Wine, top fare make for Zevenwacht feast

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in­ers at­tend­ing a wine pair­ing din­ner at The This­tle Restau­rant last Satur­day had the ben­e­fit of tasting notes be­ing pre­sented by Zevenwacht Wine Es­tate’s new wine­maker, Ha­gen Viljoen.

Although he has only been at Zevenwacht for a month, Viljoen has worked in the in­dus­try for 13 years, since he grad­u­ated from Stel­len­bosch Univer­sity with a de­gree in viti­cul­ture and oenol­ogy.

He also pre­vi­ously worked as as­sis­tant wine­maker at Zevenwacht in 2011 and 2012.

Zevenwacht is sit­u­ated on the Stel­len­bosch Wine Route, with panoramic views of Table Moun­tain, Table Bay and False Bay. The name Zevenwacht is de­rived from the Dutch, “Seven Ex­pec­ta­tions”. It is a mod­ern wine farm with a 300-year his­tory.

To ac­com­pany a canape con­sist­ing of a baked parma ham bas­ket with camem­bert cheese and pre­served figs, Viljoen pre­sented din­ers with the Zevenwacht 7even rose, 2017 vintage.

Viljoen said it was 100% caber­net franc, and per­fectly com­ple­mented the tasty canape.

The first course was beef carpac­cio Si­cil­iana, with rocket, ca­pers and parme­san shav­ings. It was served with one of the es­tate’s premier wines, the 360 sau­vi­gnon blanc.

“The sau­vi­gnon blanc vines are ba­si­cally the high­est part of the farm. At the top you have a 360 de­gree view of the area – so the name is for the panoramic view,” Viljoen said. “Iron­i­cally it’s also close to 360m above sea

Dwith the carpac­cio and rocket.

Next up was bour­bon sweet potato bisque with cinnamon crou­tons and crispy smoked ba­con with a hint of maple syrup. The soup had a lovely thick tex­ture, well com­ple­mented by the ba­con.

The wine that went with it was The Tin Mine, a blend of chenin blanc, chardon­nay, viog­nier and rous­sanne.

Viljoen said the chenin blanc was from one of the old­est vines on the es­tate – 1981. Although the older vines have lower yields, he said there was value in keep­ing them as they have com­plex­ity and con­cen­tra­tion in their crops, and were more in bal­ance.

The name Tin Mine is for the tin mines which op­er­ated on the slopes of the es­tate in the years lead­ing up to World War I.

Din­ers had the choice of grilled line fish or beef fil­let for the mains. pre­fer – the Zevenwacht caber­net sau­vi­gnon.

As Viljoen said, there was a bram­ble berry taste with lots of fruit. It went per­fectly with the fil­let, which was moist and ten­der and served with roast gar­lic mashed potato, grilled cau­li­flower and mush­room ragu.

Orig­i­nally paired with the fil­let, ev­ery­one got a taste of what was the best wine of the evening – the Z Re­serve. Like Je­sus’ mir­a­cle at Cana, the best was saved for last. A blend of 70% caber­net sau­vi­gnon, 12% caber­net franc, 10% mer­lot, 4% mal­bec, 4% petit ver­dot, it was a beau­ti­fully smooth wine with a full, rich flavour.

Dessert was still to come, but the Z lin­gered on the palate. Dessert was wickedly de­li­cious deep fried ice cream in a hon­ey­comb pas­try shell with choco­late fudge, meringues and fresh ber­ries.

Rather than a wine, it was

DE­LEC­TA­BLE START: A canape con­sist­ing of a baked parma ham bas­ket with camem­bert cheese and pre­served figs, was served with the Zevenwacht 7even rose

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