Pairing to Perfection in the Winelands
8 pairing experiences that offer a tantalising twist on traditional pairings
It’s no secret that the food and wine in South Africa is some of the best in the world, whether you’re enjoying a farm-to-table brunch at a countryside cafe, or a seven-course taster menu at a fine-dining establishment. Luxury cuisine travel is always better with two - we know you’ll love these pairs! Not only is the food something to write home about, but the wines are similarly spectacular — so what better way to enjoy them both than by pairing them together?
Don’t be fooled into thinking that a pairing in South Africa is all just cheese and biscuits. These days, a glass of wine or a Méthode Cap Classique (MCC) varietal can go hand-in-hand with gastronomic fare ranging from nougat to biltong.
Life is replete with famous partnerships — from peanut butter and jam, to Dolce and Gabbana. Romeo would be nothing without Juliet, just like a camembert brings out the best in a Pinotage.
Find your perfect food and wine combination by exploring what’s on offer at the wine farms in the Western Cape province. Whether you wish to finely balance flavours or unleash the contrast in complex components, try out these 8 pairing experiences that offer a tantalising twist on traditional pairings.
1. Nougat and MCC, Villiera
Villiera is a family-owned winery that specialises in the art of making Méthode Cap Classique, and what better way to enjoy these blissful bubbles than by pairing them with a variety of chewy nougat.
Balance the tangy touches of a Grier Brut with honey, almond and cranberry nougat; or match the fruity Villiera Tradition Brut with the creamy crunch of macadamia nougat. And there’s arguably no better companion for the Tradition Brut Rosé than the goji berry, almond and rooibos tea nougat!
2. Biltong and wine, Die Keldery
The pairing journey at Die Keldery takes a traditionally South African turn by offering you the chance to try a savoury pairing of five different types of biltong with Namaqua and Spencer Bay wines. Chilli bites, droëwors and cabanossi are also up for grabs and go down well with other wines on offer.
3. Macaroon and MCC, Canto
The South African version of champagne is called Méthode Cap Classique, and what better way to savour a glass of Canto’s fizz than with a delicate macaroon?
Macaroons and champagne are a match made in heaven, and you get the chance to match their four delicious varieties with different flavours of these sugary biscuits.
The Shiraz Rosé MCC is joined in holy matrimony with a red velvet macaroon, and it’s hard not to fall in love with the combination of Pinot Noir MCC and Turkish Delight macaroon.
4. Biscotti and wine, De Krans
This famous Italian biscuit doesn’t just go down well with an espresso, but makes a delightful accompaniment to a glass of wine. So much so that the powers-that-be at De Krans have created a selection of biscotti that enhances the taste of their wines.
The traditionally hard, almond biscuit goes hand-in-hand with their Moscato, whilst a mixed herb biscotti brings out the notes of the Pinotage Rosé. Meanwhile, the biltong biscotti is an interesting match for the Touriga Nacional, and an allspice choc-chip biscotti is a fitting finalé for the rich Cape Vintage.
5. Cheesecake and MCC, Laborie
Cheesecake and champagne — what more could you want in life?
Laborie’s new pairing is enjoyed in three phases to complement each variety of their popular MCC. The first round is a citrusy taste sensation, with the lemony-lime of the Brut enhanced by orange-blossom cheesecakey goodness. The second round is all about the berries and sees a strawberry number accentuating a Rosé, before the rich Chardonnay Blanc de Blanc is paired with a hazelnut version of this delicious dessert.
6. Chocolate and wine, Waterford
Waterford has earned itself quite the reputation thanks to its flawless commitment to combining two of the best things on the planet — wine and chocolate. Their renowned winemaker worked closely with a Belgian chocolatier to create chocolates that would perfectly suit their wines, so thanks to them you can sample delights, such as a spicy Shiraz with masala chai dark chocolate.
7. Ice-cream with wine and MCC, Clos Malverne
This estate’s signature tasting experience is rather unique — four heavenly scoops of gourmet ice cream are betrothed to their partners in wine, and flavour combinations change with the season. However, generally speaking, fresh, fruity flavours tend to pair with the Sauvignon Blanc Brut, while creamy buttery ones go down particularly well with their red varieties. And Heston Blumenthal can eat his heart out, as here you can even expect inventive delights, such as parsnip, saffron, salted caramel and pumpkin seed ice cream.
8. Cupcakes and wine, Delheim
Over four decades ago, Delheim was the very first winery in the country to produce a Pinotage Rosé, and it’s been a hit ever since — especially now that it’s served with a pomegranate cupcake. Other stars in the line-up are a pumpkin and vanilla cupcake infused with star anise and cinnamon, which goes down a treat with a Pinotage; and an aromatic Gewürztraminer, which is paired with a Makataan wild melon cupcake.
If you would like to savour the flavours of your MCC, contact Elite Travel Concept to organise a unique pairing at a wine farm on your next luxury vacation.
(Information for this article was gathered from visitwinelands.co.za)