Durbanville shines in two wines from Groot Phesantekraal…

Groot Phesantekraal in the Durbanville Wine Appellation

Having grown up in Durbanville, Fisantekraal was a place where there was a small airport and used by gliders in the main. They often flew the thermals above my parent’s farm. The farm which is now known as Groot Phesantekraal was granted in 1698 by Governor Simon van der Stel when the land was given to its first owner, Olof Bergh, by. In 1759 the property was sold to the Louw family and later purchased by Arend Brink in 1897. Well known as a general farming property, 840 hectares in size until fourth generation owners, Andre and Ronelle Brink planted 50 hectares of vineyard. Now a firm fixture in the Durbanville Wine Appellation, these wines were the first I had tasted from Groot Phesantekraal.

Groot Phesantekraal owners, Andre & Ronelle Brink – photo John Ford

There are reasons other than wine that add interest to a visit.  The central feature of the tasting room is a wall of shelves lined with classic glass bottles containing a vast selection of ‘aromas’.  The elegant rustic restaurant is in the restored stable which was built in 1767. An opportunity to obtain a bottle of Groot Phesantekraal Extra Virgin Olive Oil. Here you will be able also to taste all the Groot Phesantekraal wines in their brand new livery.

Groot Phesantekraal Sauvignon Blanc 2017

I was blown away by this wine – a stonker. Proud too that it is a Durbanville Wine. The wine has a Double Gold Award from Veritas and was chosen as one of the wines in the 2017 FNB Top 10 Sauvignon Blanc Awards. Appropriate that I should be writing about this wine on Friday 4th May which is International Sauvignon Blanc Day.

Perfect bunches of Sauvignon Blanc in the harvester’s hand

Pour
From a Burgundy shaped bottle closed under screw cap. In the glass a gem bright pale golden straw. Once you turn the top off, the aromas will fill a room. The whiffs are of pink grapefruit skin oil, fresh sliced green bell peppers and kiwis.  The mouth feel is as big as its aromas, pleasant line of fruit supporting acidity from entry to one of the longest tropical fruited tail ends I have tasted. Lots of tropical fruit there. Stunner of a wine.

Pair
While this is a refreshing glass mid-morning, it works so well with food. But the food must have sufficient oomph to meet the wine. Smoked Angelfish Paté, a cream of mussel soup – there is an excellent one called Billy Bye, and it would be a treat with a Weber Roasted Belly of Pork with lots of crackling and baked Granny Smith Apples.

Groot Phesantekraal Cabernet Sauvignon 2015

I also really liked this wine. French oak matured with the dustiness which is so appealing in Durbanville Wines. The wine is very accessible now, but if well cellared will last certainly up to five years. Rich and complex wine awarded a 2017 Michelangelo Gold Medal.

Cabernet Sauvignon in the harvesters hands

Pour
From a  Bordeaux shaped bottle and closed with natural cork. The label is elegant and in black, In the glass, the wine is a rich bloodplum at the core which pales out to garnet at the edges. The smells are classical Durbanville Cabernet, a dusty fynbos herbaceousness, roadside brambles and I found an undertow of crushed fresh green peppercorns. Medium of palate with red and black berry and cherry fruits, and ripe plums. Oak and its concomitant spices and crushed Melissa also in the background.

Pair
Chill the wine for 30 minutes before serving and glug it into a decanter to aerate it. Good with red meats off the braai, the grill, a pan and the oven.  It would work well with cold roasted fillet of beef with rocket and shards of parmesan and a number of lusty vegetarian main courses.

Read more about Groot Phesantekraal – CLICK HERE

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