You bring the thunder. I’ll bring the Pinot.

Where I’m from thunderstorms dominate the sky in summer. They are mighty in their magnitude and brutal in force. These storms roll in from the west in a magnificent display of temper. Dark and brooding at first with a sudden switch to fury, there is nothing mild about these Free State storms. They are intense, wild and incredibly sexy. When these storms gather in the skies I open a bottle of Pinot Noir – because there is only one varietal to drink when nature displays her rage, and that is a sensual Pinot Noir. She brings the thunder and I bring the wine.

Pinot Noir is sexy. A great Pinot is dead sexy – and calls for an epic storm.  Continue reading

Bordeaux-style white blends on the catwalk

Christian Lacroix versus Coco Chanel

There is much to be said in praise of the Bordeaux-styled white blend. When done right this classic blend of Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon has the potential to offer mind-blowing drinking. Yesterday this theme was explored at my monthly tasting with wine club Bald & The Beautiful, and the feeling was that, like with fashion, what was in vogue yesterday isn’t necessarily the fashion today.

Sticking to this analogy, my observations follow the logic that some of these wines are as classic as Coco’s black dress, while others have fallen out of fashion favour and should be treated as shoulder pads. I also encountered a Björk-style wine: appealing simply because it is weird.  Continue reading

I am not a fan of Merlot but…

Everybody who knows me knows I hate Merlot. Local Merlot that is. Green, unbalanced, harsh tannins, bitter finish, boring and acidic are the dominating descriptors I associate with the category. I have noted before that Graeme Read’s Hillcrest Quarry Merlot 2008 is one of a handful of local Merlots I’d actually drink, it being a damn pretty wine as results in the Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show 2011 confirmed. For the rest, I’d be more prone to chuck it than chase it.  Continue reading