Pinot Noir and Chardonnay are the two classical noble grapes of Burgundy and Champagne. Pinot Noir, is amusingly referred to as a red wine wanting to be a white wine and Chardonnay, a red wanting to be a white.
Each bringing its own wonderful characteristics to Champagne and indeed to our very own Cap Classique, made in the same way as Champagne with a second fermentation in the bottle. They work beautifully in concert with each other as in the Haute Cabrière Chardonnay Pinot Noir, a white wine of great character.
On their own, they reach majesty.
And then Takuan von Arnim the family Cellarmaster adds a twist. He produces Haute Cabrière Unwooded Pinot Noir 2016. This is a true expression of the grape, allowing its magical fruit to shine, unencumbered by oak. A commitment to the grape, their favourite red variety, is able to stand on its own and will entice the non-red wine drinker to start the journey to red wine.
Thin skinned, and perhaps taking more from its surroundings and soils, the wine is delicate and has the softest of tannins.
It looks like
Packaged in a Burgundy shaped bottle under screw cap. In the glass, it is the most enchanting gem bright cherry red.
It smells like
A generosity of red fruit, redcurrants, raspberries and strawberries. And lovely bright fruited cherries. As I said, the tannins are soft and the fruit shines.
It tastes like
Like those little hard French candies my grandmother kept in the cubby hole of her car. Just sensuous red berries and cherries. Beautiful acidity from entry right through the satisfying tail.
It’s good with
This is a perfect food wine, be sure to chill it for about 30 minutes before serving. Cold smoked duck, seared tuna, the Italian salad of thinly sliced rare roast beef with shards of parmesan and rocket, dressed with a luscious local olive oil, all are great partners.
One of the dishes that is brilliant with this wine is Jacquie Rey’s Lamb Knuckle Curry which appears in Erica Platter and Clinton Friedman’s roaring success of a cookbook, Durban Curry – so much of flavour. Erica will tell you that Cape Classique is a good partner to curry. Click here to buy the book online.
Jacqui’s Lamb Knuckle Curry
This recipe is from star chef Jacqui Rey, power behind catering company Food Matters, consistently rated the best in KZN, first choice of big business, of the polo set, of glam party throwers, of brides and grooms. She fed the guests at Springbok and Sharks rugby star Pat Lambie’s wedding. And because she’s based on the coast north of Durban but caters for the tastes of the entire province, the one dish she absolutely has to offer every client is a tip-top curry.
“I do all sorts. Prawn. Surf and turf – that’s chicken and prawn. Lamb. At the end of a wedding, or a cocktail party, I often do baby bunny chows in mini-rolls, or curry in tiny rotis, or little bowls.” Curiously, when the IPL, Indian Professional Cricket League, came to Durban a few seasons ago, and Jacqui won the contract to organise all the VIP catering, the one dish that wasn’t offered was Durban curry!
“I pointed this out, kept saying how good it would be to showcase our local dishes, but I was told that only Indian curries, made by chefs from India, would do!” Everything Jacqui makes is delicious. Her cakes, wedding or not, are legendary; she was judged one of the World’s Top 100 Bakers in 2013. This subtle curry is another triumph, and husband Jif’s favourite. You’ll have some fun googling the KZN names for the spices.
What you’ll need
125ml sunflower oil
4 onions, finely diced
6 cloves garlic, crushed
1 thumb ginger, grated
82ml medium masala
5ml turmeric powder
5ml ground jeera
5ml ground coriander
2 tins chopped tomatoes
4 sprigs fresh thyme
4 sprigs curry leaves
2 kg lamb knuckle
15ml coarse salt
Extra dhania, curry leaves to garnish
What you’ll do
Heat the oil in a heavy pot. Add onions, cook until translucent. Add garlic and ginger, cook a few mins. Add curry powder and ground spices. Stir continuously until mixture is well done. Add lamb knuckles, turning to coat with spice mixture. Keep cooking about 20 mins, taking care not to burn. Add 1 tin tomatoes, thyme and curry leaves. Put lid on, cook on a very low heat until lamb is tender (about 2 ½ – 3hrs). Add second tin tomatoes just before lamb has finished cooking. Check seasoning, add salt if necessary. Garnish with fresh dhania and curry leaves.
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