The blog of failed beginnings begins again. Thought WineX would be a good reason to start again.
There were definitely less people and exhibitors this year. There were only 130 odd exhibitors this year. It seems a lot of the farms find they get far more value heading up to Joburg. A couple people I spoke to at the event confirmed this. One winemaker told me that with the entry, the transport, accommodation, and tasting stock taken into account he has to pay around R20 000 to attend WineX. Another told me that Cape Town attendees tended to buy far less wine than their Joburg counterparts.
Although not good for WineX itself, it did mean that one wasn’t jostled around at every table,fighting with drunks who are wandering about, arm outstretched glass in hand, shouting for Flagships, The Chocolate Block and anything with coffee. I had to laugh when one woman’s face dropped as she heard there was no Chocolate Block left, even though on the table in front of her was the Boekenhoutskloof Syrah 2006 and their Cabernet Sauvignon 2006. The Syrah was Delicious, perfumed with white peppers and a long finish (Lekker-Fokken Lekker).
Other wines that stood out were the Lammershoek Roulette and the Roulette Blanc (Fokken Lekker). Ataraxia Chardonnay, Iona Sauvignon Blanc, Bellevue Morkel Pinotage the Rijks Chenin and a host of others. I wasn’t taking many notes, and went for for the social side than to seriously taste. Tasted all the MCC’s and was on the whole disappointed, only Krone’s Nicolas Charles was above average. Pinot’s were all of good quality although very young. Vriesenhof, Bouchard Finlayson and Oak Valley stood out.
Noble Hill had a pretty cool stand, letting people taste their wines and tweet about it, with their twitter page being displayed on a big TV. They brought out the big bucks for their stand and it was easily the best stand at the show. The Twitter element, although not understood by most was fun, especially sending salacious tweets from across the room. Follow them @noblehill.
A slightly jumbled breakdown of WineX. No matter, if I go back tonight I’ll jot down some tasting notes.