South Africa makes cracking botrytised wines but when to drink them? Sweet food with sweet wine is overwhelming all too often and I prefer the notion of pairing savoury foods with these wines, the theory being that the excellent acidities that these wines have will be tempered but not cancelled out by the saltiness of a terrine or a pâté.
Yesterday a pork terrine from Joostenberg deli with Fleur du Cap Noble Late Harvest 2012, KWV The Mentors Noble Late Harvest 2012 (both rated 5 Stars in the current edition of Platter’s) and as a ringer, a natural sweet in the form of Buitenverwachting “1769” 2007 (5 Stars in the 2010 edition of Platter’s).
The wine that worked best was the KWV (R200 per 375ml bottle). From Sauvignon Blanc, it showed pear, white peach, lime and some mushroom. It was the lightest and most focused of the wines and was a good foil for the food. Score: 92/100.
The Fleur du Cap from 97% Chenin Blanc and the rest Chardonay, Sauvignon Blanc (not yet released) was hugely intense and thick textured and would have might have fared better with a fruit-based dessert like tarte Tatin but probably best drunk on its own. Previously reviewed on this blog, it was rated 91/100 (see here).
The Buitenverwachting was a curious wine. From Muscat de Frontignan, it showed intense marmalade, fynbos, spice and even a slight terpene note. It was forceful and savoury (score: 89/100) and just about worked with the terrine but could probably have used some blue cheese.