Conjuring up a new concept in a crowded field takes some doing. After a languid lunch at the GlenWood tasting room in early December I have to say “By Jove, I believe they’ve done it!”
GlenWood’s Fine Wine and Food Experience is indeed a fresh take on food and wine pairing.
This is how it works: On arrival, each guest is presented with tastes of six of the estate’s award-winning wines together with a ‘tasting palette’ featuring tastes of six carefully prepared matching dishes. A knowledgeable waiter/tasting room assistant is on hand to explain more about the wines and matching dishes. Once guests have tried all six pairings they get to choose one of them for their main course along with a glass of the matching wine, or one of the others if they’ve hit upon their own favourite pairing during the tasting.
On my visit the following pairings were on offer: Sauvignon Semillon 2016 with Smoked Salmon Trout, Shiraz Vigneron’s Selection 2016 with a ‘Rugby Snack’ (You’ll have to go there yourself to find out what that is!), Chardonnay Unoaked 2017 with Ceviche, Chardonnay Grand Duc 2015 with Chicken Legs, Merlot 2016 with Chicken Caesar Salad and Syrah Grand Duc 2014 with Rump Steak. End your meal with a taste of Noblesse Grand Duc – GlenWood’s maiden noble late harvest.
GlenWood’s wines never fail to impress and certainly live up to the estate’s mantra of Simple, Natural, Quality. While it’s their Chardonnays that tend to steal the limelight – and bucket loads of awards – I have to say that I consider their Sauvignon Blanc Semillon a revelation. Franschhoek isn’t prime Sauvignon Blanc territory, but at GlenWood it benefits from the cooler temperatures of the Robertsvlei Valley. The addition of Semillon – an iconic Franschhoek cultivar – results in a wine that balances frivolity and class and makes its way straight into my list of top 5 summer wines. The Platter’s Wine Guide judges loved the 2015 vintage so much they awarded it five stars in their 2016 guide. The current (2016) vintage claimed four stars in addition to being rated 90 out of 100 points by Winemag.co.za, winning Gold at the SA Women’s Wine Awards and Double Gold at Vitis Vinefera 2017. To top it all off it’s budget-friendly too!
The Tasting Palette can be enjoyed indoors in the tasting room, or outside on the terrace. Take my word for it though; the terrace is where you want to be on a hot summer’s day. Shade, pond, views… need I say more?
The price of the Fine Wine and Food Experience Price including Tasting Palette, main course and glass of wine is R395 per person. As GlenWood only seats 20 guests at a time (fantastic, as you’ll never feel crowded) booking is advised. A vegetarian alternative is offered, but booking is essential for this option.
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