Two Days of Mountains


Mount Vernon yesterday (below) and a stunning vertical tasting of Cabernets, Malbecs and Chardonnays. Winemaker Debbie Hooper (at the bottom of this post) complained that being part of Paarl really didn’t work for Mt. Vernon as her Klapmuts terroir gets lost. Far better to have a Wine of Origin Klapmuts, a certification awarded after a blind tasting by other producers in the region. A system that is applied with great effect on wine quality in Portugal. Totally voluntary and locally managed. Perhaps a project for VinPro instead of playing expensive political games?

photo 59 300x225 Two Days of Mountains

Debbie’s drops would have no problem at all getting certified with her 2008 Cabernet easily mistaken for Margaux. Likewise the 2008 Malbec is all perfumed violets while the 2010 Chardonnay is a citric Chablis. Fabulous wines well worth searching out.

Debbie’s certification proposal would certainly be supported by Danie de Wet, chairman of this morning’s Checkers Battle of die Berge blind tasting of 70 wines from the Helderberg and Simonsberg. “Look for the golden thread of typicity” instructed Danie and the thread was quicky found. A flinty minerality in the Helderberg and a tannin-driven texture in the case of the Simonsberg.

photo 60 300x225 Two Days of Mountains

The best white, red and wallet-friendly wines from the Simonsberg and Helderberg will be announced at a wine fair on Muratie tomorrow and there will be no surprises. Which confirms that blind tastings work. A message for the sighted tasting Platter wine guide now owned by Diners Club. The traditional 20 point scale was extended to 25 with 5 points awarded for typicity determined by the profiles of the other wines in the flight. Danie said all tastings should be done this way.

The competition is sponsored by Checkers supermarket and one wag recommended that they hire Gordon Ramsay to be the face of the Simonsberg and Nataniël the face of the Helderberg. “Ramsay suits the Simonsberg on account of his language” remarked Muratie owner Rijk Melck.