If you are a lover of art and wine and you haven’t been to the new KWV tasting centre in Paarl, then you should do yourself a favour and pay the place a visit. Those familiar with the old tasting venue will agree that the new KWV Sensorium is a massive improvement, to say the least.
A recent invite from the KWV team allowed me to view the impressive art collection on display in the Sensorium and although none of the paintings will fit into my personal art collection (or budget for that matter), the wines are really something to write home about.
A bit of luck and a razor sharp palate scored me a prize on the day of my visit. Upon arrival, guests were presented with two 2012 sauvignon blancs from the KWV The Mentors range. Although made from the same grape varietal, and in the same year, the two wines were complete different. Created to pay total respect to terroir, the distinctive and unique characters of these two sauvignon blancs lay in the grapes, sourced from exceptional vineyards scattered across the Western Cape.
The task was to guess the origin of each wine. The prize – the entire collection of the new vintages from the KWV The Mentors range. Luckily for me, my palate conquered the quest and I left with the grand prize, valued at R1500!
I must admit, the prices of the wines in the KWV The Mentors collection are pretty intimidation. Most of us can’t afford to pay R180 or R250 for a bottle of wine. Too afraid to open one of these expensive and precious winnings of mine, I decide to hide the bottles away in the back of my wine collection. Until yesterday…
With the price-tag still in the back of my head, keeping in mind that I didn’t pay for any of the wines, I cracked open the 2010 The Mentors Chardonnay. Admittedly, I was skeptical. What does R180 taste like? Is it really any better than the R80 barrel fermented favourite waiting in my fridge?
The first sip was like any other. You taste it and you go: ”mmm, not quite sure what to say”. The second sip however, is the deal breaker and this is where The Mentors Chardonnay stood up to its elaborate price tag.
It’s a wine made for those who really enjoy a good chardonnay and one for those who don’t know what a good chardonnay taste like.
While drinking this finely crafted wine, I never had the urge to analyse it. I still don’t know what it smell like, nor did I question the origin of the grapes. All I know is that I really enjoyed every single sip and when I poured the last drop from the bottle (which I polished-off on my own), I felt really satisfied. A rare occurrence. It’s not often that a wine leaves me so content. Even though I did not pay for it, the wine left me with a sense of fulfillment. Enough to convince me to buy a bottle? I think so. The KWV The Mentors range might be pricey, but the satisfaction it provides is priceless!