Yesterday an information session with Charles Back of Fairview, Goats do Roam, La Capra and Spice Route. “Wine on its own is not a strong enough draw card to appeal to the average tourist,” he says and so Fairview’s The Goatshed restaurant, cheeses, breads and olive oils.
Back has now acquired another Paarl property in addition to Fairview in the shape of Seidelberg which will be become the point of public interface for Spice Route wines (which originate from the Swartland) while there will also be a restaurant, a “from-bean-to-bar” chocolate factory and distillery. “The success of markets at the Old Biscuit Mill and in Hout Bay point to a consumer hankering to connect with product. We’re taking it one step further”.
Afterwards, the chance to taste some work-in-progress wines as well as some older vintages. The revered Shiraz 1974, the first year wine appeared under a Fairview label, looked rustic and a bit tired but a Pinotage 1979, the first wine made by Charles Back himself, was splendid – sweet red fruit, bright acidity and still remarkably firm tannins. Some of head cheesemaker Louis Lourens’ French-style Brie on a hunk of baguette and a glass of this and I was a happy man.