women and children were killed in the action which pro-rata makes the Spanish Civil War look tame.
Pressing questions (press shown below) are being raised as to how the Swartland came to dominate yesterday’s UCT Top 20 SA wineries poll. First placed Boekenhoutskloof mackintosh-hillhouse-chair Marc Kent, second placed baby Jesus of SA wine Eben Sadie and charming Chris and beautiful Andrea Mullineux in tenth position are all leading lights in the annual Swartland Revolution. An event that poll organizer Tim James is involved with.
Not that any impropriety is implied. After all, that Marc was first past the post is to be expected, as Boekenhoutskloof is Winery of the Year in the 2012 Platter sighted wine guide. But even with ten 2011 Platter pundits voting plus editor Phil, the 2011 Platter Winery of the Year, Nederburg, could not make the Top 20. A fantastic result and quite frankly, unbelievable as Nederburg had three five star stunners in 2012 and a record breaking five in 2011. Nederburg cellarmaster and TV star Razvan Macici must be wondering what you have to do to get into the Top 20! Surely the last shred of credibility at Platter has been lost by this result. Or is the poll perhaps a fix?
Myanmar is the place for Meander Moscato. As the former Burma opens up to the west (“imagine a county of 60 million people without an ATM” says UniWines marketing mogul Pieter Cronje, below) tourists, led by Hilary Clinton, will start flooding in and the delightful Meander Moscato (M&M) with its abstemious 7.5% alcohol and lavish flavours of grape will go well with dishes from a spicy Asian kitchen. At under R35 a bottle, Aung San Suu Kyi can use it to celebrate her election victories next year.
David Cope may protest that he’s not behind the brilliant anotherdamnedfoodblog phenomenon but the sentence “you might lose a fucking shoe” in the review of El Burro is the kind of signature an academic might use to prove that Christopher Marlowe wrote Shakespeare’s plays. After all, who throws a shoe?
Alas, the only person of sufficient talent to write such a blog about booze is Emile Joubert and he seems to be keeping a low profile after his brilliant blog post about the suspiciously childless supercilious eminence of the Grape communal blog. My own thoughts on Tequila in Prestige magazine last month were not in the same league.
A wonderful vignette of the late Princess Margaret dining at Bang Between the Pitons restaurant on St. Lucia in the Caribbean while Led Zeppelin ate banana and Mars Bar sandwiches a few tables along. But what to drink with such an exotic sandwich is the kind of question to exercise sandwich savant Emile Joubert whose Sandwich Showcase was the culinary highlight of the recent Stellenbosch Wine Festival.Read More…
It was standing room only last night in the Clover tent at the Stellenbosch Wine Festival as sandwich sage Emile Joubert made Elvis Presley peanut butter, bacon and banana butties. I was in attendance to slice gherkins for the Cuban pulled pork semi-bunny chows. Quizzed what wine to pour with the Elvis extravaganza, I offered Pinotage as iron banana is a popular style.Read More…
If Elgin is elegantly, what is the Simonsberg?; what is the Swartland? After judging the annual potjiekos grudge cookoff between the two appellations on Saturday, I can offer Sexily Simonsberg and Authentically Swartland as I can’t think of an adverb starting with an “s” that means genuine at the minute. Straight is clearly inappropriate for a region boasting Riebeek-Kasteel (which has much more attractive gays than Greyton, according to RK’s unofficial mayor Anton Espost) and Smallberries has been appropriated by the co-op.
Media guru Emile Joubert compares the latest Shoprite/Checkers TV advert featuring wine impresario Michael Fridjhon to that supermarket’s embracing of Afrikaans cultural chiskop Nataniël to promote boerewors. Matching food and wine could find them both around the braai, which could have serious comedic potential.
Gabriel Savage, writing in The Drinks Business, reckons 2011 will be another tough year for wine in the UK and in particular quotes Adrian Burns on the on-trade market: “South Africa [is] still struggling to make much impression.” A position diametrically opposed to WOSA (Wines of SA, the exporters’ deep throat) CEO Su Birch who told winenews this morning “in the on-trade, South Africa has seen a year-on-year increase in value sales of 23% for 2010.”
So who is right? Having checked out the WOSA program for the upcoming London Wine Trade Fair, Adrian may have a point as the highlight of WOSA’s plan is a “‘beer & biltong’ get together one evening… to which all the buyers and journalists will be invited.” You can’t invent this material!