I attended the Nederburg Wine Dinner at Pali Village Cafe recently hosted by Aspri Spirits. Jacobus Whilhem Pienaar, Wine Maker at Nederburg and Jan De Bruyn from Distell co hosted the event. It was an interesting evening drinking wines I am quite well versed with. The Nederburg Sauvignon Blanc, Shiraz and Pinotage were all great and kept coming all through out the dinner.
We had an interesting conversation with Jacobus on the style of wines preferred in India and the price we as consumers are willing to pay in general. Having worked directly with Distell while I was at Sula Vineyards it was great to interact with the team again. Conrad Dsouza at Pali Village Cafe put together an outstanding menu, the most notable of which was the dessert which had Amarula as its base.
Times City featured the All Things Nice Asterix and Obelix Dinner at Cafe Zoe.
Click on the link to see what they said about the dinner http://timescity.com/blog/asterix-obelix-feast-things-nice-cafe-zoe/#.Um3_jJrl2E4.twitter
All Things Nice was invited to Sula Vineyards for a celebration that marked the rebranding of Sula’s sparklers. The new labels are cleaner and more in tune with what we would look for in a label today. Rajeev conducted a tasting of their Brut, Brut Rose and Seco speaking briefly of Sula’s history and the Indian wine market in general. The Tasting Cellar in place of Sula’s bottling room is new too. Exposed brick, warm lighting, a sprinkle of barrels and a very long tasting table makes this a winner giving us another great reason to visit the winery.
Spain is a hot, dry, mountainous country with more vineyard land than any other nation on Earth. It ranks third in the world in wine production, after France and Italy. We at ATN have a soft corner for Spanish wines; they are reasonably priced, less complicated and just as enjoyable as their European neighbours.
There are several types of unique grapes and wines being produced throughout the entire country, offering everything from a fruity white wine to a full-bodied, bold red; so there is a wine for every person, at every price range.
Spainhas over 70 (Quality-Approved) wine regions and has more vineyards planted to land than any other country in the world. The most important region for premium Spanish reds is Rioja. The main grape for this moderate climate region is Tempranillo. One of the pleasures of life – sipping on the classic Rioja with bites of tapas in a small wine bar in Madrid!
Rioja gives full or medium-bodied reds with medium acidity, medium tannins and red fruit flavours. It is often blended with Grenache, giving it spicy notes and higher alcohol. Much of the character of traditional style Riojas comes from the oak ageing. Oak ageing softens the tannins and gives sweet coconut and vanilla flavours to the wine. Over time some very savoury animal and vegetable flavours can develop.
Another famous wine region is the Ribera Del Deuro producing premium quality red wines from Tempranillo with black fruit notes and toasty oak flavours. Try a wine from this region with juicy Spanish chorizo for the ultimate Spanish experience.
In Navarra, Tempranillo is often blended with international grape varietals such as Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon. Priorat and Catalunya are two other regions you should look out for, both produce fantastic Tempranillo/Grenache blends.
Spainalso produces some interesting whites, the most famous being the Albarino primarily from Rias Baixas. These are light to medium bodied wines with fresh green and citrus fruit on the palate. These are usually unoaked with refreshing high acidity. A wide range of white styles are produced in Catalunya with local as well as international grape varieties such as Chardonnay. The traditional white Rioja is full-bodied with nutty, oaky flavours, though unoaked styles are also available.
Cava is the Spanish term for traditional-method sparkling wines. The main grape varietals used are local Spanish ones. The wines have fairly neutral fruit flavours, medium acidity and very little complexity. The next time you have a celebration, we suggest you open a bottle of Cava. It’s crisp and delightful and is much easier on the pocket than its French cousin,Champagne.
Spanish wines qualify by age of maturation, or are classified by time spent in oak and bottle. A young wine without ageing is Sin Crianza. A wine that has at least two years’ maturation can be called Crianza. A Reserva must be aged for at least three years of which one must be in oak barrels and Gran Reserva five years ageing in total with a minimum of two years in barrel.
On your next visit to Spain make sure you plan a trip to atleast one of these remarkable vineyards as Spain has some of the most beautiful vineyard landscapes in the world!
Raspberry-Lemon Olive Oil Cake
200 grams sugar
4 lemons- zest
26 grams room temperature milk
245 grams flour
8 grams baking powder
2 lemons- juice
100 grams butter- melted
185 grams extra-virgin olive oil
250 grams fresh raspberries
Mix the sugar and the lemon zest. Add the eggs, one by one to the mixture.
Next add the milk.Mix the flour and the baking powder together and add this to the mixture. Add the lemon juice, melted butter and the extra-virgin olive oil.
Pour half of the batter into a spring-form pan lined with butter paper and add the raspberries in an even layer. Cover with the remaining batter.
Bake it for 30 to 35 minutes at 180 degrees.