Drinking and driving


As promised, some more GVG images from the inspired pen of Piet Grobler. Synchronicity strikes again as the winemaker from Rickety Bridge who took us out for an excellent dinner of calves’ kidneys at Monneau in Franschhoekfranschhoekcellarwines Drinking and driving
by franschhoekwines
on Friday was Wynand Grobler. Any relation?

gvg32 Drinking and driving

On the road is the place to taste wine; the Winelands are the new Mauritius. The road has history: Jack Kerouac and Neal Cassady writing Bo-Ho road novels on a single roll of teletype paper 40m long, Che Guevara and Alberto Granado on their bikes, diaries in rucksacks and Hunter S. Thompson inventing a whole new genre of Gonzo journalism from a red convertible.

Pocket-sized pundit Oz Clarke and hirsute James May from Top Gear have taken the next logical step: drinking and driving. Their travels round the vineyards of France in Big Wine Adventure are one of the best things on BBC Food.

gvg21 Drinking and driving

Motormouths and wine have form: remember Jeremy Clarkson, the most famous petrolhead of them all, in Stellenbosch for the launch of the Jaguar XK convertible? “You certainly don’t go to SA for the viniculture … despite the hilarious attempts to make wine, [SA] is one of the world’s great countries … but the wine’s rubbish.”

That said, wine tasting remains a popular participatory holiday and in these straightened economic times, an affordable one. Terroir supplies a philosophical justification for tasting wines in-situ. That almost mythical concept of fermented grape juice reflecting the sunny Slanghoek slopes, the cloud dappled Darling dongas or the wind-blasted Agulhas acres, supplies a convenient raison d’être for taking your buds (both lingual and social) on a tour of the vineyards.

gvg4 Drinking and driving

So powered by BP petrol and fatty Springbok droë wors from Kambro farm stall outside Britstown, we followed a hunch that that in some dark cobwebby corner of some remote cellar, palettes of good value wine would be lurking, biding their time. And we found plenty: a whole pocket full of anonymous frogs that after mouth-to-mouth resuscitation, turned out to be white and red-blooded royalty.