My Penchant For Wine…Where Has It Gone??

I’ve just returned back to Cape Town after spending some time at my parents’ farm in the Eastern Cape. It was a lovely 2.5 weeks of total relaxation, and the fact that it was sooooo cold (winter there has a completely different definition!), meant that each night would be spent huddled in front of a crackling wood fire with a glass of rich red wine in hand.

Sound good, doesn’t it? It was! but it seems that I go through stages with wine- one moment I’m all for it, the next I can hardly look at white- only sticking to red, or even worse- just not having a palate for it altogether (Is that sad?). Perhaps my time at The Institute of Culinary Arts has something to do with this. I can remember taking every chance I got to go wine tasting at some of the most beautiful wine farms in and around Stellenbosch. Our wine lecturer constantly encouraged it. And tell me, when was the last time you heard of a student who wasn’t up for a long day of  wine tasting??!

And then of course, there were the lectures- ‘Burgundy’, ‘Bordeaux’, ‘Acid’, ‘Oak’, ‘Dr. Perold’, ‘Dr. Sscchhmerold’… to be honest, I doubt anybody ever used the hundred and ten million spatoons that were provided for spitting- I mean, what student do you know spits at a wine tasting?? I can still remember how people would drive home drunk in rather high spirits after these lectures.

Oh and then there were those five months that I worked at a boutique wine shop in Constantia. Now THAT was fun!! I was the little sales girl who sold R600 bottles of wine to the Bentley owners and their botoxed, leopard-skin-wearing wives. Wine reps would flit in throughout the day leaving bottles and bottles of samples. Oh the samples!

I would also make canape’s for the public wine tasting each Friday evening. It always ended up being such a hoot! My boss and all her wine-drinking friends would come over and often we would sabrage bottles of MCC and champagne with an antique sabre…just for the sake of it. The mood would be so happy and everyone always had that naughty weekend ‘glint’ in their eyes. Of course we never had just one wine at the tasting. Oh no, there would be at least 3 to 5 on offer. So, it was no wonder that when Saturday morning eventually rolled around, my head would feel like it was wedged under the wheel of a ten ton truck.

I now work at a wine farm (just up the road from where the shop used to be, funnily enough!) and my wine consumption has (thankfully) diminished to a more ‘balanced’ level. I still enjoy little wine tasting  jaunts from time to time. In fact I went to the Old Mutual Trophy wine show tasting just last month. It was fun, but I discovered that right now Sauvignon Blanc is a ‘no’ for me.

Oh dear. We can never have it all, can we!



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