Oct 08 2011
Went to Paarl to check-out some guyΓò¼├┤Γö£├ºΓö£├╗s eggs. Guy goes by the name of Arco. Laarman. Makes wine at Glen Carlou. One of the best EstateΓò¼├┤Γö£├ºΓö£├╗s in the Paarl area. SA, too. Dig the Pinot Noir. Grand Classique Bordeaux blend. And, excuse me, the Chardonnay.
Which is lying in ArcoΓò¼├┤Γö£├ºΓö£├╗s eggs. Huge concrete things. Weigh almost a ton-and-a-half. Almost as big as Michael FridjhonΓò¼├┤Γö£├ºΓö£├╗s ego. Almost as thick as Tim JamesΓò¼├┤Γö£├ºΓö£├╗s knowledge of South African farmworker conditions. Dense, like Michelangelo Competition organisers. Wosa communication skills.
Keeps the lees in suspension, says Arco when asked about the role of these big eggs. All symmetry, balance, G-spot intensity, perfection, GodΓò¼├┤Γö£├ºΓö£├╗s gift to the wine world these eggs are. And great for marketing.
Arco sucked some wine out of the eggs. Chardonnay. 2011. We tasted. ItΓò¼├┤Γö£├ºΓö£├╗s all Glen Carlou. Can smell and taste this stuff and recognise it after having my eyes gouged out by the talons of a bald eagle. Sweet, honeycomb nuttiness. Fresh hay. Hit of minerality.
Yum. The wineΓò¼├┤Γö£├ºΓö£├╗s going into blends with wooded-wine. Later, alligator.
But then up to the tasting room, and some more Chardonnay. From a bottle this time. A flint, clear bottle. Unwooded. Glen CarlouΓò¼├┤Γö£├ºΓö£├╗s first virginal unwooded Chardonnay. 2011. The wineΓò¼├┤Γö£├ºΓö£├╗s only available at the winery. Selling fast, brother. Faster than the phone-calls from an advertising salesperson from a new wine magazine, soon to be off the presses.
Arco picks up the bottle. Christ, this guy has huge hands. Jam╬ô├╢┬ú╬ô├╢├⌐n Iberico hands. Big as a bush-vine Pinotage vine undergoing GM experimentation.
Pours the wine. Gluggity-glug. The whiff hits me from a meter.
Purity of fruit, purity of intense fresh wine. The aroma only Chardonnay can give.
ItΓò¼├┤Γö£├ºΓö£├╗s got jasmine. ItΓò¼├┤Γö£├ºΓö£├╗s got rose-petal. ItΓò¼├┤Γö£├ºΓö£├╗s got dried mango. Fresh green apple.
I take a hit, a huge gobful. It lies comfortably and without offending anything in this thirsty dry mouth. Juicy, all juice. Like Kylie Minogue sweating during thermal yoga glasses. Crisp and exotic. Grilled hand-picked Macadamia nuts from the Big Island in Hawaii. Royal jelly stolen from the hives tended by Tibetan monks in the hills ofΓò¼├┤Γö£├ºΓö¼┬¼..fuckit, there, where these dudes hang out. A refreshing mineral leanness, due to the quartz, shale content of the stone.
WineΓò¼├┤Γö£├ºΓö£├╗s got structure. Entry, mid-palate and finish. All in tune. In harmony. Like Clapton, Bruce, Baker. Badge. White room. (The band is Cream.)
Love it. South African Chardonnay rocks.
Took a bottle with me. Drove to Kitchen Cowboys Canteen. Woodstock. Which is becoming hip. No dwisses. No more.
Found Peter Goffe-Wood in the Canteen. Personally. Cooking my lunch. Lunch I was going to have with the Boerboel. Boela Gerber. Cool area this Canteen is. Cool vibe. Kitchen. Eating joint. Cooking school. Lounge. ChefΓò¼├┤Γö£├ºΓö£├╗s wife in tight jeans. Rock on. Check it out. More Le Creuset cookware than can be found in the house of a Higgovale Kugel. Orange colour. Traditional.
Boela and I ordered food. Braai day. Every Friday at Goffe-WoodΓò¼├┤Γö£├ºΓö£├╗s joint. Had us some ribs to start-off.
Perfectly grilled. On bed of corn kernels. Spicy salsa. Fat dripping down chins. Did we kill that bottle of Glen Carlou Chardonnay.
Main course. Pork-belly sandwich. Thing is huge. Makes ArcoΓò¼├┤Γö£├ºΓö£├╗s hands look like grape pips. Slices of beautiful brown, saucy, crispy pork belly. On massive ciabatta.
Opened a bottle of BoelaΓò¼├┤Γö£├ºΓö£├╗s wine.╬ô├╢┬╝Γö£├¡ Cape Wine Makers Guild. Semillon Sauvignon Blanc.
Me? Prefer Bordeaux whites to red. This blendΓò¼├┤Γö£├ºΓö¼┬¼..the real deal. The main enchilada. The last rite. 67% Semillon. Rest Sauvignon. Wooded. Big. But fresh. Oozing oyster shell. Dripping dry forest floor. Flowing fresh lime peel.
It cut the pork fat. Danced with the bread and golden thick cut French fries. We glugged the stuff. Ate. Discussed the post-Steiner philosophies of bio-dynamics. Quoted Walt WhitmanΓò¼├┤Γö£├ºΓö£├╗s Civil War poetry. Deftly sketched vineyard scenes on our greasy napkins.
It was another good day.