Landskroon Paul de Villiers Reserve 2017, with a different kind of match, Christine Capendale’s Best Chicken Nachos…

Landskroon Paul de Villiers Reserve 2017

The De Villiers Family, who arrived in South Africa from La Rochelle in France in 1689 as French Huguenots, have owned and managed their Landskroon Wine Estate for 5 generations. Situated on the south west facing slopes of the iconic Paarl Mountain, thus named as the large granite rocks shine like pearls after rain. The view looks south to Table Mountain on the horizon and west to the Simonsberg. In all the time, the Cellarmaster has been named Paul. The current Paul is the holder of the Diners Club Wine Maker of the Year for his Port Style wines. The Landskroon Paul de Villiers Reserve 2017 pays homage to the Pauls.

Cabernet Sauvignon grapes in the hand of the harvester

The blend, classic Bordeaux in style, is 52% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Cabernet Franc and 18% Merlot. The grapes, once hand harvested, were brought to the cellar where they were separately vinified for later blending. Fermentation took place in open top fermenters with regular punch downs for maximum extraction of colour and flavour and soft tannins. Once fermented and pressed, the three varieties are matured in French oak barrels, some new, some second fill for 18 months. The wines are then blended and prepared for bottling.

Paul & Nelie de Villiers

From a Bordeaux shaped bottle, closed with natural cork. The label is a classical and elegant black. In the glass, the wine is a deep opaque bloodplum at the heart which pales out to ruby at the edges. The aromas and flavours are what one expects from a fine wine like this. Dark berry fruits, blackberries, roadside brambles, Crème de Cassis, an undertow of fynbos herbaceousness and well applied oak with its concomitant spice and vanilla. A sublime glass. The wine also has all the components to allow it to age gracefully for a couple of years of cool cellaring.

The Landskroon Paul de Villiers Reserve 2017 is a food wine without any doubt. Do chill it for about 30 minutes before serving, it will reward you well. Meat obviously comes to mind, as do some of the full flavoured vegetarian dishes like Melanzane Parmiggiana. However, while it is the perfect wine for the Sunday Lunch Roast, it does as well as a week night supper wine. And I am going to recommend Christine Capendale’s Chicken Nachos – yes chicken. A really full flavoured dish which comes up trumps to match this wine.

Christine Capendale with her recently released book, Meals

Christine Capendale’s Best Chicken Nachos

These nachos are delicious and super quick and easy to prepare. It is also quite a healthy meal which the whole family will enjoy – it’s like eating out at half of the price!

Serves 4

You’ll need
30 ml oil
500 g chicken breast fillets, cut into strips
1 onion, sliced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
150 g cherry tomatoes, halved
80 g sun-dried tomato, drained and chopped
250 g tinned corn kernels, drained (or you can use fresh cooked corn cut off the cob)
200 ml mild tomato salsa OR Peppadew salsa (you can buy this or make your own)
350 g plain nachos
250ml grated Cheddar cheese (or use half Cheddar and half mozzarella)
2 avocados, peeled and sliced
15 ml lime juice
salt and freshly ground black pepper
120 ml sour cream
60 ml thinly sliced jalapeño chilis (optional)

What you’ll do
Preheat the oven to 180 °C.
Heat the oil in a frying pan on medium heat and cook the chicken strips until done and golden brown. Season with salt and pepper and remove from the pan.
Add the onion and the garlic to the same pan and cook until soft and starting to caramelise. Season with salt and pepper and remove from the heat.
Add the chicken to the onion mixture along with the cherry tomatoes, sun-dried tomatoes and corn.
Divide the nachos between four ovenproof serving bowls (or one large dish) and spoon the chicken mixture over the nachos.
Spoon over the salsa.
Top with the grated cheese.
Bake in the oven until the cheese is melted and golden brown (about 12 minutes).
Season the avocados with salt and pepper and drizzle over the lime juice.
Serve the nachos immediately with the soured cream, avocado and the jalapeño chilis on the side or piled on top.

I like to add some fresh coriander to this dish just before serving – but if you don’t like coriander – you can leave it out!

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