McCauley’s Merlot


Perhaps the most surprising thing about the shock!, horror!, Prada lifestyle revelations of Rhema pastor Ray McCauley is his modest taste in wine. Yesterday’s Sunday Times announced “the devil has been let loose at Rhema” with diabolic evidence presented of the pastor chomping “600g T-bone steaks, washed down with R365 bottles of Meerlust merlot.” Compare and contrast to Sodom & Gauteng (then economic [sic] MEC, now premier) Paul Mashatile whose Auberge Michel restaurant post-budget speech dinner famously cost taxpayers R96 000 two years ago.

meerlust merlot McCauley’s Merlot

Two restaurants are mentioned in Revelations: Alan Pick’s Lekgotla and Butcher Boys in Umhlanga. If the former, the Meerlust merlot was probably one of the cheapest bottles on the menu. A canny choice too, as insiders have long known that merlot is Meerlust’s strong suit even though it’s the Rubicon that makes the running among label drinkers while sighted wine guide gurus fancy Meerlust pinot noir 2004 this season.

Pastor Ray and other Good Value Guru aficionados might want to give the Herold 2007 pinot a whirl, while bottles of Black Sheep (ironically appropriate name for bible bashers) 2006, a pinot from the same producer Vivien Harpur, should be snapped up on sight. At R40 a bottle, not a devilishly difficult thing to do.

Meanwhile church elders are singing from the same hymn sheet, with spokesman Vusi Mona saying “a bottle of wine that cost R365 is not going to save anybody’s job.” Whatever that means, as Tony Blair famously remarked.