The third Wine Circle virtual tasting took place on 19 November and was attended by 30 Paviors and their guests. As on previous occasions, wines were shipped out to participants in advance and the event was hosted over Zoom.
Participants were treated to an excellent presentation from De Wet Viljoen of Neethlingshof Estates in Stellenbosch, South Africa. The following is an extract from a conversation:
“You start with a very clear idea of what you want, but you can’t follow a recipe to get there. It’s more a case of developing an understanding of the vines – knowing them, not theoretically or generically, but tangibly. It’s a relationship you conduct on a localised scale, where you chart the soil changes within each vineyard and, through the vineyard management techniques you use, come to know what you can expect from each section of every vineyard. If you get the basics right, it’s far easier for the wine you make to express its origin and personality. The rest follows naturally.”
De Wet presented four examples of this process – Gewurztraminer 2019, Malbec 2019, Pinotage 2018 and a Maria Noble Late Harvest Riesling 2019. All agreed that it was interesting to experience a Malbec that was not from Argentina and this example showed very different characteristics – being rounder and lighter than the South American examples. The Pinotage found favour all round and the Late Harvest Riesling was one to savour with the Christmas Pudding – if we can wait that long.
A further virtual tasting is planned and details will be distributed.