So as you know I am an Ambassador for Kleine Zalze. I would have preferred just being the Chenin Ambassador, or maybe Ambassador Chenin, or the Ambassador for Chenin Blanc. Either way I’m drafting an application for the job, which I will send to the Chenin Association in due course.
Back to the present. I am a Kleine Zalze Ambassador, which in essence is a marketing tool for the brand. They give us wine, we blog and spread the Kleine Zalze love. It’s all good, I don’t mind a bit of whoring for a brand, as long as I’m honest about said whoring.
We were sent our wine last week. Here they are:
The wine is better than the photo. Thank god.
We were given two bottles each of the Sauvignon Blanc 2009, the Bush Vines Chenin Blanc 2009, and the Gamay Noir Rose 2009, all from the Cellar Selection range. In Wine Magazine’s recently held Chenin Challenge the Bush Vines won for best value. Although, she has a long way to go to catch up with her older sister, the barrel fermented Vineyard Selection Chenin 2008, which has more badges than an overeager Boy Scout.
After being sent the wines we were issued with our first challenge:
“We challenge you to get out there and share one of your precious bottles of Kleine Zalze wine with one (or some) very privileged people. Who? How? You ask. Well, that’s up to you . . .
. . . How you do this challenge is up to you, all we ask if that you report back to us. We want you to blog about how it went. We’re talking details, pictures, descriptions… we want it all!
Well, what are you waiting for? Get your bottle openers out and get cracking!”
I am not quite sure why they told us to get our bottle openers out as all the wines we were sent were sealed with screw-caps. Never mind.
I drink wine almost every day. Whether it is with friends over dinner, by myself with a book, or sometimes when I’m lazy I just set up a drip. The point is that I really could think of nothing worse than having a drink with friends and shoving a camera in their face. The only people who I could do that to are total strangers.
So when I was invited for a trip up Table Mountain I decided to take a bottle of Kleine Zalze’s Bush Vines Chenin 2009 with me. I loved the 2008, after a year in the bottle the wine was really becoming expressive; a thick straw-like character came forward mingling with the concentrated fruit punch flavours very well. A truly outstanding value for money wine.
Enough of that, here is my post from the The Love of Wine blog:
“So instead of opening one of my complimentary bottles over dinner, I thought I would do something a little different. I decided to take my Cellar Selection Chenin 2009 for a little walk.
I think a little honesty is needed here: I didn’t walk up Table Mountain. I walked from my car to the cable car, I walked from the cable car to the restaurant , and then I walked all that in reverse, after finishing all the wine.
Looking inconspicuous with my Chenin at the bottom of the mountain.
After a quick glass at the bottom of the mountain we piled into the cable car and up we went. It was a little misty, but I wasn’t going up for the view I was going up to drink. On reaching the top I decided it was time to share a bit of Chenin love with some of the others who had decided to brave the weather.
Aaand there you go
Mmmm, I’d rather drink Chenin than follow my man.
Thanks, but I’ll have that back now.
I heard one of the guys we were with saying, “bugger this for a lark, let’s go for a beer.” I chuckled inwardly. Beers, not bloody likely, we’re drinking wine.
So we all piled into the Table Mountain Cafe where I had a quick nip of the Chenin before passing it off on everyone else.
Here is all the sharing-is-caring-Chenin-loving:
Peter Schoeman a big shot architect at MLH was very impressed with the wine. As you can see by the look on his face, it was hard getting the wine back.
An Architectural Technologist, also from MLH, Eugene’s beer was happily interrupted by dose of Chenin goodness.
This is Dave, a second year student studying at UCT who had come up the mountain for someone’s birthday. He is studying business something-or-other and showed wonderful imagination when I asked him what he thought of the wine. “Nice. It’s young.” Well of course it’s young I just told you it was a 2009 vintage.
Moving along I spoke to Sakkie from Pretoria, who you can see here taking a big whiff. He enjoyed the wine a lot, "very good for a Chenin." For a Chenin! What! Might have found a convert here though, because when I told him the price he said he would look out for it when he gets back home.
Dion – who I could have sworn was from New Zealand although he claimed he was from Durban – thought the wine was “lovely” as I’m sure you can tell from his big grin. I asked him how much he thought the wine costs, and he said around R50. Value, baby, value.
This saucy minx is Mida Kirova a town planner from MLH who loves Chenin in general and this one in particular. Nederberg Sauvignon Blanc or Kleine Zlaze Chenin? Hmmmm.
With the bottle finished we headed back down and I thought I could get one last photo op with a staff member. Check how stoked she is!
What the photo can’t show is us hissing at each other through our big grins:"It’s mine." "Don’t you bloody dare." "Give it back".
So that was my first adventure with my free wines. I’m think of swimming out to some rocks at Oude Kraal and quaffing some Rose with the seals next. Or maybe some Sauvignon Blanc while cage diving. Who knows.”
One thing I was reminded of as I wandered from table to table in the Cafe dishing out wine, is that people are so much more amiable when you approach grinning, with a bottle of wine.