Pinotage – The story of South Africa’s wine

Everyone loves a good story and when introducing overseas wine lovers to our distinctively South African Pinotage, the story never fails to entrance. The anecdotal tale of how four almost forgotten experimental seeds were saved from obscurity and went on to form the basis of South Africa’s bold new wine paints a vivid picture, and the subsequent series of the ups and downs involved in launching this iconic varietal make for even more interesting reading.


Our series of happy coincidences kick off in 1925 in Stellenbosch where Abraham Izak Perold, the first Professor of Viticulture at Stellenbosch University, set out to combine the elegance and refined taste of the great French Pinot Noir grape varietal with the more robust and disease resistant Cinsaut. Cinsaut was known as Hermitage in South Africa at the time – hence the charming portmanteau name – Pinotage. Perold mysteriously kept no notes on this experiment and illogically planted the only four seeds that were produced in his own garden at his official residence Welgevallen Experimental farm and not the university’s nursery for observation. Two years later Perold moved out of the Welgevallen residence and the garden was left to run riot. University staff sent a cleaning crew to the property to tidy the overgrown garden up for its next tenant.

Were it not for another twist in the tale, the first Pinotage grapes as we know it today might have been destroyed in that supposed clean-up. As it happens, Dr Charlie Niehaus, a young lecturer who knew about the existence of the four rogue seeds was cycling past the property as the crew prepared to start their clean-up. We can only imagine the erstwhile Professor Perold must have mentioned their existence to his junior colleague, and this is what saved the Pinotage varietal in the end. The young plants had flourished and were carefully transplanted to the nursery at Elsenburg Agricultural College.

After another few years of peace and quiet the seedlings were grafted into established rootstock once again at Welgevallen. Once again fate seems to have been keeping a close guard on the progress of this young varietal. Much of the Welgevallen rootstock was subsequently largely wiped-out by a fungal infection. And to make matters even more interesting, Perold was allowed to once again play a role in the future of this bold new varietal. Upon visiting his old home he was shown the new grafted plants after 10 years of progress. Perold was once again swept up in the excitement of his initial ground-breaking experiment and immediately set plans in motion to have the new varietal propagated to see how it would perform. And in tradition of legends the new plants naturally outperformed all others. The best specimens were selected for further cultivation and according to history the first Pinotage wine was subsequently produced at nearby Elsenburg from the first Pinotage vineyard in 1941. Myrtle Grove farm near Sir Lowry’s Pass will go down in history as the place where the first commercial planting of Pinotage was made. Plantings were also made in nearby Kanonkop estate and it is this winery that went on to play a significant role in the development of Pinotage as we know it today.


Initially there was great hope and excitement surrounding this new truly South African varietal. While the grapes themselves proved to be hardy and significantly easier to grow and boasted a beautiful deep ruby red colour, the resulting wines were very unpredictable. When choosing the elegant Pinot Noir as one half of this marriage, Perold had hoped to impart the refined flavours and aromas of the Pinot onto his new varietal. Unfortunately the Pinotages produced rarely possessed this refined bouquet and tended to lean towards stronger and heavier aromas of dark fruits, tar and chocolate, some detractors even going as far as mentioning flavours of nail polish and banana. The South African wine industry in the 60s and 70s was suffering from isolation due to the reigning Apartheid government and the sanctions imposed by overseas nations, conditions that severely hampered young and inexperienced winemakers. Many had no idea how to go about handling this new varietal, its lush and easy growth meant it was overproduced and ended up used to bulk out more popular blends and easy drinking table and house wines.

By the 90s and at the end of Apartheid, the star of this local wine had faded considerably, both locally and internationally, but the new spotlight on our young Rainbow Nation awoke fresh interest in all things South African. While many winemakers had given up on figuring out how best to handle the Pinotage grapes, a few die-hards had perfected both the growing and making of Pinotage, most notably one of the original Pinotage producers – Kanonkop. By growing the vines in a free bush shape growth was optimised, and old-fashioned open-top fermentation seemed to produce wines that aged beautifully. In the late 80s Kanonkop’s Beyers Truter produced the winning wine for the first Diners Club Pinotage category. Many wine collectors sat up and took notice, some returning to their cellars to open up earlier versions of Kanonkop’s Pinotage – and found that the wine had matured exceptionally well.

Truter went on to become the first South African winemaker to be crowned International Winemaker of the Year at the 1991 International Wine and Spirit Competition. The fact that he earned this award by perfecting South Africa’s own wine is truly a testament to how far this wine has come locally and internationally. While there are still many oenophiles locally and overseas who won’t touch a Pinotage, this home-grown hero is definitely here to stay. Beyers Truter went on to further experiment with his favourite varietal at Beyerskloof vineyards, currently one of the most successful producers in the country. While Pinotage will never become a dominant varietal such as Merlot or Shiraz, it is certainly a success in its own right. Recently various other “new world” wine producing countries have also reached success by cultivating Pinotage vines, most notably New Zealand, California, Israel and Brazil.

This article was brought to by the people from SaffaTrading, South African Food Exporters. You can visit them on their website or even join their Facebook page to upcoming specials.


Banana pudding recipe

Banana foster bread pudding.

Banana foster bread pudding. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Banana pudding recipe is a starter recipe and you don’t need to do hectic tasks because it is a homemade desert recipe. But why we need banana desert or banana pudding? Because it is creamy, sweet, and sinfully yummy to the taste senses. The best part of this recipe is, you don’t need box pudding to mix it up. Let’s start with the apparatus.

Apparatus or things you need to make Banana pudding recipe: Suger (one third or as per the taste), Purpose Flour (One fourth cup), Salt (One fourth teaspoon), Three cups of dairy milk, Three or four eggs, five or six drops of vanilla essence, fifty to sixty vanilla wafer, and the key ingredient; Bananas (four to five bananas ripped into thick slices. That is it! You got the apparatus, now let’s come to the important as well as essential part; How to learn this recipe.

Instructions: Sugar, purpose flour, and salt should be mixed in a large saucepan. After mixing for a while, you need to whisk the milk. Everything is added and now we have to look into the saucepan until the mixture gets think with nice consistency, If you are not sure about the thickness then cook this in medium heat for proper concentration. After that, remove the pan from heat and let it turn into a cool mixture.

The next thing you need to do is, whisking the eggs in a small bowl, after that, add the mixture and mix it all together. Now you need heat this complete mixture for 2 minutes (until it boils). Let the mixture cool down and add vanilla essence. Now the raw process is completed lets join the level of setting banana pudding. Pick a baking dish and arrange vanilla wafers in the bottom or create a layer of vanilla wafers.

Now everything is up to you; how you want it to design or what you want to add in it. You have pudding mixture, You have sliced bananas, and you have wafers on the bottom. Confused? OK Let me help you with this; make it in my style and after that you can try different things with banana puddings. Crush some nuts for topping. You have baking dish so add a small amount of pudding and then create a layer of banana slices, then again add pudding mixture and create a layer of vanilla wafer. Keep doing this until the top and sprinkle the nuts. Refrigerate the dish for at least 6 hours. You banana pudding recipe is ready to eat. Isn’t it easy? Try the recipe and share your experience with us.

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Leading Comfort Foods That Are Surprisingly Good For You

There is a good reason why certain foods are referred to as comfort foods – they are soothing to one’s soul, tickles one’s taste buds and brings back warm memories. Unfortunately, a great deal of comfort foods is laden with fat and unhealthy sugar quantities, while others are deep-fried or smothered in cheese. But there are still some comfort foods out there that are actually good for you and can help you in losing weight. Here are some snug eats that can help you to battle your bulge:

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Banana split cake recipe

Banana split

Banana split (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Banana split is an ice cream dessert which is a form of Sundae. Generally, this dish is made inside a stretched pontoon molded vessel, beginning with the peeled & cut banana. Core space can be filled with other flavors, for example, Strawberry, vanilla, or chocolate. You can add pineapple sundae in vanilla scoop topping. Chocolate and strawberry can share their basic sundae for the other topping part. It is a personalized recipe so you can add your flavors and components to match up the atmosphere. Some people add whipped cream on the top while other health freaks would not add this to their split cake.

If you are a concerned with health issues, then you can add nuts and cherries to give a look instead of whipped cream on the top, however, eating once in a while will not spoil your dieting plan. Let me share some history of banana split cake with you before starting the informative recipe plan. Banana split cake was first introduced in 1907, in an Ohio restaurant for attracting the college students. That’s why Ohio banana split cake recipe is famous worldwide these days.

So lets go for the recipe; We need apparatus first: Nine graham crackers (crushed), 1 cup sugar (should be divided), 2 Packets of Philadelphia cream cheese. One can of pineapple, 6 to 7 bananas, Two cups of chilled milk (cow milk), around two cups of whipped cream (don’t pour it in the cup, it is just a measurement for topping), and one cup Planter pecans chopped.

Working: You need to mix the graham crumbs with quarter sugar and butter, then press it is medium pan, then freeze this mixture with pan for 10 minutes. On the other hand, mix cheese and the remaining part of sugar and blend it in a mixer. Now spread this very gently over the crust. Topping part will start will processed pineapple, so top those pineapples and slice four bananas over the pineapple topping. Pudding mixture should be whisked with milk for two minutes, Spread the whip over the banana layer and top with your favorite items, for example, nuts, and cherries. After all the process, Refrigerate it for five hours (Remember: Do not freeze; Refrigerate only). Everything is done; just slice the remaining two bananas over the cake and that is how you learned how to make a banana split cake.

Health tips: Decrease the cheese as well as sugar value. Use a LITE whipped cream for less calories.


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Alligator meat




English: Meat packages in a Roman supermarket.

English: Meat packages in a supermarket. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This exotic meat is regarded as a beneficial meat with many advantages. People consume this alligator meat in a few nations, for example, Africa, Australia, Malaysia, and you may also find this meat in many luxury hotels in the US.


The tail portion of alligator meat is the best segment of the huge Croc, as per some researches. Most people say it tastes like chicken and some people consider this portion as a fish taste flavor. But actually taste varies from alligator to alligator; different types of alligator may taste different. The reason most people love the tail portion is its tenderness and softness.


The rest of the area of alligator is harder, so the meat will also be the toughest. The different thing about alligator meat is, it taste and flavors uniquely with every part of it. The taste of gator changes within its parts, which is a surprise for the people who eating it the first time.


In comparison, between other meats and alligator meat, you may find more alligator meat is more beneficial. Alligator meat has very good nutritional properties and it is rich in carbohydrates, sodium, and protein. Other meats like chicken, sausage, ham are not good for health due to excessive calorie and low protein levels.


It is a sort of meats that isn’t promptly accessible in simply any market you stroll into; it is as uncommon as the deer and ostrich meat. Business crocodiles’ homesteads on the United States’ southern drift and in nations like Australia that have substantial amounts of gators in their regions are answerable for the handling of a huge rate of all crocodile meat sold in the business. These ranches offer solidified Croc meat, in huge cooler packs, to some markets and grocer shops to verify that it continues to be fresh until it reaches the last customer.


Every alligator meat which is sold in the market will come in proper packing and the hygienic conditions of this meat will be very good. The farm people take very good care of their farms and alligators, that is why the business sector of the meat is appreciating alligator market. You can get this meat from reputed seafood shops. Don’t worry, these shops also care for their products and you will definitely get fresh alligator meat from them. Nowadays alligator meat is served in most of the US states in the form of patties, sausages, and hamburgers.


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Losing Fat And Getting Healthier With Garcinia Cambogia

Losing weight using a dietary supplement called Garcinia Cambogia Extract can surely help boost your body’s ability to lose as much pound as you want compared to solely relying on exercise and a simple diet only. Garcinia is a plant which originates from is India and some parts of Asia. This article describes in detail, how to lose weight with garcinia cambogia. Read on!

Long before it became known, Garcinia Cambogia was being used by the Indians to suppress appetite though at a small scale. People who have been living in places where it grows have enjoyed its benefits for long. It’s a natural and very safe way to cut down weight loss according to Dr.Oz who even nicknamed it “the holy grail for weight loss”. From what many users have testified, it has been proven to be an appetite suppressant as well as fat burner’ .

The Major Ingredients O f Garcinia Cambogia

The main ingredients used in garcinia cambogia supplement are the Hydroxycitric acid (HCA) and antioxidants which are major ingredient in many other weight loss supplements. This inhibits the uptake of carbohydrates that is stored in the body in form of fat. By doing so, the body burns them into energy and this increases energy levels as well as decreasing fat levels in the body.

The HCA also prevents cravings for carbohydrate heavy foods, sugar heavy foods and balancing the blood sugar levels. Furthermore, it increases the serotin levels which transmits an impulse to the brain and makes you feel full faster and hence making you lose weight naturally .All the ingredients are made in a pure and natural way to restore your body shape.

How Garcinia Cambogia results into weight loss

This supplement is very powerful in cutting off appetite .This leads to reduced ingestion of extra calories and hence accelerating the weight loss. The antioxidants remove body’s waste products as well as burning the excess fats. The weight is reduced by the following means:

· The visceral fats accumulation which wraps the inner organs including the belly are burned completely.

· The total fat area is lowered significantly due to the combustion from the antioxidants and eventually, the obesity and overweight issue is completely forgotten.

· The subcutaneous fat accumulation found below the skin is also melted and if they are melted significantly, rapid weight loss is observed.

Besides being an appetite suppressant, Dr Oz Garcinia Cambogia is also a cravings killer turns your body into a 10000c furnace and this destroys all excess fats in the body. It also changes the body’s biochemical activities which stops all the fat manufacturing cells from secreting more and more fats.

Benefits Of Using Garcinia Cambogia?

1. Increased rate of metabolism which burns body fats within a very short time.

2. Mood enhancement.

3. Reduces cravings.

4. Easy weight loss method as compared to visiting the gym daily.

Possible Side Effects Of Garcinia Cambogia?

Garcinia cambogia is a natural and a very safe way to cut down your weight loss drastically without having any side effects at all.

Best wines for barbecue

Are you planning a barbeque party? Would you like to know what wines will go best with your favourite skewers? Summertime is barbeque time indeed. Below are the top barbeque wines to serve your eager guests:

1. La Grille Pinot Noir
Just from the name of this wine itself, you’ll know that it is especially made for barbecues. This French wine tastes soft and fresh, with a hint of chocolate and blackberries. It is highly recommended for pork sausages and grilled chops.

2. Zinfandels
If you’re looking for a wine that is not meat-specific, then try this brand. Zinfandels is perfect for all red meat variants. As a tasty red wine, it can belly up the meaty and the smoky flavours of beef, pork, and lamb. It also meshes well with your barbecue dips, salsas, and steak sauce.

3. Shooting Star
The complete name of this wine is No. 1 Family Estate Shooting Star. Imported from Marlborough, New Zealand, this variant belongs to a family of French Champagne. It is a rather citrus wine made from the grape variant called Sauvignon Blanc. You’ll love its clean, crisp, and tropical fruit flavour.

4. Tesco Valpolicella
If you love blackcurrant, you’ll definitely love this Italian wine. It is fairly light and tasty, with touches of cherry and plum. This wine is most recommended if you’re tossing some lamb cuts on the grill.

5. Merlot
This fresh-tasting wine will add not just spice into your barbecue fun but a good finish to your spicy sauces as well. This fruit-flavoured wine will work perfectly with chicken and pork chops. Even the salads and the veggies on the skewers will respond well to it.

6. Mumm Napa Cuvee M Red
This sparkling red wine made from the orchard of Napa Valley, California will add that lacking flair of sweetness into your summer barbecue fun. You’ll delight in its red fruit flavour that is distinctively tasty.

Those are our top suggestions. Try them next time you visit your favorite barbecue restaurant.

Grapes Cultivation

Prior to the beginning of a XIX-th century grapes put in a chaotic order, and only then landings began to organise equal numbers – so a plant to look after easier. Some time ago for the supporting rods were used exclusively concrete columns which now actively replace with the wooden. It is impossible to tell precisely, what for it becomes, maybe, concrete negatively influences taste of fruits, and can, at ploughing they are touched with a tractor. Since bible times in optimum height of a plant it is considered 60 sm, the top runaway divide on two branches supported by strings which fasten to columns. From history it is known that vineyards were carefully protected not only from animals, but also from thieves. On plantation perimetre enclosed with stone walls, and in the centre there was a three-metre watchtower.

Especially an important point in care of a grapevine is the irrigation. For example, on the Sinai Peninsula practised such method. At roots of plants put the big stones for which surfaces the dew formed from difference of day and night temperatures gathered. This moisture made 1/4 from a quantity of water necessary for grapes. However it is a lot of water too it is bad. Rain thunder-storms on the eve of harvesting lead watered juice that worsens quality of grapes.

As to a climate is better hot weather. Therefore in areas with a cool climate it is necessary to put early ripening varieties, for example, Shardone. And here grapes of Semijon never will ripen in cool climatic zones. It is necessary to approach to grade selection rather cautiously that the ripened fruits contained optimum balance of sugar and acid. For example, in France thermophilic Pino Nuar is put in hardly by more cool areas, therefore manufacture of the Burgundian red wines long since endures that dazzling success, a total failure. In warm regions the main task of the wine maker – not to allow to grapes to ripen too quickly, differently flavouring qualities of fruits will not have time to reach peak. Therefore some farmers reap a crop before the term in order the wine contain more percent of acid .

The main problem is the problem of fertilizers. If in the XX-th century herbicides and pesticides now there is an opinion were widely applied that the chemistry worsens taste of grapes and, accordingly, wine. Therefore use of compost and natural methods of pest control of a grapevine becomes more and more popular, besides it promotes restoration of microbiological structure of soil. ;

There is a set of subtleties of cultivation of grapes. For example, cutting or a garter of leaves which can cover clusters of grapes from the sun. Moreover, they promote formation of the damp environment round fruits that can promote mould and decay occurrence. As a result grapes badly grow ripe, and wine from it turns out sour.

Also it is necessary to pay attention to earth type. Stony, sandy and loamy soils concern to warm ground that promotes faster ripening of fruits. And clay and limy soils require good drainage system. In zones with warm environmental conditions it is possible to manage and without a drainage. Some grades of grapes are rather exacting to a ground. For example, Kaberne Sovinon gives a top yield only on the stony earth Bordo, and the grade of Shardone comfortably feels on limy soils of the French province Champagne.

In ancient times, to thank the earth for a rich crop, the wine maker dug out a hole on a plantation and squeezed out in it of a few juice of the collected fruits, thereby «allowing to the earth to enjoy wines».

How to choose Wine?

Once I have resulted the girl in fashionable wine restaurant in the USA. All was simply remarkable, the clothes on me were in the latest fashion, a smart car. But here time has come to order wine. Then it seemed to me that in this business all is simple enough. It is necessary to say only something of type “the Waiter, a bottle of your best wine”. But it has not appeared much more difficult. Wine restaurant all the same, especially in the USA…

Attempt to understand

But, short of that the fact that I at all did not know, what wine to choose for a fillet, ordered by me, and for a duck who was ordered by my ladylove, I could not even disassemble that is written in the list of wines of this American restaurant. It was simply the set of terms about which I had no concept. Earlier I considered that under names of many wines it is possible to guess at least its colour, but how it has been presented, I could not even understand white this wine or red wine, not to mention grapes or country grade in which it has been collected.

When have brought our wine, I have understood that the first time has really paid attention to a wine label. It was the double-Dutch for me. I have been assured that on a wine label the important information on fault should be specified, but I did not know where to look.

After that of a case in has made the decision that the similar should not repeat henceforth. For visiting of wine restaurant it is necessary to have at least the general concept about the data on a wine bottle. If you have come about the beautiful girl to wine restaurant of the USA to expose yourself the boor it would be desirable to nobody.

Now I know the favourite wine
Since then interest to wines became much stronger, now it not so simply to render a way impression on the lady. Let’s try make so that also you have not struck in a dirt the person on following appointment.

The label on a wine bottle contains the following data:

1. The alcohol maintenance in fault
2. A designation or area where grapes have been collected
3. Volume of a bottle
4. The name of wine
5. The manufacturer
6. Quality of wine
7. Type of wine
8. The Wine brand
9. Vintage

1. The alcohol maintenance

In the different countries various standards for a designation of quantity of alcohol in fault. In the USA the minimum maintenance of alcohol for table wines of 7 %, maximum is equal 14 %. Though on wine bottles percentage of alcohol in fault is specified, the admissible divergence is possible about 1.5 %, it is no more. And here for sherry or portveigns the alcohol maintenance varies from 17 % to 20 %.

2. A designation or area where grapes was collected.

For example as in case of wines grapes for which have been grown up in Old Light, the area, area entitles the wine have been collected. Sometimes it causes some difficulties, since those from us, who prefers wines from a New World (Australia, the Republic of South Africa, the USA or Chile), have got used to that the name wine occurs from grapes grade (Shiraz, Zinfandel) or from the vineyard name. In case the area of grapes cultivation is highly estimated by experts you can often find it on a wine label.

3. The bottle volume

Standard volume of a wine bottle which submit at wine restaurants of the USA is 750 milliliters or 1,5 litres. You can see this information on the label or at the bottom of a wine bottle.

4. The name of wine

You, probably, believe that the majority of wines have received the name thanks to district where grapes have been collected. For example, in France, Italy and Spain it indeed. Here that we observe in France:” Beaujolais “(Beaujolais),”Bordeaux”(Bordeaux) and”Champagne”(Champagne) – the is names of wines and areas. By the same principle Italian”Kjanti”(Chianti) and Spanish”Rojja”(Rioja) is named. But names to wines from these countries: the USA, the republic of South Africa, Australia, Canada and New Zealand are given a little in another way. As we spoke above, wine receives the name on a grade of grapes (vineyard). For example, Gallo of Sonoma Cabernet Sauvignon.

5. The manufacturer

In the event that you not bad understand in wines the name of the manufacturer of wine will tell to you much more, than all the rest. The is better you know with wines, the it is more than manufacturers you will know in”person”. Names of manufacturers depend on the country. In France it can be Shato (Chateau), in Bordeaux or Domejn (Domaine), in Burgundy (Burgundy). In Germany, Italy and Spain are set of estates where grapes, therefore very important exact name, since grow Manufacturers share names of districts, and quality can differ. It is especially important, if you deal with wines from Germany.

6. Quality of wine

District where grapes have been grown up and collected, similarly has the system of an estimation that can help to be defined with quality of a drink. From time to time it is underlined on a bottle but so happens not always. We take, for example, Italy where there are seven degrees of quality, beginning from Vino da Tavola and finishing Denominazione di Origine Controllata. Also, Grand Cru is a designation of best “Bordeaux” in France. Since higher class often means a better product, you can find very many quite good wines among less rating.

7. Wine type

This information never can give to you of any serious data about bottle filling. Often, you will read only “white table wine” or “dry red wine”. However it completely not necessarily specifies you a sign of quality of wine. Remember it since wines should contain not less than 75 % of one grade of grapes (as they can be and mixed) in the USA, i.e. on a wine label it is impossible to specify the grapes name. Therefore became such difficult in definition and the general names as “white wine”. For this reason it is not necessary so strongly to go in cycles in a wine version.

8. The grade of grapes

The Grade is a version of grapes of which wine, that is the special maintenance ofwine has been made. Here too there can be some difficulties since to France and Italy such information on labels do not write. Areas where in these countries can make wine of traditional grades of grapes, it “Cabernet of Savinon” (Cabernet Sauvignon) in Bordeaux and Sandzhioveze (Sangiovese) in Kjanti. As the majority of the countries do not resolve use of foreign grades of grapes in mixes in these countries of similar wine there can not be more than 15 % (25 % – for the USA).

9. Vintage

Vintage means year of vintage, instead of year of flood of wine. It is especially important at definition of quality of wine, and, of course, matters for components which mix fault of especial qualities for giving. Under laws which differ in the different states, wine to be obliged it to is made, at least, on 85 % of the grapes which have been grown up in vintage year. Other structure can be a mix of wines of different vintage years.

I perfectly understand that it can appear uneasy (only it is possible to spend for the German wines about one week) but as soon as you will be adjusted will come to a conclusion that the main thing is a good analysis.