It began with a conversation between my magazine editor and I. I have yet to acquire a taste for wine, but her niggling me, and my lack of anything at all to do that night led to us hightailing it to an event known as ‘Tuning the Vine‘. Okay, so basically what happens is this guy created a wine event in a city where wine is loved. It’s a four-year old situation where the City of Cape Town is rocked with wine.
I began the #InnerCityWineRoute adventure – mapped out on the hippest streets in the CBD – on Wednesday night at 05:30pm, with 4 000 other on-foot wine travelers at 91 Loop Street.
I got to discover yet another hipster clean backpacker joint while sampling Sutherland’s Grenache Rose from Thelema Wines. For my first go back into the arena of wine, it was a solid introduction. If it’s a wine with color, let it be lighter on my senses.
At this venue, what was on the food menu was:
- Salmon Tar Tar – Salmon and Cream cheese on Low GI.
- Cocktail burgers – Beef, topped with Gouda cheese, on a normal roll, with cocktail tomatoes, pickles, and sweet chilli mayo sauce.
- Gorgonzola – Goats cheese, baby marrow, garnish with parsley, on a normal roll.
- Chicken Shwarma – Quarter chicken, cooked with garlic, ginger, and Kajun spice.
Not that we got to eat the goodies that were advertised as accompanying the wine-tasting. Miscommunication meant the majority, including my fellow editor and I who were invited as press to review the event, didn’t bring wallets having expected the grub to come with the downing of the drinks. Woe was us 🙁
Anyway, then I got to tasting some Craft Cider. I rightly assumed it involved ciders and a unique way of making them – NAILED IT! Drift Farm makes this really tasty Cluver & Jack Cider that’s like appled-down Savannah. So as you’d guess, I asked for another sip of that brew.
Cape Point Vineyards had an aloof woman pouring me some white wine, which tasted okay, while Splattered Toad had a large crowd being entertained by the vineyards rep. Splattered Toad is apparently a 2 time award-winning wine. I sampled their 2015 Sauvignon Blanc and boy is it grassy! I presume they grabbed an extra handful of grass while trying to catch that frog for their label.
Hartenberg had me tasting their 2015 Alchemy Chenin Blanc, which wasn’t that memorable unfortunately.
Location 2 in our grand adventure was the Tjing Tjing Bar around the corner. I got a glass of Hermanuspietersfontein’s Sauvignon Blanc and Raats’s 2014 Chenin Blanc – both delightfully bland in taste, but I dug the fact that they had no aftertaste.
Location 3 was The House of Machines, located in some obscure corner , and is where I used to grab croissants from every time I went to work. I had a sip of Yardstick’s “Raised by Wolves” Semillion, which was not that great.
Venue 4 was Signal Hill Winery where I had pure Creation, Buitenverwatching’s Chardonnay, Diemersdal Estate’s 2015 Sauvignon Blanc, and Signal Hill Winery’s Malbec. They were all surprises, giving me alot of taste, but not overwhelming me with their woodsy and grassy tones.
After this, things pretty much descended into slightly tipsy madness. We had the munchies and like 15 more wines to try at 7+ more venues. At venue 5 (Weinhaus & Biergarten) I had Springfield’s Wild West Chardonnay, which tasted like watered down everyday box wine. At Charango Peruvian Grill & Bar, I sampled Sijnn’s White wine which was easily forgettable
There was a networking session with fellow wine city-trotters outside Honest Chocolate Bar, a taste of what is arguably the best drink I had that night – Cointreau, and the gorgeous venue Bocca – where we had some Almenkerk Sauvignon Blanc.
I have vague recollections of encountering organized chaos, sampling wines and no food at Jason Bakery, Palma, Culture Club, Bacon on Bree, Door 221, Little Saint, and The Gin Bar. I had the most amazing Nachos to sate my hunger, and round-up the wine adventure, at Orphanage Cocktail Emporium.
I highly recommend taking this #InnerCityWineRoute journey for anyone above the age of 18! It’s just really super fun with your colleagues or mates. This curated mid-week wine adventure offers unique wine experiences at each stop. They tried teaching me things but I held fast to everything Hollywood movies and tv shows have taught me about wine – mostly that you can have it with popcorn (thank you Olivia Pope), white wine goes with fish, and absolutely NO BOX WINE!
So you get to follow the fairies(yeah, you read right), and use your schnoz to smell the fancy fumes that make you look like a discerning wine sommelier – visit Tuning the Vine‘s website for more details.