The first tasting line-up of 2020 includes thrilling new imports from Piedmont and Loire, hedonistic French icons, natural wines and much-loved industry personalities including, Chris Mullineux, David Clarke and an ex-Young Gun who’s taking over Rioja!
Unless otherwise indicated, we taste between 10 and 15 wines in our informal, yet informative tastings. Tastings run from 18h30 – 20h00 and will be hosted at Wine Cellar Observatory, Cape Town or in Dunkeld, Johannesburg.
Natural wines with David Clarke – R 200
Cape Town: Wednesday, 12 February at 18h30, Wine Cellar Observatory
What does ‘natural’ wine mean? What should you expect from natural wines? Experienced sommelier, wine distributor and industry commentator David Clarke will lead the discussion on natural wines – a relatively new category in the SA market. Showcasing an impressive set of local natural wines, we will taste through delicious new releases from Intellego, JH Meyer, Mother Rock, Rossouw, Gouws & Clarke, Scions of Sinai and Testalonga.
Benchmark Loire – R 850
Cape Town: Wednesday, 26 February at 18h30, Wine Cellar Observatory
Johannesburg: Thursday, 27 February at 18h30, Suite 1108, Dunkeld West Shopping Centre
This famous north-western region of France produces an exciting, nuanced array of whites and reds that are often difficult to come by. We will taste through a top selection of wines from the Loire’s most famous producers and benchmarks from each appellation, including Vouvray, Sancerre, Saumur-Champigny and Saint-Nicolas-de-Bourgueil. Expect Domaine Huet, Thierry Germain, Domaine Vacheron, Frédéric Mabileau, the new star Thibault Denizot and more.
An introduction to Piedmont – R 400
Cape Town: Wednesday, 11 March at 18h30, Wine Cellar Observatory
Johannesburg: Thursday, 12 March at 18h30, Suite 1108, Dunkeld West Shopping Centre
This is an introductory, educational and fun tasting where you will learn more about Italy’s Piedmont region. We will taste through all the region’s major wines, both white and red, to understand why Piedmont is the new darling of fine wine lovers around the world. From the interesting whites of Gavi and local reds like Freisa, we will be tasting everything from the benchmark Barolos and Barbarescos through to new-wave Chardonnays and honest Dolcettos.
Barolo 2015s – R 700
Cape Town: Wednesday, 25 March at 18h30, Wine Cellar Observatory
Johannesburg: Thursday, 26 March at 18h30, Suite 1108, Dunkeld West Shopping Centre
Is Piedmont the new Burgundy? We aim to find out by tasting FOURTEEN Barolo 2015s. ‘Quite simply, Barolo, and Piedmont more broadly, is going through a remarkable boom,’ writes Antonio Galloni of Vinous.com regarding the young growers and re-born older estates that are now producing a new level of quality. He goes on to say that Barolo produced ‘a number of dazzling 2015s, even if quality is uneven across the board’. We are proud to import an amazing selection from GD Vajra, Pio Cesare, Giulia Negri, Marco Marengo and Luigi Baudana – come and taste them.
Chris Mullineux: New Leeu Passant and the 80s – R 450
Cape Town: Wednesday, 8 April at 18h30, Wine Cellar Observatory
Can the Mullineux family do no wrong? We’re hosting arguably SA’s most successful producer over the last decade to showcase their prestigious Leeu Passant Dry Red and Chardonnay. Join Chris Mullineux as he presents the latest vintages, including 3 exciting new wines (you will find out soon!). He will be taking us on a journey back to the 90s, 80s and 70s and tasting the SA icons that influenced this amazing project.
Laventura: Young Gun MacRobert in Rioja – R 350
Cape Town: Thursday, 16 April at 18h30, Wine Cellar Observatory
Johannesburg: Friday, 17 April at 18h30, Suite 1108, Dunkeld West Shopping Centre
‘It’s time to take Rioja far more seriously,’ writes Tim Atkin MW as the Rioja landscape changes dramatically. Thanks to, most notably, our ex-Young Gun Bryan MacRobert who moved to Rioja 7 years ago to start Laventura. Today, his new terroir-driven wines are causing a fuss! ‘I want to make Rioja as it once was. I’m trying to make honest wines,’ says Bryan who will be presenting his refreshing, innovative and true-to-terroir style of Rioja. Not to be missed!
French icons – R 2,500
Cape Town: Wednesday, 22 April at 18h30, Wine Cellar Observatory
Johannesburg: Thursday, 23 April at 18h30, Suite 1108, Dunkeld West Shopping Centre
This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to taste some of the most-revered French wines in one sitting. This hedonistic affair will showcase iconic wines from the top regions, including Chapoutier Ermitage Le Pavillon, Château Rayas Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Clos Rougeard Saumur-Champigny Le Bourg, Trimbach Clos Ste Hune, Krug Grande Cuvée, Vieux Château Certan, Hudelot-Noëllat Romanée-Saint-Vivant and Henri Boillot Batard-Montrachet!