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MICHAEL GREEN’S WINE NOTES (article first published : 2004-01-29)

The Nederburg pre-auction wine tastings have become an annual highlight for wine enthusiasts, who have the opportunity of sampling an ample array of the Cape’s finest wines.

The tastings are held at various venues across the country, and two of them will be in Durban, both of them at the Holiday Inn Elangeni. On Monday February 16 there will be a tasting for the liquor trade which is by invitation only, and the following evening, Tuesday February 17, a t 18h30 for 19h00 there will be a public tasting. The charge for the latter is R65 per person, which includes sparkling wine on arrival, the tasting of eleven wines covering a wide spectrum of styles, and light snacks afterwards.

Both tastings will be conducted by Dave Hughes, one of the most entertaining and engaging of wine speakers. Bookings can be made through Computicket.

The wines to be tasted are: Nederburg malbec, the first example of this red wine to be placed on the auction; Nederburg 2002 reserve sauvignon blanc/semillon blend; a private bin chardonnay and a private bin pinotage; and two of Nederburg’s famous noble late harvest dessert wines, Edelkeur and Eminence.

Darling Cellars in the Swartland wine region north of Cape Town will be represented by their Onyx shiraz 1999, winner of a gold medal at the 2001 Veritas wine awards.

Other wines on the tasting list are: Hartenberg estate merlot 1997; Spier’s private collection chenin blanc 2001; Plaisir de Merle shiraz 1988, from Franschhoek; and Le Riche cabernet sauvignon reserve 1999, from a Stellenbosch cellar which has over the past six years built up a big reputation for quality reds.

These tastings have in the past proved to be exceptionally informative and convivial occasions, and no doubt that pattern will be repeated in February. They give wine lovers the chance to select their favourites and ask their local liquor dealers or wine shops to bid on their behalf at the auction.

The Nederburg auction will be held at Paarl on April 2 and 3. – Michael Green




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