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I am starting #WINEcember on a high note!
I went for a very interactive Media and Trade tasting by Wines of South Africa (WOSA) in Nairobi on 30th Nov 2017. The event was organised by Winenjiru LTD and the training was done by Beverage Intelligence. WOSA has done 3 other annual trainings like these and been part of more activities in Kenya.
Just to recap, some of the events that WOSA has done in Kenya include:
– WOSA Media and Trade Training held in 2015, 2016 and 2017.
– WOSA Sommelier World Cup 2016.
– Mission #CAPEable
– Cape Wine 2015
We got to taste some incredible wines during the training. We tasted reds and whites. What I loved was how informative and extensive this was. We then got certificates at the end of the day. I will try to explain the tasting notes in simple terms and relax on the wine jargon for a bit. 🙂 PS. These are my personal tasting notes and opinions.
Ataraxia Sauvignon Blanc
This was straw yellow (like the colour of dried grass). It was very light from the *Hemel en Aarde Valley (A region in the Hermanus Wine Route). For this, the main focus of the winemaker was on the intensely flavoured fruits. It was very acidic. Acidity is how you feel saliva gushing from the sides of your mouth when you bite into say, a lemon. It was very refreshing on the palate and it was like a sensory overload when I drank it for the first time. It would be a great aperitif (drink before a meal). It had a little minerality. It is so hard to explain what minerality is but it is like when you are walking down a river and you taste a rock. I remember eating chalk once and that rocky taste and texture is how I would explain minerality. Minerality focuses on the mouthfeel.
Tera Del Capo Pinot Grigio 2016
It is delicious and not quite as aromatic as the above wine. It was light bodied and fresh. Very easy drinking and this would be perfect for a beginner. The flavours are those of green fruits, lemon zest and slight grapefruit. The wine had a light and fresh. There were also peachy and vanilla flavours.
M.A.N Padstal Chardonnay
This wine is from Paarl region of South Africa. It was a well-balanced style of wine with acidity and long-lasting flavour. I was great quality and remarkable. I actually liked this wine because to me, it was excellently balanced. It was slightly oaked. Flavours of citrus and I smelled some melon which was peculiar for me but I will include it here. The beauty of wine tasting is that you can never be wrong. What you taste is dependent on what you are used to/ have tasted. You cannot describe a wine as smelling of kiwi fruits if you have not tasted kiwi. The wine notes are just to guide you. Can be paired with grilled fish or creamy pasta.
Hartenberg Chardonnay 2015
A great wooded chardonnay. Very crisp wine. Matured in French oak barrels. Perfect paired with broccoli, Parmesan cheese, butter.
The Winery Of Good Hope Unoaked Chardonnay
An easy drinking yet great wine. With more freshness and depth. Citrus notes.
Thelema Mountain White
This was a blend of 3 grapes (Viognier, Chardonnay and Roussanne). It was a delicious blend that had peachy flavours and such a crowd pleaser.
For the red wines we started with the light-bodied reds and further proceeded to heavier reds (my favourites). We did this tasting Merlot- Pinotage- Shiraz- Cabernet Sauvignon
Fish Hoek Merlot 2016
This is a great wine for beginners because it is not an in-your-face wine. I have a friend who hates wine. “Hate” is a strong word. Let us say he is not fond of wine but I feel it’s because when I was introducing him to wine, we started with a very intense Cab Sauv instead of a lighter bodied one.
Merlot is a unique wine because when you harvest it early you get light green flavours which are undesirable for red wines but more common in white wine. The red wine flavours include red fruits (plum, raspberry) moving on to more darker fruits (cherry, blackberry).
Neethlingshop Pinotage 2016
Well rounded. Dark red heading on to purplish. More of the darker fruit flavours present (cherry and blackberry). Spicy and flavourful.
Vondeling Baldrick Shiraz (My Favorite for the Day)
Shiraz is the spiciest of all reds. The flavours are liquorice, coffee, blueberry and white pepper (debatable). This was my favourite of the day. It can be paired with spicy steaks and curries. I’m salivating just thinking about this wine and food pairing.
Zonnebloem Cabernet Sauvignon
Also another boldly flavoured wine. It has great ageing potential. Noticeable earthiness and mildly “tobaccoish”. Would go well with lamb chops or a good steak with lots of hot sauce, black pepper and spice.
I will be updating this post when I get the information of wine available in Kenya in case you want to purchase some.
Happy #WINEcember and keep it here for more Wine in Kenya updates on events, offers, wine reviews, recommendations and education.
P/s I have uploaded a bunch of new wine videos that you will enjoy. Peep them on my Youtube Channel.
Winenjiru http://www.winenjiru.com/ @winenjiru on all socials
WOSA http://www.wosa.co.za/home/ @WOSA_ZA
Beverage Intelligence https://www.facebook.com/beverageintelligenceafrica/ @underinfluence twitter