5 South African Reds for Winter Foods and Moods


Leaving the house on a freezing winter’s night can be tough. A surefire way to ward off the frost is a fireplace and a generous pour of red wine paired with comfort food.

Deep, soulful flavours require specific sorts of wines. Most often they are reds, but not just any sort of red. Hearty foods demand staying power and the ability to stand up to robust flavours.

Here are 5 fine South African red wines that meet those requirements.

Nguni Malbec

Nguni Malbec nv e1502445476671 5 South African Reds for Winter Foods and Moods

Named in honour of the Nguni cattle that graze the Darling region of South Africa, this latest release Malbec from Withington can be considered quite a rarity! Malbec accounts for less than half a percent of the national vineyard. This elegant wine  is bright and well balanced, with a touch of earth and tannins. A bargain at R90 a bottle. It’s easy to enjoy right now, especially with juicy braised meats. Get it here.

Enjoy this wine with:

Lamb and Pickled Onion Pies

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Also known as mutton pies, these have a very long history. In the middle ages, they were frowned upon by the Scottish church, viewed as luxurious, decadent English-style food.

Alto Rouge 2015

Alto Rouge e1502444577166 5 South African Reds for Winter Foods and Moods

Alto Rouge is a truly beloved South African favourite and easy on the wallet too! This powerful, yet versatile red is perfect for hearty game meat dishes and pies, or a cheese board. Get a case delivered straight to your door via www.vinoteque.co.za.

Enjoy this wine with:

Cluster Series Cabernet Sauvignon 2016

Cluster Cab Sauv e1502446054835 5 South African Reds for Winter Foods and Moods

Good, moderately priced cabernet from South Africa is tough to find, because most of it comes from areas not well suited to the grape. This one from winemaker Arco Laarman (ex Glen Carlou) is direct and without the sort of artifice often found in South African cabs. The grapes for this wine were sourced from two different regions, both known for their strength in Cabernet. Stellenbosch is widely recognised as the ‘Kingdom of Cabernet’, while Paarl has a great reputation for producing excellent Cabernet with primary fruit flavours and velvety tannins. This wine is a perfect blend of these two regions. Its earthy flavours of red and black fruits and herbs pair well with pork. Get it here for R128.

Enjoy this wine with:

Succulent Mushroom Pork and Apples

porkchops 5 South African Reds for Winter Foods and Moods

Delicious and stress-free Sunday Lunches are what the slow-cooker is all about

Neethlingshof Short Story Collection The Owl Post

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The Owl Post is a single-vineyard Pinotage that forms part of a limited-edition release of 4 wines of the Neethlingshof reserve tier formerly known as Lord Neethling. Treat yourself to this rich, velvety Pinotage after tending to a slow cooked, hearty stew all afternoon. Available for R200 a bottle on www.vinoteque.co.za.

Enjoy this wine with:

Steak and Chicken Livers in Red Wine Sauce

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Some people do not like the bitter and the gamy taste of liver.

Uitkyk Carlonet

Uitkyk Carlonet NV e1502445232649 5 South African Reds for Winter Foods and Moods

The Uitkyk Carlonet is a great value for money Cabernet Sauvignon and well worth it if you’re looking to try something new this winter. What more could you ask of an easy-drinking, well-priced red wine that pairs with steak, pizza, and pasta? Not much, so order it on www.vinoteque.co.za.

Enjoy this wine with:

Melt-in-your-mouth Pizza cones

pizzacraft pizza cones 5 South African Reds for Winter Foods and Moods

You know what you need more of in your life? Pizzas that look like ice creams.