Menings/Views

Menings oor wyn en wynverwante aangeleenthede/Views on wine and wine related maters. bacchus@planeetwyn.co.za.

South Africa’s ongoing Wine Revolution

The moon rises over the Swartland's vineyards.

When South Africa emerged from nearly half a century of apartheid in the early 1990s, its wine producers stepped up to the international plate with two strikes against them, writes Stephen Tanzer. Twenty-plus years later, they have dug themselves out of their early hole and prospered.

Does temperature really matter?

At the right temperature, all wines show off their best.

You have everything lined up.  Flowers set on the table, the guests have boozy drinks in their hands  and you are ready to move this whole party to the next level. Ladies and gentlemen, begin the wine-ing and dining!

Take your passion for wine one step further, or even further!

Go on, you know you want to do it!

Once the purview of wine professionals, restaurant staff and the geekiest of vinous geeks, in the last decade wine certifications have opened up to almost all levels of interest and knowledge, writes Joe Roberts. The big three in the U.S. are the Court of Master Sommeliers (focusing on wine knowledge and service), the Wine and Spirits Education Trust (or WSET, focused on the world of wine production and business), and the Society of Wine Educators (or SWE, concentrating on general wine knowledge and the ability to educate others in those topics). Most offer classes in major U.S. metro areas that are specifically geared to passing the certification exams.

Must-drink grapes from Greece

Grapes from Greece to enjoy ... in a bottle!

Considering the inroads Greeks have made for us moderns in architectural design, mathematics, theater and more, wine is no exception, writes Claudia Angelillo. Greece is an indisputable forbear of grape growing and winemaking. Every sip of Greek wine represents expertise and intuition spanning centuries.

Pinotage that will change your mind

Pinotage, a true blue South African, and one we all can be very proud of.

Not a fan of Pinotage? Time Atkin MW explains why you should give it another chance, and picks five wines to change your mind.

Boschendal winemaker talks bubbles!

The bubbly Lizelle Gerber and one of her bubblies!

Never one to limit winemaking to the cellar, Lizelle Gerber – winemaker at Boschendal and one of South Africa’s brightest wine stars – believes in getting her hands dirty in the vineyards so that she is able to truly appreciates the fruit of the vines. Gerber’s passion for Méthode Cap Classique (MCC) has seen her refine and evolve the estate’s bubbly into a highly sought after product.

But let her explain the intricacies of producing a bottle of MCC “magic”.

How chenin blanc charms the wine experts

Chenin blanc

If there was a boxing match of sorts for sommeliers, it wouldn’t be hard to get them to trade punches over which white grape is the most elegant, age-worthy, and terroir-expressive: riesling or chenin blanc, writes Rachel Signer.

Old Vine Chilean carignan: an emerging wine region with a lot to offer

All you need to know about carignan.

Chile’s Old Vine Carignan is coming! writes Gregory Dal Piaz. These are bush-trained, dry-farmed vines in a nation of lush vineyards. They are threads of legacy that tie the current wine industry to its roots. These vines are the same vines that subsistence farmers used for decades to make wine for local consumption, though today things have changed.

WINE OF THE MONTH: GlenWood Chardonnay Grand Duc 2013

Our Wine of the Month for February.

From chenin blanc to semillon, from merlot to shiraz, and from rosé to bubbly, they all featured in this month’s “battle of the taste buds”. Seven whites, three reds, three pinks and a bubbly: it was a good wine month!

Making sense of sparkling wines

South Africa's Cap Classiques are a match for French Champagne any day!

I was recently challenged to find a wine that would match a delicate dessert and continue to drink well into those lazy, mellow moments that follow every memorable meal, writes John Downes MW. There were several contenders, but I went for Demi-Sec Champagne. Controversial I know, but most Houses produce Demi-Sec including Moet et Chandon, Taittinger, Veuve Clicquot, Lanson and Laurent-Perrier, so it wasn’t so difficult to find.

As he popped open the Demi-Sec bubbles my host asked, “How do you tell how sweet or dry a Champagne is?” Good question! The answer is on the label. Read on to learn all the ins and outs of French letters and numbers so you’ll be in the know in time for your next big celebration!

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