Advent Calendar #8 2018…

A Portuguese Christmas Card for Advent Calendar #8

A lovely Sparkler and a bright Rosé make up the two wines for Advent Calendar #8.

Ridgeback Mischief Sparkling Wine 2018

The Ridgeback Mischief Sparkling Wine 2018 is made up of Sauvignon Blanc 96% and Viognier 4%. The oak fermented and matured Viognier anchors the flighty Sauvignon with a touch of gravitas.

Planted in east-west direction rows in deep Oakleaf soils with irrigation facilities for use only when required. Minimal sun exposure to the bunches means that the delicate tropical fruit aromas and flavours in the Sauvignon Blanc are safe-guarded.  The grapes for the Ridgeback Mischief Sparkling Wine 2018 were hand harvested by night and then destalked and pressed under oxygen free conditions. The Sauvignon Blanc was fermented in stainless steel tanks, while the Viognier juice was taken to barrel where natural fermentation took place and was then aided by a yeast culture. Two months on the lees built major mid-palate flavours and mouthfeel. Blending took place, the wine was carbonated and bottled.

The minor grape in the blend, Viognier

Pour
The Ridgeback Mischief Sparkling Wine 2018 is bottled in a Champagne shaped bottle, with an exposed, natural cork under the wire muzzle. Cute little neck label and the main label showing the Rhodesian Ridgeback carrying his master’s slippers. Brilliant aromas of tropical fruits, green guava, desiccated pineapple, white flowers and sweet tropical lime and orange. These are repeated on the palate which is full and generous with small smooth round river stones [come on, we all sucked them as children!] in the long and gently waning aftertastes.

Alida Ryder’s Cauliflower Korma Curry

Pair
Don’t keep this only for a celebration. It is perfect as a mid-morning refresher or at sundown. With food it enchants with its bubbly lift. Alida Ryder’s Cauliflower Korma Curry provides a full flavoured partner for the Ridgeback Mischief Sparkling Wine 2018.

Read more about Ridgeback Wines – CLICK HEREYonder Hill Danilo Rosè 2018, my second Advent Calendar #8 wine

Yonder Hill is in the Stellenbosch Wine Appellation at the crest of the hill as the R44 drops down into Somerset West. It has a herd of the spectacular Ankole Cattle which alone as worth a visit. Winemaker Abé Beukes has made a stunning Rosé with a blend of 73% Merlot and the balance Grenache Noir. The Merlot grapes are harvested on the estate while the Grenache Noir comes from neighbouring Vriesenhof.

Grenache Noir, ripening on the vine

The grapes for the Yonder Hill Danilo Rosé 2018 were picked early in the ideal ripeness  window with low sugar contents to retain as much of the freshness of the grapes as possible. Skin contact was allowed for less than an hour just for the skins to colour the wine the most delicate and beguiling of colours. The wine was cold fermented and bottled early to maintain the fruity flavours.

Yonder Hill DaniloYonder Hill’s Ankole Cattle

Pour
From a Burgundy shaped bottle under screw cap with a lovely label with an etching of the farm and the Helderberg. In the glass, an enchanting cherry blossom pink. The aromas are of strawberries and watermelon. The flavours echo the aromas. The style is of lighter alcohol and a zesty acidity. The wine is made for immediate drinking.

Alida Ryder’s first book

Pair
A brisk any time wine, morning noon or at sundown. Good with food, it loves seafoods, plump pink prawns, smoked trout and angelfish. It would do well with Alida Ryder’s Cauliflower Korma Curry.

Click here for Alida Ryder’s Cauliflower Korma Curry – CLICK HERE

Read more about Yonder Hill – CLICK HERE

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