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Jancis tastes Dombeya

Date: Wed, Nov 11, 2009 Winery Blogs

by Angie Tieling



When it come to big names in the world of wine writing, they don't come much bigger than Jancis Robinson. If you had to name the five leading names of wine criticism, then doubtless you would come up with her in there somewhere. A prolific writer and author of numerous books (including the Oxford Companion to Wine), she also has that marker of greatness in any field of endeavour- being known universally by her first name alone.

Jancis popped by to taste the Dombeya range in London last month at the Mega Tasting in Earls Court. Here are her reviews on the wines tasted,

Dombeya Sauvignon Blanc 2009 (Stellenbosch) 16.5
Drink 2009-10
Firm, mineral nose - tastes more like Sancerre than anything else, and is quite a bit cheaper than most Sancerres are at the moment. Already quite open with a beginning, middle and end.

Dombeya Samara 2005 (Stellenbosch) 16.5 Drink 2008-12
36,000 bottles of this blend of 55% Cabernet Sauvignon, 40% Merlot, 5% Malbec. Very dark and interesting. Already mellow and complete. A very slightly stern streak but it spreads across the palate admirably.

Dombeya Merlot 2007 (Stellenbosch) 16 Drink 2010-14
Sweet and pruney. Good freshness. Tight finish. Serious wine.14.5%

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Seeing double- Two Tri-Nations Trophies!

Date: Thu, Nov 5, 2009 Winery Blogs

by Angie Tieling



We were excited to have the opportunity to catch up with Springbok coach Peter de Villiers last week. He's a busy man, with one of the highest profile jobs in the country- it's often said that more people know who the national rugby coach is than the president. Whether that's true or not these days we're not sure, but being fans of the bok's we sure know, and appreciated the fact that we could grab a piece of his time.

The reason was to present him with a bottle of our Tri-Nations winning Haskell Pillars Syrah 2007 as a celebration of winning the Tri-Nations rugby this year over Australia and New Zealand. For good measure he bought along the Tri-Nations trophy, and Rianie bought along hers as well for a little photo opportunity. Peter was apparently great value and we hope that he got to drink most of the bottle himself without having to share it with his forward pack!

Read Full Wine Blog Post

Seeing double- Two Tri-Nations Trophies!

Date: Thu, Nov 5, 2009 Winery Blogs

by Angie Tieling



We were excited to have the opportunity to catch up with Springbok coach Peter de Villiers last week. He's a busy man, with one of the highest profile jobs in the country- it's often said that more people know who the national rugby coach is than the president. Whether that's true or not these days we're not sure, but being fans of the bok's we sure know, and appreciated the fact that we could grab a piece of his time.

The reason was to present him with a bottle of our Tri-Nations winning Haskell Pillars Syrah 2007 as a celebration of winning the Tri-Nations rugby this year over Australia and New Zealand. For good measure he bought along the Tri-Nations trophy, and Rianie bought along hers as well for a little photo opportunity. Peter was apparently great value and we hope that he got to drink most of the bottle himself without having to share it with his forward pack!

Read Full Wine Blog Post

WOSA generic Mainz – Germany

Date: Mon, Oct 26, 2009 Winery Blogs

by Rianie Strydom



Last weekend I flew to Mainz in Germany for the WOSA generic tasting. Mainz is about 20-30 min drive from Frankfurt and build on the Western river bank of the Rhine River

Mainz is one of the centers of the German wine economy as a center for wine trade and the seat of the state's wine minister. Due to the importance and history of the wine industry for the federal state, Rhineland-Palatinate is the only state to have such a department. The city is member of the Great Wine Capitals Global Network. Many wine traders also work in the town. The sparkling wine producer Kupferberg produces in Mainz-Hechtsheim and even Henkell — now located on the other side of the river Rhine — had been founded once in Mainz. The famous Blue Nun, one of the first branded wines, had been marketed by the family Sichel.
The event was started off on the Saturday evening with a 4 coarse food and wine pairing dinner at the Hyatt Regency with only South African wines. The dinner and wine selection was done by Lynn Sheriff MW. A real grand affair and attended by 75 guests that was ready to make the most of this special occasion until early in the morning.
The trade and consumer tasting was held on the Sunday in the ballroom of the same hotel. We had very good exposure and the new vintages of Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc was the most favourite.

To purchase of our wines in Germany you can contact Stephanie Kloos at info@afrika-wein.de|.

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WOSA generic Mainz – Germany

Date: Mon, Oct 26, 2009 Winery Blogs

by Rianie Strydom



Last weekend I flew to Mainz in Germany for the WOSA generic tasting. Mainz is about 20-30 min drive from Frankfurt and build on the Western river bank of the Rhine River

Mainz is one of the centers of the German wine economy as a center for wine trade and the seat of the state's wine minister. Due to the importance and history of the wine industry for the federal state, Rhineland-Palatinate is the only state to have such a department. The city is member of the Great Wine Capitals Global Network. Many wine traders also work in the town. The sparkling wine producer Kupferberg produces in Mainz-Hechtsheim and even Henkell — now located on the other side of the river Rhine — had been founded once in Mainz. The famous Blue Nun, one of the first branded wines, had been marketed by the family Sichel.
The event was started off on the Saturday evening with a 4 coarse food and wine pairing dinner at the Hyatt Regency with only South African wines. The dinner and wine selection was done by Lynn Sheriff MW. A real grand affair and attended by 75 guests that was ready to make the most of this special occasion until early in the morning.
The trade and consumer tasting was held on the Sunday in the ballroom of the same hotel. We had very good exposure and the new vintages of Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc was the most favourite.

To purchase of our wines in Germany you can contact Stephanie Kloos at info@afrika-wein.de|.

Read Full Wine Blog Post

Dombeya at Ginga, Cape Town

Date: Thu, Oct 8, 2009 Winery Blogs

by Angie Tieling



This month, we are featuring a dish of their's that chef Chris suggests would be a great match for the Dombeya Samara bordeaux blend.

Be warned- there is a bit of work involved in this one!

Wellington with Caramelised Red Cabbage and Sauce Albafuro
Ingredients
Mushroom Duxelle
50g dried Porcini mushrooms, rehydrated, cubed
200g fresh mushrooms, wiped, cubed
olive oil
1 Tbsp butter
4 shallots or onion, finely chopped
1 Tbsp brandy or whisky
2 Tbsp cream
½ tsp truffle oil
Maldon sea salt and freshly ground white pepper

Wellingtons
4 x 200g fillet or loin
(beef, ostrich or venison)
2 medium aubergines (brinjals), sliced
oil
salt and pepper
baby spinach
Maldon sea salt and pepper
2 rolls frozen puff pastry
1 egg
sesame seeds

Caramelised red cabbage
1 medium red cabbage, washed and
finely sliced
50g butter
250ml red wine
150ml port
2 Tbsp dark brown sugar
Maldon sea salt and pepper

Sauce Albafuro
200 rich chicken stock
200ml thick cream
75g butter
50g foie gras (optional) or
2 Tbsp soaking liquid from
the dried mushrooms

Garnish
fine beans or asparagus
micro greens (if available)

Mushroom duxelle
Soak dried mushrooms in hot water for 45 minutes until completely soft. Strain off the liquid from the re-hydrated mushrooms (reserve liquid if using for the sauce). If dirty, wipe the fresh mushrooms clean with a cloth, but don't wash them. Chop all the mushrooms into cubes of about ½ cm. Heat a large frying pan over maximum heat, then add a generous splash of olive oil and fry the mushrooms for 3-4 minutes. Turn down the heat to medium, add the butter and shallots (or onion), and cook until translucent (about 6-7 minutes). Add the brandy to deglaze the pan and cook, stirring, for about 3-4 minutes. Once reduced, add the cream. Stir the mixture for 1-2 more minutes and remove from the heat. Season to taste with truffle oil and Maldon sea salt and pepper while hot. Allow to cool.

Wellingtons
This versatile dish can be made equally well with springbok loin, ostrich or beef fillet. If using beef fillet, cut the fillet in half lengthways and then again widthways to create four portions of about 200g, approximately 12-15cm in length and 6cm in thickness. Refrigerate until needed. Once ready to prepare the Wellingtons, oil, season and then sear the meat very quickly (2 minutes maximum) to brown the surfaces of the meat but not cook it. Reserve.

Make sure the aubergine is at least the length of the fillet portions. Slice the aubergines lengthways to give 8
slices, 1cm thick. Brush aubergine slices on both sides with a little oil, season with salt and pepper and sear in a hot dry griddle pan until lightly charred on both sides (6-8 minutes in total). Once seared, remove and pat dry. Finally, wilt the spinach in a hot pan with a small splash of water. This will take only one to two minutes. Once slightly wilted, immediately remove and gently squeeze out excess water. Squeezing out the water is important to avoid making the pastry soggy. Make the Wellingtons as per p181/Wellingtons and set aside in the fridge until needed.

Caramelised red cabbage
In a large frying pan over a low/medium heat, gently sauté sliced red cabbage in butter for 15 minutes until soft. Add the remaining ingredients and cook until caramelised and the liquid is slightly syrupy, stirring often. Be careful not to over-reduce the cabbage liquid or overcook the cabbage as the sugar will burn. Allow to cool.

Sauce Albafuro
This sauce could not be easier to make! While the meat is cooking, reduce the stock in a saucepan for 5-10
minutes until it becomes more syrupy. Add the cream and cook until the sauce thickens and coats the back of a spoon. Blitz cold butter and pâte de foie gras together (if using). Remove sauce from the heat and vigorously whisk in the butter and foie gras, and season carefully to taste. If you can't manage to get pâte de foie gras then simply add butter and a small amount of the dried mushroom soaking liquid to give a subtle mushroom flavour to the sauce. Avoid any pieces of grit which may sink to the bottom of the mushroom liquid. Either way it's a rich simple sauce.

To serve
Pre-heat oven to 190ºC. Brush the Wellingtons all over with beaten egg and sesame seeds just before baking. Place on greased baking tray and bake for between 18-24 minutes (for medium rare). The pastry should be golden brown when cooked. Whilst the Wellingtons are in the oven make the sauce and re-heat the red cabbage. Take the Wellingtons out once cooked and rest for 5-10 minutes. Blanch asparagus or beans in salted water until al dente. Strain and brush with butter, Maldon sea salt and pepper. Serve immediately, garnished with micro greens.

Read Full Wine Blog Post

Dombeya at Ginga, Cape Town

Date: Thu, Oct 8, 2009 Winery Blogs

by Angie Tieling



This month, we are featuring a dish of their's that chef Chris suggests would be a great match for the Dombeya Samara bordeaux blend.

Be warned- there is a bit of work involved in this one!

Wellington with Caramelised Red Cabbage and Sauce Albafuro
Ingredients
Mushroom Duxelle
50g dried Porcini mushrooms, rehydrated, cubed
200g fresh mushrooms, wiped, cubed
olive oil
1 Tbsp butter
4 shallots or onion, finely chopped
1 Tbsp brandy or whisky
2 Tbsp cream
½ tsp truffle oil
Maldon sea salt and freshly ground white pepper

Wellingtons
4 x 200g fillet or loin
(beef, ostrich or venison)
2 medium aubergines (brinjals), sliced
oil
salt and pepper
baby spinach
Maldon sea salt and pepper
2 rolls frozen puff pastry
1 egg
sesame seeds

Caramelised red cabbage
1 medium red cabbage, washed and
finely sliced
50g butter
250ml red wine
150ml port
2 Tbsp dark brown sugar
Maldon sea salt and pepper

Sauce Albafuro
200 rich chicken stock
200ml thick cream
75g butter
50g foie gras (optional) or
2 Tbsp soaking liquid from
the dried mushrooms

Garnish
fine beans or asparagus
micro greens (if available)

Mushroom duxelle
Soak dried mushrooms in hot water for 45 minutes until completely soft. Strain off the liquid from the re-hydrated mushrooms (reserve liquid if using for the sauce). If dirty, wipe the fresh mushrooms clean with a cloth, but don't wash them. Chop all the mushrooms into cubes of about ½ cm. Heat a large frying pan over maximum heat, then add a generous splash of olive oil and fry the mushrooms for 3-4 minutes. Turn down the heat to medium, add the butter and shallots (or onion), and cook until translucent (about 6-7 minutes). Add the brandy to deglaze the pan and cook, stirring, for about 3-4 minutes. Once reduced, add the cream. Stir the mixture for 1-2 more minutes and remove from the heat. Season to taste with truffle oil and Maldon sea salt and pepper while hot. Allow to cool.

Wellingtons
This versatile dish can be made equally well with springbok loin, ostrich or beef fillet. If using beef fillet, cut the fillet in half lengthways and then again widthways to create four portions of about 200g, approximately 12-15cm in length and 6cm in thickness. Refrigerate until needed. Once ready to prepare the Wellingtons, oil, season and then sear the meat very quickly (2 minutes maximum) to brown the surfaces of the meat but not cook it. Reserve.

Make sure the aubergine is at least the length of the fillet portions. Slice the aubergines lengthways to give 8
slices, 1cm thick. Brush aubergine slices on both sides with a little oil, season with salt and pepper and sear in a hot dry griddle pan until lightly charred on both sides (6-8 minutes in total). Once seared, remove and pat dry. Finally, wilt the spinach in a hot pan with a small splash of water. This will take only one to two minutes. Once slightly wilted, immediately remove and gently squeeze out excess water. Squeezing out the water is important to avoid making the pastry soggy. Make the Wellingtons as per p181/Wellingtons and set aside in the fridge until needed.

Caramelised red cabbage
In a large frying pan over a low/medium heat, gently sauté sliced red cabbage in butter for 15 minutes until soft. Add the remaining ingredients and cook until caramelised and the liquid is slightly syrupy, stirring often. Be careful not to over-reduce the cabbage liquid or overcook the cabbage as the sugar will burn. Allow to cool.

Sauce Albafuro
This sauce could not be easier to make! While the meat is cooking, reduce the stock in a saucepan for 5-10
minutes until it becomes more syrupy. Add the cream and cook until the sauce thickens and coats the back of a spoon. Blitz cold butter and pâte de foie gras together (if using). Remove sauce from the heat and vigorously whisk in the butter and foie gras, and season carefully to taste. If you can't manage to get pâte de foie gras then simply add butter and a small amount of the dried mushroom soaking liquid to give a subtle mushroom flavour to the sauce. Avoid any pieces of grit which may sink to the bottom of the mushroom liquid. Either way it's a rich simple sauce.

To serve
Pre-heat oven to 190ºC. Brush the Wellingtons all over with beaten egg and sesame seeds just before baking. Place on greased baking tray and bake for between 18-24 minutes (for medium rare). The pastry should be golden brown when cooked. Whilst the Wellingtons are in the oven make the sauce and re-heat the red cabbage. Take the Wellingtons out once cooked and rest for 5-10 minutes. Blanch asparagus or beans in salted water until al dente. Strain and brush with butter, Maldon sea salt and pepper. Serve immediately, garnished with micro greens.

Read Full Wine Blog Post

Dombeya Chardonnay wins Best New World white in Decanter Magazine

Date: Tue, Sep 29, 2009 Winery Blogs

by Wikus Pretorius



OK, so we are a little embarrassed about this one. The award was handed out in the January edition of Decanter Magazine, and we completely missed it. To be fair, no-one told us either, and as we'd prefer to have someone else to blame for this rather than accept the fact that we dropped the ball, we've decided that it is all Decanter's fault!

So whilst it is old news, we're still very chuffed. And old news being what it is, we'll just leave it at that and move on!

Read Full Wine Blog Post

Dombeya Chardonnay wins Best New World white in Decanter Magazine

Date: Tue, Sep 29, 2009 Winery Blogs

by Wikus Pretorius



OK, so we are a little embarrassed about this one. The award was handed out in the January edition of Decanter Magazine, and we completely missed it. To be fair, no-one told us either, and as we'd prefer to have someone else to blame for this rather than accept the fact that we dropped the ball, we've decided that it is all Decanter's fault!

So whilst it is old news, we're still very chuffed. And old news being what it is, we'll just leave it at that and move on!

Read Full Wine Blog Post

More Gold for Dombeya

Date: Thu, Sep 17, 2009 Winery Blogs

by Angie Tieling



This time in Switzerland, where the Dombeya Samara 2005 picked up a Gold Medal at the 2009 La Selection Wine Awards. Our Swiss importers entered the wine, and overall it also finished equal 5th behind four dessert wines from Austria and Switzerland, again proving its consistency across numerous shows and competitions all over the world. This of course follows on from its double-gold medal at the Michelangelo Awards last year and its Top 10 ranking in South Africa at the Calyon Trophy for Bordeaux blends.

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Dombeya Chardonnay 2007 wins Gold at 2009 Tri-Nations Challenge

Date: Thu, Sep 17, 2009 Winery Blogs

by Angie Tieling



More good news from the Tri-Nations Challenge just completed. The Dombeya Chardonnay 2007 was again chosen to compete in the Chardonnay class, and to our delight, won a gold medal.

To put this in perspective, we were in an open class against the very best Chardonnay's from South Africa, Australia and New Zealand. Some of the wines retail around the $100 mark, including superstars like Leeuwin Estate and Yattarna. The Dombeya Chardonnay, in US$ terms, retails around $10 in South African rand tems. Too cheap, of course, and a source of great teeth gnashing from us, but a bargain for the savvy Dombeya drinkers in the homeland.

Some of the other gold medal winners this year were Leeuwin Estate, Yattarna, Ata Rangi and Chamonix. It has been a great year for Dombeya.

Read Full Wine Blog Post

More Gold for Dombeya

Date: Thu, Sep 17, 2009 Winery Blogs

by Angie Tieling



This time in Switzerland, where the Dombeya Samara 2005 picked up a Gold Medal at the 2009 La Selection Wine Awards. Our Swiss importers entered the wine, and overall it also finished equal 5th behind four dessert wines from Austria and Switzerland, again proving its consistency across numerous shows and competitions all over the world. This of course follows on from its double-gold medal at the Michelangelo Awards last year and its Top 10 ranking in South Africa at the Calyon Trophy for Bordeaux blends.

Read Full Wine Blog Post

Dombeya Chardonnay 2007 wins Gold at 2009 Tri-Nations Challenge

Date: Thu, Sep 17, 2009 Winery Blogs

by Angie Tieling



More good news from the Tri-Nations Challenge just completed. The Dombeya Chardonnay 2007 was again chosen to compete in the Chardonnay class, and to our delight, won a gold medal.

To put this in perspective, we were in an open class against the very best Chardonnay's from South Africa, Australia and New Zealand. Some of the wines retail around the $100 mark, including superstars like Leeuwin Estate and Yattarna. The Dombeya Chardonnay, in US$ terms, retails around $10 in South African rand tems. Too cheap, of course, and a source of great teeth gnashing from us, but a bargain for the savvy Dombeya drinkers in the homeland.

Some of the other gold medal winners this year were Leeuwin Estate, Yattarna, Ata Rangi and Chamonix. It has been a great year for Dombeya.

Read Full Wine Blog Post

We Win!!

Date: Mon, Sep 14, 2009 Winery Blogs

by Angie Tieling



Ok, it's not Dombeya, but same genus and species. We will be releasing another brand to the market in November ( Haskell), a project that we have been working on for over four years with an eye to making wines that are seen as being amongst the best that South Africa is capable of producing.

We're off to a good start. This week, the Haskell Pillars Syrah 2007 became the first South African wine ever to win the prestigious Tri Nations Challenge against Australia and New Zealand. The field for this event is unique because it is made up of the best wines from each country, with entry by invitation only.

In doing so, the Pillars 2007 won the Trophy for Best Shiraz(Syrah), Best Red Wine, and Best Wine of Show. In the history of the competition, no South African wine has ever won either category. To say that it has created a stir would be an understatement. Rianie flew to Sydney on Friday to collect her gongs and we're all very excited about what is ahead for the both brands.

We're still in the process of getting our website on-line but you can find out a little more about Haskell at www.haskellvineyards.com.

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