I had the most amazing food experience at The Bombay Brasserie at the newly opened Taj Hotel at the top of Cape Town opposite the daoor to St George’s Cathedral.
I lunched with a trio of winemakers from the famed Nederburg Winery, Razvan Macici Cellar Master, Tariro Masayiti White Wine Maker and Wilhelm Pienaar Red Wine Maker, who has recently returned from Montpellier University in France where he completed his Master’s degree in winemaking.
They had teamed up with Executive Chef Shyam Sunder Longani and his wife Sous Chef Harpreet Kaur and created some idyllic matches of contemporary Indian foods and a clutch of Nederburg Wines.
And if you think that Indian food is so hot it clears the sinuses, think again. This was sensual stuff, delicate flavours, some a tad warming but certainly those at my table agreed that full-bodied whites, and even those with a touch of residual sugar worked brilliantly with the dishes. Reds work well if the tannins are soft and the acidity friendly the Nederburg Manor House Shiraz 2007 was a perfect match with Chicken tikka served with vinegared shallots, pretty pink things.
Here are some of the matches for you:
Soft lentil dumplings in yoghurt served with a sweet mango relish was a heavenly soft smooth dumpling in sweet yoghurt sauce. The Nederburg Winemaster¹s reserve Chenin Blanc with its touch of oak ageing and botrytis was just the juice.
There was a quite hot yummy Roasted Yellow Corn Soup, smooth and warming with turmeric popcorn a light hearted and amusing little cup which had been matched just this side of heaven by the Nederburg Winemaster’s reserve Rhine Riesling. Good news is we are allowed to call it just Riesling from the 2010 vintage.
There was an utterly delicious Tender Lamb Kebab created for the Nawhab of Lucknow for the nobles who preferred not to chew which they daringly and successfully served with the Nederburg Wine Master’s Reserve Special Late Harvest.
The crepes and carrot rolls dessert was perfect with the Nederburg Winemaster’s Reserve Noble Late Harvest 2009.
Out of interest, Nederburg have produced a range of wines for the FIFA 2010 World Cup; do look out for the specially labelled crisp fresh Sauvignon Blanc, a dry and so de rigueur Rosé and a juicy chunky Cabernet Sauvignon that will not mess up the flavour of any hamburger you might choose to eat with it.
There has been a huge wave of change since Razvan took charge of the Nederburg Cellar no longer ordinary big winery wines but special, crafted serious stuff and the pricing is great too.